Do Guinea Pigs REALLY Bite? 19 Reasons Why!

Do Guinea Pigs REALLY Bite? Do you have a pet guinea pig and are wondering if they bite or not? What causes Guinea pigs to bite, and why do they bite?What can you do to prevent them from biting humans in general, and what can you do to treat your wound if one bites you.

Do guinea pigs bite? That is a question that many people ask when they first get their little furry friends. The answer to this question depends on the personality of each individual guinea pig and how it was raised and its environmental factors.

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This blog post will help you to determine if your pet is more likely than others to bite and what you can do about it!

Guinea pigs can be a little bit fussy and do not like unexpected things happening. They are quite sensitive to touch, noise and smell, so it is best to be careful when handling them.

With that being said, they will bite if they feel threatened or in a stressful situation. 

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Do Guinea Pigs Bite?

The answer to this question is a yes! While the average guinea pig might not be as aggressive as a hamster or gerbil, they do have teeth and could potentially hurt you if provoked. Their bite, though, is more of a nibble most of the time and is not the puncture wound creating sort.

Guinea pigs bite. OK, that’s not a secret or anything, but it is something you need to know and be prepared for.

But still, if your pet doesn’t like being handled, this could be an issue. Your best bet is to try and figure out what might trigger them (e.g., certain handling techniques) so you can avoid those things as much as possible .

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This also means avoiding any situations where they might feel threatened/ unsafe/ uncomfortable in general . For example: sudden movements, loud noises (even if not directed at them), and even people who they are not familiar with.

If your pet bites while trying to get away from something that makes them stressed out, then all you have to do is give them some space for awhile. Do NOT get them back until they are calm and relaxed again. It is better if you wait a bit before trying to handle or interact with them so that they can settle down .

Biting in this case is their way of saying “leave me alone” because it’s how they interpret the situation. If your pet gets defensive when being touched, then try using soft brushes instead of hands (and vice versa). Over time, he will learn what different types of touch feel like and understand that not all human contact means danger! 

Let’s check out in detail some of the reasons why the guinea pig may be biting you!

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List Of Reasons Why Guinea Pigs Bite

There are several reasons why your pet may be biting you.The reasons why a guinea pig bites are important to know, don’t you think? Each case has different circumstances, so it’s not as simple as saying they all do the same thing.

There are many things that can influence their behavior and what triggers them at any given time . In most instances, though, biting will happen as a form of self-defense if something poses harm to them or makes the animal anxious in some way.

Sometimes there may be no clear reason behind it but rather an instinctive response from your pet . Do NOT take this personally, because it doesn’t mean they dislike you – try looking at it from their perspective instead 🙂

Here’s a list of 19 of the most common triggers: – 

  1. Improper Introduction To Humans: You didn’t properly introduce/handle them and now they’re afraid (most commonly seen in young pups, but it is still possible with adults as well). If a guinea pig isn’t properly introduced (or re-introduced) to humans and doesn’t understand how to behave around us, then biting can happen more easily.
  • Change In Routine:This can also happen if their routine changes drastically without prior notice or reason . They may have been handled a certain way for a long time and now it is suddenly different. If you notice your pet biting more often than usual, take a look at their behavior to see if something has changed recently .
  • Hormonal Changes: Do guinea pigs bite more during certain times of the day? Do they do it when you first wake up in the morning or after a nap ? They may be going through their puberty stage and are frustrated due to hormonal changes.
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  • Injury : Guinea pig bites can also be related to an injury on your hand, especially if that’s where he is biting most often . If there is any foreign object stuck between his teeth (e.g., string), then this could cause pain as well, which would make him want to bite you!
  • Poor Nutrition: Do guinea pigs bite when they are hungry? If your pet is not getting the nutrients he needs, then this could be another reason why he’s acting out . Guinea pig bites can also happen if there is a lack of vitamin C or protein in their diet.
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  • Uncertainty: Guinea pigs do not like uncertainty and will bite if they feel threatened. This means when you’re handling them or doing anything that might harm/hurt them in any way . Do NOT force your guinea pig to let you touch him by holding his mouth shut with your hands (or other body parts). You don’t want to accidentally hurt him while trying to get away from danger.

This also applies during grooming sessions, but make sure the piggie doesn’t have mites before starting on a treatment plan. If he does, consult with an expert first! 

  • Change In Diet Or Environment : Sometimes changes happen without us noticing, and they end up affecting our pets. They might not be getting enough nutrients, they could have a new cage that doesn’t feel the same as their old one, or something similar .

This can actually lead to all kinds of issues with your guinea pig , including biting. So if you notice any weird changes in behavior (including biting), take a look at what’s going on in their environment first before anything else!

  • Tiredness : If your guinea pig isn’t feeling well, then he’ll probably want some space instead of being handled as normal . You also run into this problem when using a lot of treats for training or when trying to use food as a reward.

If your guinea pig is tired, he will be less interested in being handled . Do NOT force him to do anything if you see signs that suggest it’s not the right time (such as yawning). Not only does this make things worse, but you also risk hurting them. If they feel threatened, then biting can happen easily!   

  • Sensitivity: Do you know how to properly hold and touch them? If not, they may feel uncomfortable because it’s different than what they’re used to. This is especially common when handling new guinea pigs, but can also happen with older pups who are more sensitive.
  • Not Enough Time Spent With Them/Boredom: If your Guinea pig isn’t getting enough attention/ interaction throughout the day AND something happens to upset it, then biting could happen more often than usual .
  • Stressful Situations Or Unexpected Touching: As mentioned before, Guinea pigs are generally very anxious animals . They don’t like being in stressful or sudden situations, so if this happens – no matter the reason why – then expect a bite. It is just their way of reacting/protecting themselves!
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  • Strangers Or Vistors Interaction: If you have visitors over that try to interact with them, this could result in the animal being frightened into defending itself. Do not let strangers interact with your pet! Do you really want a surprise guest to find out the hard way that guinea pigs bite?
  • Handling: If you’re holding them in an uncomfortable position or they don’t like how YOU are handling THEM, then this could lead to biting. You need to be gentle and patient when holding any pet. It is likely that if it doesn’t feel right for them, they will try and defend themselves in one way or another .
  • Environment:How frequently do you clean their cages?Do you keep noise levels down so as not to bother them too much? Is there anything new suddenly introduced into their environment because of what might scare them ? Environmental factors go a long way in influencing them to indulge in biting.
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  • Health: If the animal isn’t feeling well or it’s in pain, this can result in frustration towards their human family members. So, before engaging in any kind of interaction, always make sure they appear healthy!It takes just a few seconds but could save you from getting nipped at by your own cavy.If something seems off book an appointment with your vet.
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  • Your Hands Smell Of Food: Sometimes a guinea pig might bite its owner because it’s able to smell food on their hand (even if there isn’t any visible). Do NOT feed your pet after you’ve handled ANY other animals or their food. Wash your hands thoroughly to ensure that all food and other odours are completely removed from your hands.
  • They Want To Pee : Guinea pigs do not have any other way of communicating with you. When they have an urgent need to pee or relieve themselves, they will bite you to let you know that they need to be returned to their cage.

Do not hold them when they need to pee. Do NOT take the piggy away from its potty area either . If you do, then your pet will likely bite to let you know that it needs to go back there instead!

  • They Are Grooming You : If you notice that your cavy is nibbling on your hands, arms, or clothes, then this means they are grooming you. Do NOT take it personally! Guinea pigs do not bite for any aggressive reasons, so if they nip at you while doing this, it is because they love you.
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  • They’re Having Fun: Don’t misinterpret their play-biting as an attempt to harm you!If the animal feels like playing (or wants attention), then he will use his teeth in ways similar to how kittens bat with their paws .

Again, if your piggie bites often, then check out the suggestions below on what you can do about it! These little guys aren’t naturally aggressive animals, so there must be a reason why they keep biting you .

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List Of Steps To Take To Prevent Guinea Pigs From Biting

  • Don’t Leave Them Alone:Do not leave your pet alone for long periods of time. Guinea pigs are social animals and they get disturbed if kept isolated for longer periods of time.

  • Keep Noise Levels Down So As Not To Annoy It :Keep noise levels down so as not to annoy it . Guinea pigs don’t like loud noises at all.

  • Don’t Force Interact When They Are Sleeping:Do not try to force interaction with them while they are stressed, sleepy or hungry.

  • Don’t Startle Them:Do not surprise them suddenly – this will cause fear and might lead to biting!

  • Don’t Handle Them When They are Stresed:Do not try to handle your guinea pig when they are in a bad mood or stressed out.

  • Give Them Attention:Do give your pet enough attention/interaction throughout the day AND something that is relaxing too.

  • Get Regular Health Checkups: Make sure that all necessary health checks are performed on a regular basis to keep things in check.

  • Don’t Allow Unsupervised Visitor Interaction:Do not allow visitors to play with your pet without you being there.

  • Keep Their Environment Clean :Make sure their environment is clean, fresh, and new smells are introduced gradually over time, so as to avoid surprising the animals too much . If possible, get two pigs if this will help ease their anxiety levels .

  • Handle Them Gently:Do not pick them up roughly or unexpectedly. Be gentle and patient with all your pets at all times!

  • Wash Your Hands:Thoroughly wash your hands before putting them near the piggie. Also, ensure that there is no food odour on you whatsoever.

  • Lift Them Up In The Right Way:Do NOT pick them up by their tail or hind legs!

How Do I Treat My Wound If Guinea Pig Bites Me?

If your guinea pig bites, there are several things that can happen depending on the severity of it. Here’s some information about how to deal with each type: –  

The first and most important thing is to remain calm! Do not panic and try and figure out what might have caused this (e.g., handling). Your pet may feel intimidated or simply uncomfortable, which could lead them to nip at you.

– Wash the area with clean water and soap thoroughly to remove any dirt or debris from the bite . Do NOT scrub as this can increase bleeding.

– Apply pressure on top of the injury using some streamlined gauze or cotton ball for about five minutes if it’s bleeding.

Do keep an eye out for signs of infection like swelling, pain , excessive redness, etc.. These are indicators that medical help might be required, so go see a vet immediately!

If you have an open wound or are worried about infection, seek medical attention immediately . Do not ignore this as it could result in serious health complications.

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Wrapping Up

Guinea pigs are adorable little creatures, but they do have their moments. When they feel threatened or stressed out, guinea pigs may bite you! If your pet is acting strangely and seems to be biting more than usual, it could actually be a sign of an illness like dental problems, which can lead to toothaches and pain.

The next time your pet bites you without warning, try calming him down first with treats before handling him again, so he doesn’t think there’s another person trying to hurt him. Do not panic and simply remain calm so as to comfort your pet and avoid making things worse!

However, there are many other reasons why guinea pigs may bite, including hunger, illness, stress, etc. If you notice something different about your guinea pig that you can’t understand, then please consult your vet as soon as possible for help.



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