Guinea Pig Sounds
Guinea pigs use sounds as a primary means of communication.
Since cavies are herd animals,
sounds are their means of maintaining social rank.
Understanding guinea pig sounds is one of the basic prerequisites for understanding
what your pet is trying to tell you.
(Turn your speakers on, crank up the volume and click on the sound name to actually hear it. Don’t be surprised if your pet suddenly jumps into ‘stand-by’ mode if in the hearing range:)
“Good” guinea pig sounds: You are doing it right!
- Onomatopoeic name for a guinea pig sound which is sometimes also called squealing or whistling
- It is a common vocalization generally communicating anticipation and excitement, particularly about being fed, or in response to the presence of its owner
- Wheeking is considered to be a form of begging, in some cases mostly heard in the morning and the evening (associated with feeding time)
- Sometimes it serves as a call for an attention as they frequently call to their human slaves
- One can often hear this sound when owner opens refrigerator or is rustling with plastic bags which guinea pig usually links to food source
- This is an upgrade from the plastic-bag/fridge-opening begging. Your guinea pig soon learns other food-proximity indicators
- This is an example of a guinea pig which is not completely sure, but seriously suspects that food is near, and is giving you a notice that he/she is also near, and ready to make that food gone
- The sound in the background is the sound of cleaning and chopping the carrot. This guinea pig has learned that when we are preparing vegetables for a soup, there’s going to be treats. Possibly lots of them. And this is just the reminder – when he becomes sure of it, then the real wheeking begins.
- Bubbling or purring can be heard when the cavy is enjoying itself/being happy (e.g. when being petted or held)
- Can be also produced when given food, grooming, or crawling around to investigate a new place
- NOTE: Beware of the purring pitch and body language which complements this guinea pig sound category and could change original meaning (if the purr is higher pitched toward the end, andyour pet seems to vibrate and tense, this could be interpreted as a sound of annoyance)
- Calming, relaxing sound of guinea pig grazing hay
- Noise of spreading hay around with the animal’s front feet can be heard in the background
- TIP: Before going to work, provide your pet with fresh dose of hay, put the cage near you and enjoy morning meditation
- Possibly the least understood or heard guinea pig sound
- Sound pattern similar to bird song
- Could be related to stress or when a baby pigs want to be fed
- Sound recorded while guinea pig was sleeping comfortably on the human slave belly, wrapped in the cozy towel
- Breathing rhythm on the record does not represent the real breathing rhythm, because some of the parts were cut off so that sounds could be heard as clearly as possible
- Do you have snoring problems? This guinea pig is daring any human to beat him in the snoring contest, se feel free to accept the challenge!
- NOTE: If your guinea pig starts to make similar sounds to snoring (or wheezing/clicking) when breathing, be sure to check for symptoms of illness, just to be on the safe side
- This sound has nothing to do with what you think it has to do
- Loosely translated, it means “Can I have some beer please!“
- It is often heard when putting the guinea pig on the starfighter in space-battle situations
- It is reported that complying with this translation saves the owner some fingers
- It is NEVER recommended to give your guinea pig a beer if not on the starfighter in space-battle setting
“Bad” guinea pig sounds: You are about to loose a finger (or nose tip).
- Sounds like purring, only lower pitched (deeper) and accompanied with vibrating.
- Response to being scared or angry in which case the rumble often sounds higher and the body vibrates shortly
- Also related to dominance within a group
- Petting in the wrong spots (for instance, on your pet’s underside) often results in low rumbling sound
- Used to communicate annoyance or dislike for something an owner or another guinea pig is doing
- Can be head in pursuit situations (both the pursuer and the pursuee)
- Aggressive vocalization: a sign of an agitated or angry cavy
- This guinea pig sound is made by rapidly gnashing the teeth
- Often accompanied by showing the teeth (looks like a yawn, but more sinister) and raising the head
- Freely interpreted as “back off” or “stay away”
- If you hear this sound, it could already be too late – you probably already took a hit
- Usually accompanied by teeth chattering (see previous), in some cases this sound represents the animal defending itself (usually from inside the hiding place), sometimes when tempering with the food or bedding in its near proximity
- In other cases, it could be heard while the animal is escaping, in reaction to perceived sudden danger
- Shortly after producing this sound, usually follows the strike – the animal is reaching out with its head from its hiding place in a short burst, trying to hit “the enemy” with its teeth
- Owners are advised to respect the pet’s private quarters and to stay calm if getting bitten – in no circumstances should one hit the animal or yell at it
- Our research suggests that this kind of guinea pig behavior is not very common
- A high-pitched noise of discontent, pain and/or fear
- Response to pain or immediate danger
- ! URGENT NOTE: Check on your pet ASAP to make sure everything is okay!