When you run out of guinea pigs’ food or can’t provide them with certain food in their diet, you get worried about their health. But, you must find an alternative food for them. So, the question is, What to feed guinea pigs when out of food?
When you are out of guinea pig’s food feed your guinea pigs hay, fresh grass, or green leafy vegetables which are commonly found and safe for their health. You can also offer them some fruits. But, they shouldn’t stay very long without food.
Let’s know about some healthy alternatives to regular food for guinea pigs that you can feed them.
21 Alternative foods for guinea pigs when out of food
Normally guinea pigs’ food that’s available in pet stores is called pellets. But, the most important food in their diet chart is hay and veggies.
Here are the things to feed the guinea pigs when out of pet food.
1. Hay and its alternative
If you run out of regular guinea pigs’ food, you must ensure that they don’t run out of hay at any cost.
This is the primary food for them and great forage for them.
You need to supply it constantly in an unlimited quantity even when you give them other food.
But when you can’t offer them other food, hay becomes more important for them.
Hay provides them with plenty of fiber and maintains their digestive system.
But, the most important factor is that it controls the growth of their continuously growing teeth.
Timothy and orchard grass hay are the most commonly used hay to feed your piggies.
But, what if you run out of regular hay?
You can also give them meadow hay if you don’t have these hays.
Oat hay can be a good option for 2-3 meals.
You can also feed a substitute for hay such as fresh grass, dried grass, or hay from farmers or other alternatives.
Check out all alternative ideas to Hay for guinea pigs.
2. Fresh grass
When you are out of guinea pig food, you can feed them fresh grass from your backyard or garden.
It offers various nutrients including high fibers, protein, vitamins, and minerals. It also helps control their teeth growth just like hay.
However, you have to ensure it doesn’t contain any lawn chemicals, pesticides, fertilizers, animal toilet, weeds, clipping, or harmful plants. Don’t give them wet grass as well.
Check out our other article on fresh grass for guinea pigs.
3. Romaine Lettuce
One of the best vegetables that you can use when you run out of guinea pig food is Romaine or Cos lettuce.
It’s better than other lettuce as it contains higher amounts of fibers and vitamin C.
This nutritious vegetable is also low in calories.
Interesting factors lettuce is a favorite food of your piggies.
So, when you put that inside the cage you can see that they eat it so fast.
However, you cannot feed them too much of it as feeding too much can lead to sedation.
Carrots are one of the most popular vegetables that you can offer the guinea pigs when you don’t have their regular food.
This alternative vegetable has an adequate amount of vitamin A, vitamin C, fibers, and beta-carotene.
Guinea pigs can’t produce their own vitamins and carrots can help do that. It also helps in their healthy growth and enhances their digestive system.
It also has anti-oxidants that maintain the body and fight diseases.
Even when your little pig is out of their food, they love carrots as it’s delicious food for them.
You can serve this once or twice times a week as a treat. Moreover, you shouldn’t give them not more than 2 baby carrots a day.
5. Sweet potatoes
When you are out of guinea pig food, you can alternative sweet potatoes to them.
This vegetable contains fiber, vitamin C, potassium, and other important nutrients.
Potassium is good for your guinea pig’s heart. It maintains their blood pressure.
You can provide them with sweet potatoes 1-2 times a week. Ensure that you serve it raw in a small cube or two per day.
Cucumber is a refreshing alternative for guinea pigs when you don’t have their regular food.
This vegetable is packed with fiber, vitamins, minerals, and high water content.
Cucumber helps to hydrate your little pigs as it’s juicy. So, it can be a good option for a hot day.
You can offer them this vegetable 1-2 times a week as a treat.
However, make sure that they don’t overconsume it because it will upset their stomach such as diarrhea, vomiting, and bloating.
As it also contains a little amount of calcium, excess intake can lead to bladder stones.
Broccoli is another good alternative food for guinea pigs. It is high in fiber and low in sugar, which makes it a perfect choice for your little pig’s diet.
Broccoli is also a good source of antioxidants, vitamins C, B5, and A. You can give the guinea pig broccoli florets or chopped broccoli.
It also has a high amount of calcium and iron.
Just make sure that the broccoli is not too hard for the guinea pig to eat.
However, you have to ensure that they are not eating it more than 2-3 times per week.
In addition, you can serve a tablespoon a day.
As it contains oxalate and calcium, overconsumption of it can cause stones.
Cauliflower is a low-calorie alternative to other vegetables like carrots and celery.
It also contains fiber, which can aid in guinea pig digestion.
The high amount of Vitamin C presented within cauliflower can help prevent scurvy.
They will also get phytonutrients, other important vitamins, and minerals from it.
When feeding cauliflower to a guinea pig, make sure to remove the leaves and stem first. You can then give them small pieces of the florets to eat.
You should give it in raw form as it contains more nutrients.
As cauliflower contains calcium, the guinea pig can have it once or twice a week.
One alternative food you can feed a guinea pig is kale. Kale is high in fiber and vitamin C, both of which are important for guinea pigs.
Kale is also a great source of vitamin A and Vitamin K. Moreover, it contains very low sugar and fat.
Make sure to wash the kale thoroughly before feeding it to the guinea pig.
However, give them only one or two leaves.
You can also mix kale with other vegetables to make a healthy and nutritious meal for a guinea pig.
Spinach is good alternative food for guinea pigs. It is rich in vitamins c, fibers, and minerals.
That means, it can help provide the guinea pig with the nutrients they need.
However, spinach is also high in oxalates and calcium, which can cause problems for guinea pigs.
Oxalate can lead to urinary stones and calcium can cause bladder stones.
Feed spinach to the guinea pig in moderation, and always consult with a veterinarian before making any changes to your little pig’s diet.
You can offer guinea pigs this vegetable 1-2 times a week and a very few leave a day.
Celery is another alternative food you can feed your guinea pig. Celery is high in fiber and vitamin C, both of which are important for guinea pigs.
When feeding celery to a guinea pig, make sure to remove the strings from the celery. These strings can get caught in the guinea pigs’ teeth and cause them pain.
It contains oxalates that can cause the urinary stone to them.
You should not provide them celery not more than 2-3 times a week to prevent bladder stone and urinary tract problems.
12. Bell Peppers
Bell peppers are a great alternative food for guinea pigs. They are high in vitamins and minerals, as well as a rich source of fiber.
It’s low in calories and rich in Vitamin C which makes it a great food for guinea pigs.
Bell peppers come in a variety of colors, so you can choose the one that the guinea pig likes best.
As bell peppers are packed with vitamin A and antioxidants, it helps fight reduce inflammation and boost immunity as well.
Just be sure to remove the seeds before feeding them to a guinea pig.
However, the orange brighter red variety offers more Vitamin C than the green and yellow variety.
You can serve a guinea pig one to two tablespoons of pepper per day and 2-3 times per week.
Oranges are an excellent source of Vitamin C for guinea pigs and can help to prevent scurvy.
They’re also high in fiber, which is beneficial to intestinal health.
Your guinea pig will also get Vitamin B-6 and vitamin A which will help in their growth and improve their metabolism.
However, oranges contain a lot of sugar so should only be given as a treat and in moderation.
This is another alternative food for guinea pigs is tomatoes. Tomatoes are high in Vitamin C and fibers.
It is good for your little pig’s digestive system and can also help enhance its immune system.
Just be sure to remove the seeds, stems, and leaves before feeding them to your little pig.
So, that means, you have to remove all green parts to make it safe for your piggies.
However, stay away from green tomatoes as they are acidic.
Apples are safe for guinea pigs to eat, however, they should only be given as an occasional treat.
Apples contain small amounts of Vitamin C and are a good source of dietary fiber.
Just be sure to remove the seeds and core before feeding them to your guinea pig.
In addition, apples contain sugar and so excess of it can lead to digestive issues and gain weight as well.
So, make sure that you provide them with a small piece of it.
Blueberries are also safe for guinea pigs to eat and are a good source of Vitamin C, Vitamin K, antioxidants, high fiber, and low in calories.
Blueberries can be given to the guinea pig fresh or frozen.
As it is acidic and contains a high amount of sugar, you should offer them in very small amounts.
Watermelon is a refreshing alternative food for guinea pigs. It is high in water content and contains minerals, vitamins A, and C.
It can a great food for them in the summer season due to its high water content.
Remove the seeds and rind before feeding watermelon to the guinea pig.
The potassium of watermelon can help protect your guinea pig from kidney stones.
However, don’t feed it more than once a week and every time give it a very small amount to prevent digestion problems.
Guinea pigs can eat bananas as a treat. However, they should only eat a small amount due to the high sugar content.
Too much sugar can cause weight gain and digestive issues in guinea pigs. Excess consumption can also result in an upset stomach.
Bananas are a good source of vitamin C, potassium, and fiber.
You can feed the guinea pigs both banana and banana skin without any issue and both are nutritious.
Ensure that, you don’t feed it more than 1-2 times a week.
Strawberries are a safe alternative food for guinea pigs to eat. They are a good source of Vitamin C and can help boost a guinea pig’s immune system.
It is also high in water and has a good amount of antioxidants.
Your little pig can have it once or twice a week in a small portion.
Squash is one of the alternative vegetables that you can give your piggies when you don’t have their regular food.
Butternut squash and zucchini are two common types of squash that you get in the market.
These vegetables are rich in fiber, vitamins, and minerals, and low in calories.
Usually, it contains less vitamin C, which is required for your guinea pigs.
However, it has low calcium which is good for your little pigs as they can cause health issues.
Summer squash is better than winter squash as it contains more vitamin C and less calcium.
You can offer them this vegetable 1-2 times a week as a treat.
However, you have to give them less than 100 gm per day.
21. Other dark green veggies and fruits
Green leafy vegetables are not only an alternative to give its food but should also be used to maintain a balanced diet. However, you have to choose veggies that are safe for their health and provide important nutrients.
Fruits are a great source of minerals and vitamins. So you can give them specific fruits for certain nutrients when you cannot offer them Guinea pigs food or pellets.
Things to consider for when guinea pigs run out of food
There are a few things that you should consider when the guinea pigs run out of food.
1. Provide them with fresh food
You should offer them alternative food that is fresh and not stale. If the vegetables are wilted, it means that they have lost their nutritional values.
Also, know how to leave food out for guinea pigs.
2. Introduce new foods slowly
When you’re introducing any new alternative food, do it slowly. Give them a small portion of it and see how they react to it.
3. Avoid giving them too much sugary food
Sugary foods can cause weight gain and other health issues in guinea pigs. So, it is better to avoid giving them too much of it.
4. Balance their diet
When you’re offering alternative food, make sure that you’re giving them a balanced diet. Their diet should be rich in fiber, vitamins, and minerals.
5. Check for allergies
Before giving any new food, it is better to check if your piggies are allergic to it. Some guinea pigs may be allergic to certain fruits and vegetables. So, it is better to be safe than sorry.
6. Wash the vegetables and fruits properly
Wash the vegetables and fruits thoroughly before giving them to your little pigs. This will remove any pesticides or chemicals that may be present on them.
7. Avoid giving them spicy food
Spicy food can cause indigestion and other digestive problems in guinea pigs. So, it is better to avoid giving them such food.
8. Avoid giving them processed food
Processed food is not good for guinea pigs as it can contain harmful chemicals and preservatives. So, it is better to avoid giving them such food.
9. Avoid giving them fatty food
Fatty food can cause obesity and other health problems in guinea pigs. So, it is better to avoid giving them such food.
10. Avoid giving them moldy food
Moldy food can cause digestive problems in guinea pigs. So, it is better to avoid giving them such food.
11. Consult a veterinarian
If you’re unsure about what alternative food to give your little pigs, it is better to consult a veterinarian. They will be able to advise you on the best course of action.
What can guinea pigs not eat?
There are a few things that guinea pigs cannot eat, and if you’re out of food for them, you’ll need to be careful of what you give them. Here is a list of things that guinea pigs cannot eat:
- dried beans
- corn, and peas
- lilies of any kind
- garden shrubs
- sweet peas
- onion grass
- potato tops
- rhubarb leaves
- dairy products
- breakfast cereals
- pickled foods
- the meat of any kind
What to feed guinea pigs when out of hay?
As a responsible guinea pig owner, it is important to have a backup plan for when your pet runs out of hay. While there are a few options for what to feed guinea pigs when out of hay, it is important to consult with your veterinarian to find the best option for your pet.
One option for what to feed guinea pigs when out of hay is to give them fresh vegetables. However, it is important to note that not all vegetables are safe for guinea pigs to eat. Be sure to consult with a vet or do your research to find out which vegetables are safe for your little pig to eat.
Another option for what to feed guinea pigs when out of hay is to give them pellets. Pellets are a type of food that is specifically made for guinea pigs and other small animals. They are usually made from a variety of different vegetables and grains. If you choose to feed the guinea pig pellets, be sure to get a high-quality pellet that is specifically made for guinea pigs.
If you are unsure of what to feed them when out of hay, be sure to consult with your veterinarian.
Check my other articles on Alternatives to Hay and Timothy Hay.
What to feed guinea pigs when out of pellets?
If you are out of guinea pig pellets, you can feed them hay, vegetables, or fruits. Make sure that the food is fresh and clean.
Check out more about alternatives to pellets for guinea pigs.
What to feed guinea pigs when out of vegetables?
You can feed your guinea pigs hay, pellets, and fruits when out of vegetables. But, make sure that it’s safe for them and offers them adequate nutrients.
Check out more about alternatives to vegetables for guinea pigs.
What to do when guinea pigs stop eating?
If your guinea pigs have stopped eating, first of all, check to see if anything has changed in their surroundings or diet that could be causing them to get irritable. Solve the problem and check whether the problem persists.
If the guinea pig still isn’t eating, it is important to take them to the vet as soon as possible. There are many potential causes for a lack of appetite, some of which can be serious.
However, there are also some simple things that you can do to try and get them eating again.
If your guinea pigs are off their food, try offering them some of their favorite foods.
If they still don’t want to eat, offer them a variety of foods to see if anything tempts them.
You can also try offering them hay, as this is an important part of a guinea pig’s diet.
If they are still not eating, take them to the vet as soon as possible.
When you run out of guinea pigs’ food and can’t provide them with food due to a delay in delivery or some other reason, you shouldn’t keep them hungry. So, offer them alternative food such as fresh grass, vegetables, or fruits to keep them maintain their body and prevent them from getting sick.
Always keep in mind that it’s your responsibility to provide your guinea pigs with everything they need including food.