The ideal guinea pig cage size will depend on the number of cavies you own.
One guinea pig needs at least 7.5 square feet of space. But, the more space you can give them the better. And, it’s best to keep at least two guinea pigs, since they are so social, which means a bigger cage.
A good rule of thumb for choosing cage size is to add an additional two to four square feet of space per animal.
Let’s take a closer look at the ideal guinea pig cage size and type, and where you can buy one.
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Guinea Pig Cage Size Quick Links
- Is guinea pig cage size important?
- How big should a guinea pig cage be?
- Minimum cage size for 2 guinea pigs
- Minimum cage size for 3 guinea pigs
- Best indoor guinea pig cages
- What kind of cage is best for guinea pigs?
- Benefits of larger guinea pig cages
- Indoor vs outdoor guinea pig cages
- Guinea pig cage ideas for small spaces
- Guinea pig cage setup
Is Guinea Pig Cage Size Important?
The most important factor in choosing your guinea pig’s cage is size.
Veterinarians agree that commercially available guinea pig housing is often undersized, or only designed for one guinea pig. But guinea pigs really should be kept in a pair or more.
If your guinea pig doesn’t get enough space, they may become depressed, stressed, and unwell.
Studies into cage size on rodents such as hamsters and rats have shown that small housing can cause chronic stress.
How Big Should a Guinea Pig Cage Be?
According to the RSPCA and the Humane Society, the minimum guinea pig cage size is 7.5 square feet.
For example, a cage that is 42 by 24 inches, or 106 by 61 centimeters. A 30 by 36 inch cage is also a good choice.
In addition to providing seven square feet of space for your guinea pig to run around in, your cage should be at least 12 to 18 inches tall.
However, this is an absolute minimum. Ideally, a single guinea pig should have around 10.5 square feet of space, if not more.
And, guinea pigs are not solitary pets. Owners will keep at least a pair of guinea pigs, if not more.
Keeping a guinea pig alone can cause stress, depression, and loneliness for your pet. But, with more guinea pigs comes the need for extra space.
Keeping One Guinea Pig
Most cages available in stores are actually designed for just one guinea pig. This is good news for the owner of single guinea pigs.
You can sometimes end up with a single guinea pig if you have adopted one from a rescue center who says they don’t get on with other piggies.
But, in most cases, guinea pigs are happiest when living with other cavies. Most owners will have at least two guinea pigs, and must choose a cage large enough to accommodate this.
Cage Size For 2 Guinea Pigs
Guinea pigs are social creatures, and so many owners like to keep several guinea pigs together. Most new guinea pig owners are advised to get a pair of piggies to keep each other company.
As we learnt earlier, a good rule of thumb for choosing cage size is to add an additional two to four square feet of space per animal.
So, a cage for two guinea pigs, using that rule, should have anywhere from 9 to 11 square feet of space. A standard size is 30 by 50 inches. And, as before, bigger is better.
You can safely house either two males from the same litter, two females, or one female and one male (as long as one is fixed) in one cage. They will benefit from the company, and you will have another furry friend to play with.
Sometimes, the best guinea pig cage is a rabbit cage. Rabbit habitats are often larger than habitats sold for guinea pigs.
Cage Size for 3 Guinea Pigs
The minimum size cage for three guinea pigs is around eleven square feet, but the bigger the better. Fifteen square feet is ideal.
30 by 76 inch cages are a good choice, but can be hard to find.
Three guinea pigs get a little trickier when it comes to indoor housing.
To avoid conflict, only house one male guinea pig in a mixed herd. For example, you can house one neutered male with two females, or three males, but you should not house two male guinea pigs with one female.
Best Indoor Guinea Pig Cages
We’re going to take a look at some of the best indoor guinea pig cages in a moment. But for now, here’s a quick summary.
|Midwest Guinea Pig Habitat Doubly Extended||3 guinea pigs (with all expansions)||Can accommodate 2+ cavies.|
Easy to clean.
Soft lined floor to protect guinea pig feet.
|Must buy expansions to get enough space for 3 cavies. |
Initially only large enough for 1.
|Ferplast Rabbit Cage||2 guinea pigs||Well ventilated.|
Easy to clean.
Over minimum size for two guinea pigs.
|May need to adjust cage slightly to make it more suitable for guinea pigs rather than rabbits.|
|Ferplast Krolis Guinea Pig Cage||2 guinea pigs||Well ventilated.|
Separate nesting compartment.
Entire front of cage opens for easy access to guinea pigs.
|Only meets minimum space requirement for two guinea pigs.|
|Wabbit Deluxe Indoor Cage||1 guinea pig (Potentially 2 with extension)||Well ventilated.|
Gentle flooring for delicate cavy feet.
Easy to clean and assemble.
|Only large enough once the extension is added.|
|Living World Guinea Pig Cage||1 guinea pig||Well ventilated.|
Dark animal hideout under a balcony for cavies to sleep in.
Easy to assemble.
Gentle on delicate cavy feet.
|Extra large size is only suitable for one guinea pig.|
Some guinea pigs may not enjoy using the balcony.
MidWest Homes for Pets Guinea Habitat
The Guinea Habitat* created by MidWest Homes for Pets, offers the perfect starter guinea pig cage.
It has 9 square feet of space. So the basic starter version is not large enough for two cavies to share.
But, the best thing about this cage is that it can be expanded.
Owners can buy an additional habitat or extension to offer up to sixteen square feet of living space. This provides enough space for three to four pigs to live comfortably.
Ferplast Rabbit Cage
The Ferplast Rabbit Cage* is 63.78 by 23.62 inches (10.4 square inches).
This cage has almost ten and a half square feet of play and living space, making it ideal for two guinea pigs.
But, if you do buy a rabbit cage for your guinea pig, you may have to make a few adjustments.
For example, your guinea pigs will probably prefer their food dishes to be on the ground, so you may have to remove any lofted feeding and drinking areas if your pigs have difficulty accessing them.
Ferplast Krolis Indoor Guinea Pig Cage
The Ferplast Krolis Indoor Guinea Pig Cage carries a 55.90 by 23.62 inch cage.
It boasts a little over nine feet of living space for your pigs, which is just over the minimum required for two guinea pigs.
But, it is also well ventilated, easy to clean, and easy to set up.
Wabbitat Deluxe Rabbit Home
The basic Wabbitat Deluxe Rabbit Home* provides your guinea pig with approximately six and a half square feet of living space.
However, the extension offers almost 3 more square feet, making it suitable for one or two guinea pigs.
There is also quite a bit of variety for the extensions to choose from. You can add an extra wire segment, or even a hutch-like bedroom segment.
This cage option is well-ventilated, easy to clean, and easy to set up.
Living World Guinea Pig Cage
Living World offers large and extra-large cages* perfect for one guinea pig.
The large cage is not actually big enough to fit the minimum guinea pig cage size guidelines. But, the extra large size measures in at 46.9 inches long by 22.8 inches wide (Just under 7.5 square inches).
So, it is suitable for a solitary guinea pig. But, ideally, you should look for something larger. This cage will not be big enough for a pair of guinea pigs.
What Kind of Cage is Best for Guinea Pigs? Tips for Choosing
Pet stores are full of guinea pig cages. This article looks at indoor cages, but the measurements for guinea pig cage size apply to outdoor hutch space too.
The amount of cage choices can be overwhelming. Many new guinea pig owners make the mistake of buying cages better suited for smaller rodents.
Guinea pigs need lots of ground space to explore and run around in. They also need plenty of ventilation.
Poorly ventilated cages can lead to mold and disease. So it is generally a good idea to avoid glass aquariums if you are going to keep your guinea pigs indoors.
Instead, choose a wire, metal, or plastic cage with better air flow. You can improve this airflow by having a mesh top or even opting for no lid at all.
Guinea pigs rarely climb or jump out of their cages. Unless you have other animals in your home who might harm your guinea pig, a lid is not always necessary for an indoor cage.
Flooring and Sleeping Arrangements
Guinea pigs have tender feet. Wire or mesh cage bottoms and ramps can hurt their paws. Smooth surfaces are better suited for guinea pigs.
Benefits of Big Guinea Pig Cages
The more space your guinea pigs have, the happier and healthier they will be. Guinea pigs live anywhere from four to seven years. So it’s worth the investment.
Pet stores might not always have the guinea pig cage size you need. But that does not mean that you can’t have one specially made or make one yourself.
You can also shop online for a wider variety of sizes and have your new cage shipped directly to you.
If you are still wondering if you should invest in a big guinea pig cage, here are a few more reasons why big cages are better.
- The more space, the more likely your guinea pigs will all get along.
- Bigger cages mean that your guinea pigs will exercise more on their own terms. (Not just when you’re available to take them out).
- Guinea pigs that exercise regularly are less likely to develop serious medical conditions, like diabetes, heart disease, anal impaction, and bumblefoot.
- Larger cage is that they are easier to clean.
- More space means that your pigs are more likely to choose a specific area to use as a bathroom, instead of urinating and defecating throughout the entire cage.
Indoor vs Outdoor Guinea Pig Cages
Outdoor cages are not recommended for guinea pigs in hotter climates.
They prefer temperatures between 65 and 75 degrees and are susceptible to heat stroke, which makes outdoor housing dangerous in some areas.
Plus, your little pigs like being near their human families. Outdoor pigs can receive less interaction with their family members than indoor pigs, which can lead to skittish pets.
But big guinea pigs cages do come with a few challenges. For starters, you need to find a place to put them.
Guinea pigs do not do well when housed in drafty or damp areas, and they also do not like being housed near heat sources like vents or furnaces.
Guinea Pig Cage Ideas for Small Spaces
Unlike rats, ferrets, hamsters, mice, and gerbils, guinea pigs are not big climbers. So tiered cages are not a good replacement for floor space.
Cage add-ons like those in the cages we looked at earlier can help owners with small spaces. Because, you can mould them to fit the space available in your home.
It can also help to buy a large exercise run, and give your guinea pig time in it every day.
An exercise pen is not a substitute for cage space, but it can provide much needed exercise for your guinea pigs on a daily basis.
Guinea Pig Playpen
Guinea Pig Playpens* come in all shapes and sizes, and are a good way to let your piggies roam without having to worry about them getting into trouble.
Guinea Pig Cage Setup
It’s important to remember the things that will be taking up space in your guinea pig’s cage when you are finding one large enough.
Guinea pigs need a food bowl and constant access to fresh water. Both of these will take up valuable space in their cage.
Guinea pigs will also benefit from an enclosed, dark nesting area, where they can sleep and retreat if they are feeling unsafe or nervous. You can fill this with fresh hay, which your piggies can nest in or chew on!
You can also get your guinea pig little toys to entertain themselves with.
Remember, they need plenty of space to exercise and eat. And, they need an appropriate flooring, which won’t harm their delicate feet.
Guinea Pig Cage Size – Summary
Owning two or more guinea pigs means that you will definitely need a larger cage. However, one guinea pig can also benefit from more space.
If you think that you might be getting another guinea pig in the future, then it is a good idea to purchase a big enough cage the first time.
You can also purchase a cage that can be expanded later on or attached to an additional habitat.
Ideally, you should aim for larger than the minimum size requirements. But, if your schedule allows for you to take your guinea pigs out and exercise them in a larger space multiple times a day, the minimum size should be enough.
To sum things up, when it comes to guinea pig cages, bigger is better, so look for the biggest guinea pig cage you can find in your price range!
Products included in this article were carefully and independently selected by the Squeaks and Nibbles team. If you decide to make a purchase from one of the links marked by an asterisk, we may earn a small commission on that sale. This is at no extra cost to you.
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References and Resources
- Quesenberry, K. E. (et al), ‘Providing a Home for a Guinea Pig’, Merck Veterinary Manual
- ‘Guinea Pig Care Sheet’, UC Davis, VMTH
- ‘Guinea pig housing’, The Humane Society of the United States
- Kuhnen, G. ‘The Effect of Cage Size and Enrichment on Core Temperature and Febrile Response of the Golden Hamster’, Laboratories Animals (1999)