Even if you're feeding your guinea pig hay, veggies, fruit, and even pellets everyday, you may not be feeding them enough vitamin C.
Why should we give vitamin C to guinea pigs?
Vitamin C is essential for guinea pigs! A deficiency can have serious consequences for a guinea pig's health.
It is important to know that the vitamin C in pellet food deteriorates very quickly; typically about 4-5 days after you open the bag, it disappears. Additionally, vitamin levels in fruits and vegetables, especially from supermarkets, deteriorate quickly making it difficult to know how much your pet is actually getting.
Does my guinea pig suffer from vitamin C deficiency?
If you notice that your guinea pig looks tired, doesn't move much or their back legs are becoming paralysed, they might well be suffering from a deficiency. You may also notice that your guinea pig refuses to eat and drink, and that their coat looks unkempt and dry. These are some key signs of vitamin C deficiency.
How can I give vitamin C to my guinea pig?
To make sure the vitamin C intake of your pet is sufficient, you can purchase it in liquid form in pet stores, pharmacies or directly from your vet.
Avoid mixing the liquid with water as it will deteriorate quickly. Use a syringe (without the needle) and put the vitamin C directly into your pet's mouth. You can talk to you vet for some helpful tips if you're worried about doing this.
How much vitamin C should I give to my guinea pig?
You can give 20mg per kilo daily to your adult guinea pig. For growing, pregnant, sick or elderly guinea pigs, you can give up to 60mg per kilo per day.