Adoption at the MSPCA

Interesting Facts About Small Animals

Guinea pigs are native to South America, where they are commonly raised for food (much like chickens are raised in North America).

Female guinea pigs are called sows, males called boars, and babies called pups.

The hamster’s native habitat is the deserts of Asia.

Guinea pigs and humans can't make their own vitamin C, so they must have it supplemented through their diet.

In the wild, guinea pigs live in groups of 5-10.

A young Guinea pig can run when it is only three hours old!

A human year is equal to 25 hamster years.

Gerbils are native to India, Africa and Asia.

Gerbils will thump both hind legs on the ground when excited.

The most common Guinea pig breeds are the American (short smooth coat), Abyssinian (short coat with rosettes) and the Peruvian (long haired); a wide variety of coat colors are seen.

Hamsters cannot swim and therefore do not need baths - they clean themselves without any difficulty.

Pet rats are not like their wild cousins. Pet rats are actually very lovable, affectionate, and one of the most intelligent rodent pets. They can be taught tricks, and they can even learn to help keep their cages clean.

Guinea pigs are born with their eyes open and all their fur.

Guinea pigs communicate with one another by making sounds - there are 13 distinct sounds a guinea pig makes.

Currently, there are 13 breeds of guinea pig recognized by the American Cavy Breeders Association (an organization that sanctions guinea pig shows in the United States).

Baby hamsters are called 'puppies'.

Hamsters cannot swim and therefore do not need baths - they clean themselves without any difficulty anyway.

Hamsters are color blind.

Gerbils require little water as they do not sweat.

A group of gerbils is called a business, a male is a hob, and a female is a jill.