An adult guinea pig is a small animal, 250-300 mm long, weighing 500-900 g with a varied coat color.
The vertebral column of guinea pigs consists of 36-37 vertebrae, of which 7 are cervical, 13 pectoral, 6 lumbar, 4 sacral and 6-7 caudal. There are 13 ribs in the chest, of which 6 are true and 7 are false. The sternum consists of 5 late soldering parts, with the hilt and xiphoid process fused only in old animals.
Dental formula: I 1/1, C 0/0, Pm 1/1, M 3/3. All teeth - 20.
The masticatory surface of the molars in pigs is provided with low, blunt tubercles.
The front legs are shorter and have four toes, the hind legs - three toes.
The bone system in a guinea pig reaches its maturity at the age of seven months.
In the back of the abdomen there is one pair of mammary glands.
Nervous system. Guinea pigs weighing 250-650 g of the cerebral hemisphere of the following sizes — length — 20–25, width — 11–13, height — 13–16 mm. The mass of the brain is 2.8 g (in pigs weighing 500 g - 3.2 g). The mass of the spinal cord, respectively - 1-1.3 g.
Guinea pig, unlike other representatives of the rodent order, has some features. So, there are only 20 teeth, which are already in newborns. Of these, four incisors - two on the upper and two on the lower jaw. Fangs are missing. Four premolars and twelve molars. The chewing surface of molars - molars and premolars is covered with tubercles.
The body of guinea pigs is cylindrical. The front legs are shorter than the hind legs and have four fingers, while the hind legs have only three.
In the back of the abdomen, a female guinea pig has one pair of mammary glands.
Guinea pig compared with other rodents is born with the most developed brain. By the time of birth, she ends the morphological development of the structures of the cerebral cortex. The nervous system of newborns is able to provide adaptability to independent life.
The heart of adult guinea pigs weighs 2.0-2.5 g. The average heart rate is 250-355 per minute. The cardiac impulse is weak, diffuse. The morphological composition of the blood is as follows: 5 million red blood cells per 1 mm3, hemoglobin - 2%, 8-10 thousand white blood cells per 1 mm3.
The lungs of guinea pigs are sensitive to mechanical stress and the action of infectious agents (viruses, bacteria). The respiratory rate is normal 80-130 times per minute.
A little about the physiology of guinea pigs
There are many breeds that differ in length, color and texture of wool. Therefore, all breeds are divided into several groups: short-haired smooth-haired (selfies, American teddy, Abyssinian), long-haired wire-haired (Sheltie, Coronet, Peruvian), long-haired curly-haired (Texel, Merino, Alpaca) and hairless (baldins,.
Domestic guinea pigs have ten teeth on each jaw: two incisors, six molars and two false-rooted teeth. The incisors, like other rodents, grow throughout the life of the mumps, and quite quickly, therefore, in order to grind them, the animal must always have a fruit tree twig in the cage. Otherwise, the teeth will grow so much that the pet will not be able to close its mouth normally, and protruding incisors will injure the delicate gums.
A little about the physiology of guinea pigs
|Birth weight||50-110 g|
|Body weight of an adult animal||700-1000 (1800) g|
|Female maturity||30 days|
|The maturity of males||60 days|
|Cycle duration||16 days|
|Pregnancy duration||(60) -65- (70) days|
|Number of cubs||1-5|
|Maturity for reproduction||3 months|
|Uterine weaning age||14-21 days (weight 160 g)|
|Body length||24-30 cm|
|Life expectancy||4-8 years old|
|Body temperature||37-39 ° C|
|Blood volume||5-7 ml / 100 g weight|
|Red blood cells||4,5-7x106 / 1 cube mm|
|Hemoglobin||11-15 g / 100 ml|
|White blood cells||5-12x103 / 1 cc mm|
The leukocyte count in the blood increases with age. ROE in one hour - 2 mm in two hours - 2.5 mm. These average values of the main parameters of the blood of guinea pigs are useful for owners to know.
Differential blood picture (hemogram)
|Bilirubin||0.24-0.30 mg / dl|
|Glucose||50-120 mg / 100 ml|
The gastrointestinal tract is well developed and, as in other herbivores, is relatively large. The volume of the stomach is 20-30 cm3. It is always full of food. The intestine reaches a length of 2.3 m and is 10-12 times longer than the body. Guinea pigs have a well-developed excretory system. An adult animal secretes 50 ml of urine containing 3.5% uric acid.
|The amount of feces per day||up to 0.1 kg|
|Water content in feces||70%|
|The amount of urine per day||0.006-0.03 L|
|The relative density of urine||1,010-1,030|
Guinea pigs have good hearing and sense of smell. When kept indoors, guinea pigs are calm, easy to train, quickly get used to and recognize the owner. They can be picked up. Possessing good hearing, guinea pigs get used to the voice of the owner, so you need to talk with them more often. However, when exposed to external stimuli unfamiliar to the animal, they are easily excited and are shy.
If necessary, it is good to examine the guinea pig with its left hand behind the back and under the chest so that the thumb and forefinger cover the neck, and the other fingers immobilize the forelimbs and restrict head movements. Hold the back of the body with your right hand.
Guinea pig temperature
The normal body temperature of guinea pigs is in the range of 37.5-39.5 ° C.
An increase in temperature above 39.5 ° C indicates that your pet is sick.
To measure temperature, the animal is held upside down on the left hand. The thumb of the left hand is pressed on the inguinal region so that the anus can be better seen, and the thermometer disinfected and lubricated with petroleum jelly is introduced into the rectum with the right. Enter it in two stages. First, they are held almost vertically, and then lowered to a horizontal position. The thermometer is used as a regular mercury medical or veterinary.
With good care and maintenance, the guinea pig lives up to eight to ten years.
However, like any living creature, guinea pig is susceptible to infectious and invasive diseases. It is necessary to create good sanitary and hygienic conditions of detention, good nutrition, and prevent crowding of animals. It must be remembered that guinea pig is afraid of dampness and drafts.
Having discovered the unusual behavior of the animal - reduced motor activity, the absence of characteristic sounds made by normally healthy animals, you should take a closer look at the guinea pig. If the animal is lethargic, trembling, the hair is ruffled or his breathing is quickened, his appetite, and loose stools are reduced, he must be shown to the veterinarian. The same should be done if an abortion has occurred in a pregnant female.
Guinea pigs are less likely to be affected by helminths than other animals.