Minimum Cage Sizes for Guinea Pigs
One of the common questions I receive is what size cage is suitable for guinea pigs. For 1-2 guinea pigs the minimum space recommended is 7.5 square feet. Three guinea pigs require a minimum of 10.5 square feet, and Four guinea pigs require 13 square feet. Below I will go over cages that are commonly bought/used for guinea pigs.
1.Pet Store Bought Cages
Cages that are supposedly designed for guinea pigs or other small animals are rarely actually suitable for them. An example would be a cage that is supposed to be a starter kit for guinea pigs. The dimensions are 30” x 18” which equates to a mere 3.75 square feet. Not even big enough for a single guinea pig. This is a common example of why more research needs to be done prior to bringing a guinea pig home. I, too, made the same mistake when I first got Peanut. However, as soon as I realized how terribly small it must be for her, I upgraded to a bigger cage for my guinea pig. Just because the packaging or name of the product shows/says "guinea pig" doesn’t actually mean it is for them.
2. MidWest Guinea Pig Cage
MidWest Cages is one of the few prebuilt cages that are actually suitable for guinea pigs. It has the dimensions of 47” x 24” with the walls being 14” high. This provides roughly 7.8 Square feet of space which is slightly larger than the minimum requirement for two guinea pigs which is 7.5 square feet. The MidWest cage provides a canvas bottom which is supposed to be washable and supposedly help making care and maintenance easier. The benefits of having this cage is it is already pre-built and is relatively easy to set up. In the case that one cage may not be big enough, you can simply buy another midwest cage and connect them together. A common complaint for these cages is that the fact that it is barely meeting the minimum requirement for two guinea pigs, meaning although it is a cheaper alternative, realistically you’ll need to be buying two of these cages so that a pair of guinea pigs have plenty of space to dwell in. Another issue is this cage is not as sturdy especially without the canvas present. That being said, compared to all the cages that are “designed” for guinea pigs and other small animals, this is a much better option. I personally used midwest cages for a while before I decided to switch over to something much bigger for my three guinea princesses.
3. C&C Guinea Pig Cages
C&C Cages type of cages are sought out by small animal enthusiasts and lovers alike. C&C actually stands for cubes and coroplast because the grids are made from storage cubes, and the bottom plastic for the cage is made of coroplast. C&C cages are completely customizable and can provide the proper living space for any amount of guinea pigs by simply adding more grids. This type of cage can be done alone by buying the grids and coroplast at various places that sell them and cutting and assembling them together, or by buying premade ones from places like Offbeat Club. With the coroplast bottom, it makes it easy to clean since nothing will seep through the bottom, but will be especially easier with a GuineaDad liner. As stated earlier, to expand these cages you simply have to buy more grids to add onto your cage! Another thing to be careful for is if you have other pets at home, then you will have to make a lid for the cage!
Other than these common cages, you can also make your own cage as I have done using Ikea tables providing them (46.5” x 2) x 30.75” equalling roughly 19.9 square feet of space! There are much more different DIY options out there, so if you ever run across a cool one please let me know, I'd love to try new things too!
"More is Better!"
Make sure to do your research and make sure the size of the cage you're buying is actually suitable for the amount of guinea pigs you have. Another thing to keep in mind is that these are based off minimum space requirement, meaning that ideally you would want to provide a cage that is actually bigger than the minimum requirement!