Inexperienced owners of fluffy rodents often wonder how to determine the sex of a guinea pig at home, whether it is male vs. female guinea pig.
After all, the sex characteristics of these animals are so difficult to distinguish that sellers of pet stores or qualified veterinarians sometimes cannot cope with such a task.
What are the ways to determine the sex of a cute marine pet, and what character traits are inherent in female and male guinea pigs?
To find the answer, you should keep reading because it will present the answers; therefore, let us look further.
Table of Contents
- 10 Differences Between Male And Female Guinea Pig
- Why Is It Important To Know The Gender Of Your Guinea Pig Before Buying?
- A neighborhood With Another Guinea Pig
- Who Is Better – A Boy Or A Girl?
- Difference Of Genitals Between Male And Female Guinea Pigs
- Aggression Of Male And Female Guinea Pigs
- Smell Difference Between Genders
- Weight And Size
- What Are The Differences Of A Small Guinea Pig?
- Features Of The Appearance Of Female And Male Guinea Pigs
- What Age Are Differences More Visible In Guinea Pig Genders?
- When Do Male And Female Guinea Pig Reach Puberty?
- Final Thoughts
10 Differences Between Male And Female Guinea Pig
Here are the 10 differences between a male and female guinea pig.
Why Is It Important To Know The Gender Of Your Guinea Pig Before Buying?
Well, for the right choice of name, of course.
This time, and two – so that it turns out that the two beautiful females that you bought are, in fact, a female and a male, and bam – replenishment soon!
To avoid such unpleasant surprises, it is better to learn how to determine the sex of guinea pigs on your own, not blindly trusting the “authoritative” statements of sellers in a pet store.
It is often difficult, especially in small piglets, to determine the sex with 100% accuracy.
Sometimes even experienced veterinarians make mistakes when identifying a male or female at such a young age.
But this is an important point, especially if you have several guinea pigs and you are not going to breed them.
Guinea pigs become sexually mature at 6 to 8 weeks of age (some earlier), so if the guinea pigs are not reared, they will start to mate and reproduce.
This is why it is important to separate males from females approximately three to four weeks after birth.
A neighborhood With Another Guinea Pig
When male guinea pigs are in a cage with another male, constant games and competitions occur, which can end in a fight and injury.
So, it is not recommended to have two or more male guinea pigs in one cage because the chance of fighting increases and so increases the chance of injuring your guinea pig.
In the case of girl guinea pigs, they get along well with other girl pigs, but there is a chance of rare fights, which are not excluded.
So it is not advisable to keep three or more female guinea pigs in one cage as there is a big risk of fighting and getting more aggressive.
After some time, if in these conditions, there is a chance that the guinea pig will attack even the owner itself.
If you want to buy 2 pigs, you should buy same-sex animals.
For those who want to breed guinea pigs, you can take a couple – a boy and a girl, but only keep them in different cages and put the female to the male-only during mating.
Otherwise, there may be problems with an unplanned pregnancy.
Who Is Better – A Boy Or A Girl?
A high level of sociality distinguishes pigs, so it is desirable to keep these rodents in a group.
It can include heterosexual individuals, but more often, they contain a pair of pigs of the same sex, or they have only one rodent.
Therefore, the question that often arises when buying a guinea pig is a boy or a girl, who to choose?
Males are bolder and more curious, they are distinguished by activity, contact, and therefore they will require more attention.
It is better to choose such a pet for a child, while adults cannot always find enough time to play and communicate with the animal.
It would be best to consider that males could fight for power when kept in a same-sex couple.
Females are more careful, less sociable, so they are less disturbed by their owners.
Difference Of Genitals Between Male And Female Guinea Pigs
Pigs do not like to lie on their backs for a long time, so you have little time for research.
If the pig breaks out of your hands, ask someone to help you hold it, it will be much more convenient, or give your pig a treat.
While she is busy chewing, there will be a lot to consider!
Female genitals usually have a smooth swelling in the genital area; use your fingers to spread the genital opening gently.
If the genital area is Y- or V-shaped (or a vertical slit), this is a female.
The genitals of males have a genital opening in the form of a small round dot with a penis that protrudes above the surrounding skin level (instead of the vulva of a female guinea pig, which is flush with the skin).
The foreskin is raised and rounded, like a button or dome, and in the center is a punctate opening (urethra).
If you press lightly above the genital opening, males will show a penis.
If you feel a ridge over the genitals, this is a clear sign that this is a male.
If you also found the testicles on either side of the penis, then there is no doubt – the male.
In male guinea pigs, the scrotum is not a convex “sac of testicles” located just above the penis, as is the case with most other male animals.
In male pigs, they are too large to fit comfortably on the small patch of skin between the anus and the penis.
Instead, they sit just under the skin next to the anus and penis (one testicle on each side).
This lateral arrangement of the guinea pig testicles causes all-male guinea pig’s genitals and anal regions to appear bulging outward.
If you grab one of the bulges on the side of the penis area, you can feel a hard, smooth testicle under the skin that moves freely back and forth under the skin (it is not fixed in the scrotum like in dogs, cats, and other animals).
The guinea pig can retract the testicles into the abdomen if desired.
Aggression Of Male And Female Guinea Pigs
A female dissatisfied with courtship often defends herself from an annoying male.
Her defensive reaction is that she has doused the insolent person with a stream of urine and starts to run.
She succeeds because the male pauses for a moment to sniff himself.
Several energetic jumps of an angry female can also discourage a male from flirting.
A sign of reconciliation is the opening of the most delicate parts of the body by the mumps, those parts that are most easily injured.
Many other species of animals behave similarly.
The pig stands on fully straightened paws and throws its head up, revealing its muzzle and neck.
Such poses are adopted by individuals subject to the influence of their stronger companions and males concerning their partners.
Guinea pigs are sociable animals, and they feel best in a company.
Keeping a larger number of these small, cute rodents provides an opportunity to get acquainted with their herd behavior.
It allows you to observe the various morals that can manifest only when the pig feels safe surrounded by its relatives.
For a pig, contained in the singular, only a person can be a friend, and he must pay a lot of attention to her so that she does not feel lonely.
Smell Difference Between Genders
This is a widespread misconception; one of the distinctive characteristics of guinea pigs is that boys do not mark their territory with a smell, and girls do not see, at first glance, signs of estrus.
If there is no female nearby, then the male does not show that he is a male by themselves, pigs in nature are victims of predators.
They have neither claws nor a large mouth to defend themselves, and even they do not run so fast; therefore, their main protection is disguise.
Including the lack of a smell that they can give themselves out, an unpleasant smell does not appear from the pig itself but the recorded sawdust.
If the pig lives in a clean environment, it does not normally have pronounced unpleasant odors in males or females.
There may be odors in the pig, which is sick.
A male guinea pig’s anatomy suggests a “fecal pocket,” despite its name, and it normally contains only whitish grease and glitter particles.
The lubricant itself has a specific smell, but since the male keeps the pocket closed in the normal state, we do not feel it.
A healthy male usually deals with the hygiene of this part of the body independently.
But at the moment of courting a female, she tries to open her pocket wider, and this is where you can smell a specific smell.
However, if there is no intention to engage in breeding, this fate will pass you) When two males meet, they can also demonstrate “male behavior” to each other and make trial cages.
By the way, opening a pocket is accompanied by a characteristic “rumbling, rattling.”
In the future, after finding out who is who and the main hog in the company, courtship stops.
Males in bulk have a brighter breed type and exterior.
In long-haired breeds, males have a clean train, and females have filthy hair behind.
This is due to the structure of the genital organs in pigs: females pee down and males forward into the litter.
Weight And Size
The weight of a guinea pig is one of the most important indicators of its well-being and health.
If you track and control your pets’ weight over time, you can see if they are developing normally or have unusual weight changes.
If their weight undergoes unusual changes, you will understand this time and take the necessary action to correct the situation.
As they grow and mature, your guinea pigs should gradually and consistently gain weight.
In the first months of life, guinea pigs gain from 30 to 50 grams of weight every week, and then the gain gradually decreases and stops at the age of 12 to 14 months.
During this period, males will become noticeably larger than females, and this is quite natural.
Usually, females are 20-25% smaller than males.
You can also tell your sex by the size and weight of your guinea pig.
Males are larger than females, their weight varies from one to one and a half kilograms, and their body length is 30–35 centimeters.
Females weigh approximately 800-1200 grams and are 20-25 centimeters long.
The size of a guinea pig depends on age and breed, so this method cannot be considered 100 percent correct.
You can only use it as an additional indicator to verify your conclusion.
After reaching one year of age, adult guinea pigs weigh from 0.9 to 1.2 kg for males and from 700 to 900 grams for females.
The final weight depends on many factors, the main of which is the breed of the animal.
Again, if the mumps’ weight slightly exceeds or falls short of these limits, this is not a cause for concern.
Some guinea pigs may be slightly smaller or slightly larger than their standard sizes, as with all animals.
However, if you still have any doubts, then you should consult your veterinarian.
What Are The Differences Of A Small Guinea Pig?
In the boy’s intimate area, a tubercle is clearly visible from the penis retracted inside.
In girls, a triangle can be seen on the genitals.
Also, there are more skin folds on the genitals of a male baby than on newborn females.
You can also determine a boy or girl by observing the development of the cubs.
Until the age of one week, babies of both sexes develop the same way, but boys grow and gain weight much faster than girls after the first week of life.
Features Of The Appearance Of Female And Male Guinea Pigs
You can distinguish a boy and a girl of guinea pigs by external data or by observing pets’ behavior.
Girls are smaller and more graceful in physique; females weigh from 1 to 1.2 kilograms.
You can determine a boy or girl by the size of the head, the head of males is slightly more massive than that of females.
Due to an odorous gland in the anal sac, the feces of males have a sharper and more unpleasant odor than the feces of females.
Guinea pig boys behave more aggressively than females and tend to exhibit a dominant position, which is especially noticeable if several different sexes live in one cage.
Females are calmer and friendlier than males and show aggression only in exceptional cases, such as protecting their cubs.
When kept in the same cage, males constantly compete for food, territory, and females, and they can start noisy fuss and fights, however, without causing serious injury to the enemy.
Peaceful and calm girls will get along well in one cage, be friends with each other, share food and even sleep in the same house.
Unlike females, who practically do not make any sounds, males are more talkative and show their emotions with loud rumbling or displeased hooting.
Girls sleep or rest in the house most of the time.
What Age Are Differences More Visible In Guinea Pig Genders?
Distinguishing a male guinea pig from a female is not a task that can be done as soon as the animal is born due to its small body size, so it is important to wait a while to examine its genitals.
In general, after two weeks of life, when weaning usually occurs, we can already see the differences between the sexes with the naked eye.
However, while still minimal, it should be noted that incorrect inference is usually common when you are not an expert, as not all animals develop in the same way or at the same time.
Even people dedicated to their care and upbringing can make the mistake of early detection.
So, if you have just adopted a small guinea pig and do not know their gender, it is most appropriate to go to the vet.
For this, especially if you already live with an adult female guinea pig and want to avoid possible pregnancy.
When Do Male And Female Guinea Pig Reach Puberty?
Females usually reach puberty between three to five weeks of life, while males may take another one or two weeks, the usual average being four to six weeks after birth.
However, the fact that they have reached puberty and therefore their genitals are developed does not mean that it is desirable to play them at this time.
Experts recommend waiting around two months for males and five months for females to breed.
All in all, we hope we have presented you with useful information about male vs. female guinea pigs.
Despite this, you have to know the sex of your cute guinea pig pet.
If you are not going to breed guinea pigs but still want your pet not to get bored alone, you should seriously approach the issue of sex determination.
By the way, boys, despite being hyperactive, can easily coexist in the absence of females.
If a guinea pig lives in a single cage, knowing its gender is only necessary to find a suitable nickname.