Just as the name suggests, the white-crested guinea pig has a bold crest of hair on their hair fronts, which is pure white.
The white-crested piggy, also known as the American crested, is entirely one color – apart from its white feature crest on its head.
This makes it easy, especially for beginners, to distinguish this animal from other guinea pigs.
According to the American Cavy Breeders Association (ACBA), the white crest should be at the center of the animal’s forehead.
This breed of a guinea pig is loveable, friendly to children, popular, and easy to take care of.
If you’d love to gift your kid with a pet, the white-crested guinea pig/cavy will be the best choice.
You may be the owner of this little furry creature, or it has captured your attention, or you’re simply a guinea pig lover but we have all the information you need.
What is the Temperament of a White-crested Guinea Pig?
The white-crested guinea pig has a shy temperament but is an intelligent pet and can learn familiar sounds of feeding time and voices.
Any guinea pig owner can be impressed by the calm and sweet personality of these pets.
White-crested guinea cavies are easy to handle breeds of guinea pigs as they have shy and docile personalities.
When you’re first getting them, it may be hard to interact because of their shyness, but they learn and get used to voices very fast.
They enjoy being in a group just like the other breeds of guinea pigs.
When you’re buying, it’s advisable to get a pair, but if this is not possible, make sure you spend time with them and play with them frequently.
Get the same-sex pair of guinea pigs, or you could end up having babies.
White-crested guinea pig colors
This breed has a white crest on its head, but the rest of the coat can vary in color.
This breed comes in various colors such as agouti, roan, self, and brindle, but in most cases, you will see a guinea pig with a golden coat.
How do I Groom my White-crested Guinea Pig?
The white-crested cavy has short hair, which makes it easy to keep and groom.
This breed is easy to take care of compared to other species.
If you own one, then there are a few things that you need to take care of;
Clipping their nails is regular grooming that you need to practice every month.
Guinea pig nails grow very fast just like humans, and if you don’t trim them regularly, they will grow inwards, causing pain to your furry friend and, in some cases, infection.
Curled nails may cause your guinea pig’s walking to be painful and uncomfortable as well.
There are clippers specifically made for clipping your guinea pig nails.
There are rounded blades and straightforward nail or toenail clippers that you can use to trim your guinea pigs’ nails.
Choose that which you find easier and comfortable to work with.
These clippers are suitable for your guinea pig’s nails because they have an extra-large gap compared to human clippers.
When cutting your furry nails, it will be useful to avoid cutting the ‘quick.’
‘Quick’ is the red blood vessel that runs through a guinea pig’s nail, and if you cut it, it will bleed.
White-crested guinea cavies require brushing of their fur and skin every once a week or more.
This will help in maintaining the good health of their skin and fur.
Brushing their fur will help you spot any health condition such as excessive hair loss or mites, which can be symptoms of a pet’s disease.
Brushing sessions can be fun for both you and your little friend and help build a bond between you two.
Guinea pigs shed some fur during early summer and spring; brushing more frequently during these seasons will eliminate loose hair.
This will prevent your guinea pig from ingesting the hair, which can lead to digestive problems.
When brushing your crested guinea pigs, use a soft bristle brush and comb and brush in their hair’s direction.
They don’t need hair trimming like other long hair guinea pig breeds.
Proper dental care is essential for guinea pigs, just as it is for humans.
Guinea pigs need regular grinding as they have an ever-growing pair of teeth.
It’s vital to ensure it has enough sources of abrasive and fibrous foods such as grasses, hay, and small branches from fruit trees.
This encourages the natural grinding down of their teeth.
Ensure your furry friend is safe from falls as trauma to their teeth can cause a disease known as Malocclusion.
It’s also essential to avoid tooth fractures resulting from falls, incorrect trimming of the teeth, and a low diet.
If your white-crested piggy has a problem with their teeth, ensure you regularly take them to the vet, have their teeth checked, and trimmed if necessary.
These guinea pigs don’t get dirty, so you don’t need to bathe them very often.
But, they may soak their short hair in urine, and if not bathed, they may attract flies, which can cause a fatal condition known as Flystrike.
Use an anti-dandruff shampoo when bathing your cavies to prevent them from getting ringworms.
Bath your little friend with warm water that’s not too hot or too cold, and it should be an inch or two deep.
It’s essential to give your guinea pig a deep clean around the tummy, and his bottom, as these are the places where he might be having a lot of dirt.
Make sure to dry them using a towel to get the most water out of their fur gently.
You can also use a blow dryer on medium heat and with little noise.
What do White Crested Guinea Pigs Eat?
Just like other guinea pigs, the white-crested cavy needs a combination of fresh fruits, vegetables, Timothy hay, grass, twigs, seeds, and clean fresh water in their daily diet.
Give your guinea pig a fair amount of Timothy hay every day.
Timothy hay contains fiber and nutrients that your guinea pig requires for its digestion and dental health.
Your guinea pig requires fresh vegetables rich in vitamin C, such as lettuce, spinach, and kales, to maintain its health.
You can also include other types of vegetables in your servings daily, such as carrots, tomatoes, cucumbers, and bell peppers.
If your little friend is selective and doesn’t love vegetables, you can add pellets fortified with vitamin C into their diet.
Pellets are rich in vitamins, fiber, and minerals, which are essential for your guinea pig’s health and growth.
Fresh fruits are essential to the health of your white-crested guinea pig as well.
Make sure to add small quantities of fresh fruits to your diet.
Your furry friend requires fresh and clean water, anywhere between 50ml to 300ml every day.
Make sure your guinea pig has a constant supply of clean and fresh water throughout the day.
It’s essential to find the best cage and one that’s large enough for your cavies, to ensure they’re happy and healthy.
A guinea pig requires an extra-large cage compared to other rodent pets.
The minimum cage size for your guinea pig recommended by Humane Society, US is 120cm x 60cm (4ft x 2ft), or 7.5 square feet.
To protect your guinea pig from other pets such as dogs and cats, make sure you buy an indoor cage.
Buy a cage that will be easy to clean as you will be doing this regularly.
Besides having a larger cage for your cavies, you’ll need quality bedding to control odor and keep your guinea pig’s feet dry.
Being prey animals, your white-crested cavy will need a hideout inside the cage.
Give them a place to hide, such as tunnels, fleece hideouts, or typical hideouts.
A hiding place for guinea pigs gives them a sense of security.
What is the Best White-crested Guinea pig Bedding?
There’re various types of bedding to choose from for their cage.
When deciding on white-crested guinea pig bedding, you need to consider the absorbency, odor, and cost.
Ensure that the floor is smooth and flat before putting on your bedding.
Choose bedding that will absorb moisture well, so your little friend doesn’t end up sitting in soiled patches.
Bedding that absorbs moisture will keep your guinea pigs healthy and prevent them from infections and other conditions that may make them uncomfortable.
Dust is hazardous for guinea pigs, as they have delicate respiratory systems.
Buy bedding that is labeled “dust extracted” or “low dust.”
Dusty bedding may cause your guinea pig to get a respiratory tract infection resulting in expensive vet bills.
The most common bedding types you can buy for your guinea pig include wood shavings (pine or aspen), wood pulp bedding, paper bedding, fleece bedding, and hemp bedding.
Bedding that is not suitable for your guinea pig includes sawdust, cat litter, newspaper on its own, and cedar shavings.
White-crested guinea pig weight
The weight of a white-crested cavy can be anywhere between 1000 grams to 1200 grams.
The female guinea cavies are slightly lighter than male guinea cavies.
What is the Lifespan of a White-crested Guinea Pig?
Their lifespan depends on many factors such as diet, environment, care, etc.
On average, a white-crested guinea pig will live for 5-7 years, depending on the factors mentioned above.
For your guinea pig to live a long and healthier life, it’s essential to provide them with a large and safe cage, fresh vegetables and fruits rich in vitamin C, high-quality hay, etc.
Like all other guinea pigs, they are prone to health problems and illness, which may shorten their lifespan.
Visit the veterinarian regularly to check on the health of your guinea pig.
How to Take Care of a White-crested Guinea Pig’s Health?
Apart from providing a healthy diet and pleasant environment for your furry friend, there are a few other things that you need to take care of to ensure your guinea pigs are healthy and happy.
It’s also essential to know the health problems associated with guinea pigs so when they become ill; you will be able to respond in time and save them.
Guinea pigs’ health worsens quickly, and it’s crucial to have them checked regularly by a health professional and get the best medication as soon as possible.
Let’s have a look at a few things that you need to look out for:
They, just like other guinea pigs, have a pair of a tooth that grows throughout their life.
These teeth need to be ground by giving them wooden chew toys and enough hay to grind their teeth.
If these teeth are not taken care of, they can be painful and uncomfortable to your guinea pigs.
Your white guinea pig’s coat is an indicator of any illness to your furry friend.
Skin issues like fur mites, running lice, ringworm, and fungal infections are among the biggest problems that guinea pigs face.
Skin problems can be uncomfortable for your guinea pig and can be life-threatening.
Contact your vet if you notice an excessive loss of fur, flaky skin, dandruff, itching, and unexplained open wounds on your guinea pig.
Hair loss on your guinea pig could indicate several issues such as malnutrition, skin irritations, infections, parasites, and toxins.
To reduce the risks of a skin infection, house them in a clean and dry cage with the right bedding.
Try also to increase bath efforts to minimize skin problems.
Eyes and nose
Examine your guinea pig’s eyes and nose regularly.
Look for any dullness or redness around the eyes and the nose that could indicate a problem.
Any discoloration around the eye can be a sign your guinea pig has an eye infection.
Milky discharge from a guinea pig’s eye should not worry you, as it’s normal.
Guinea pigs use this discharge to groom their coat.
If he does seem bothered by it, see your vet in 24 hours.
If your furry is scratching or crying out from the irritation, see the vet as soon as possible.
Urine and droppings
Guinea pig’s urine and droppings can be a good health indicator to you.
If your guinea pig has regular and hard droppings, it’s a sign of good health.
Loose and watering droppings could be an indication your guinea pig is suffering from diarrhea.
If your furry is not urinating at all, it could indicate an illness; see your vet immediately.
See your veterinarian if you notice a discoloration of urine too.
Don’t let your guinea pigs suffer from diarrhea for an extended period because they can be dehydrated and grow weak.
Small amounts of blood in urine can be a sign of cystitis and stones; see your veterinarian immediately you notice this.
Taking care of your white-crested cavy
You need to consider a few more factors to make sure your cavies are happy and healthy.
Here’s what you need to consider for your guinea pig’s happiness and health;
Apart from diet and an extra-large cage, your guinea pig will also need toys in their living space.
Guinea pigs are active animals; providing them with toys will keep them busy and active, reducing boredom.
Your guinea pig is an intelligent and social animal just like you, and so he needs physical and mental stimulation to prevent boredom.
A bored guinea pig with nothing to do in the cage to interest him will suffer from depression and illness.
To promote wellbeing and happiness to your furry, you need to provide a large cage, a good diet, and suitable toys they can play with and give them lots of positive attention.
The most popular toys that can challenge your guinea pigs are tunnels, boredom breakers, foraging toys, exercise wheels, among many more.
The size of the cage will determine the number of toys you can give to your furry.
The larger the cage, the more toys you can place in.
Give your guinea pig one or two toys at a time and rotate them so they can have a variety.
Guinea pigs get bored with the same toys all the time.
When buying toys for your guinea pig, it’s advisable to avoid toys made of toxic materials that can cause severe problems to your guinea pig when ingested.
Play with your guinea pig
White-crested guinea pigs are shy animals, but that doesn’t mean you’re not welcome to play with them.
If you give them attention and enough time, they will bond with you.
Creating time every day to play with your little friend will enhance a strong bond between you.
Picking up your guinea pig anytime you pass by their cage and giving them a cuddle and a stroke before returning them helps create a strong bond with them.
Another way to increase the bonding experience is to slowly put your hand in the cage, a little distance away from your pet, and let them sniff your hand, so they get used to your scent.
Approaching your guinea pig from behind will scare them, and they will always be avoiding you.
Soothe your cavies by talking to them gently and softly as you cuddle them.
Handling and bonding with your guinea pig will require patience as they adjust to you as their new owner and the new environment.
Cleaning your white-crested cavy cage
Cleaning its cage is essential to the excellent health of your guinea pig.
Cleaning your guinea pig’s cage is something that you will be required to do regularly.
The cage will need a daily clean to get rid of droppings and a deep cleaning every 3-7 days, depending on bedding type.
A daily spot cleaning will involve collecting the poops and changing the beddings that have become soiled.
You may pick the poops with your hands or put on rubber gloves, or use a small dustpan and brush.
To do a deep cage clean, you first need to place your guinea pigs in a safe and enclosed area away from other household pets and where they cannot escape.
Empty the cage by removing all the beddings, poops, hay, etc., and shake the beddings if you’re using fleece, to remove all the hair and hay.
You will then need enough clean water, pet-friendly disinfectant, a scrubbing brush, or an old toothbrush, and a cloth to give your guinea pig’s cage a deep clean.
If you use any kind of fabric in the cage, you will need to shake them well and put them in a washing machine for another deep clean.
Once the cage is clean, leave it to dry and then put in the fresh and clean bedding, then return your guinea pig in the cage.
White-crested guinea pigs are rare breeds of guinea pigs, but you can get them from breeders.
Before buying any breed of guinea pig, ensure it’s healthy.
A healthy cavy has a healthy coat, good dental health, glorious eyes, and good sound.
They are a shy breed of guinea pigs, intelligent, and can learn the familiar sounds of feeding and voices.
Always play with your furry to create a bond between you.
Make sure you get them an extra-large cage and buy toys for them that are non-toxic, as they love chewing on everything they get on their hands.
Provide a well-balanced diet to your guinea pig for their excellent health and ensure their cage is always clean and free from odor.