A guinea pig is a forager and will eat all day long to satisfy its hunger. This fact is the reason why it is important to provide fresh timothy hay at all times. The source of good fiber makes the digestive track of a guinea pig an efficient machine capable of producing amazing amounts of digested food…aka poop. Guinea pigs tend to develop ‘favorite’ spots for their movements. Alfalfa is no exception. He has his spots and no should move or change something about that area. This makes changing his house and box out exceedingly difficult for me.
Alfalfa does not like having his cage cleaned. He works hard all week long to lay down his scent, place his poop in just the right spots, and track litter all though out the apartment. How dare someone come in a ruin all of that hard work? But, I like many normal people do not want my apartment to smell like guinea pig litter. The work must be done. I usually start by clearing out his ‘alternative’ litter boxes. There are two under the bed and one outside of his cage. He likes to make large messes in all three of these. He seems to like having these litter boxes changed out. He will watch in fascination when I use the dust buster errant poop beans. His cage, his home, is where the problems come in…
Alfalfa always protests with a lot of squealing, much snorting, and chattering teeth when I remove him from his cage. I usually just place him on the floor and tell him to go under the bed for a bit. An indigent Alfalfa will walk away stopping to look back and chatter his teeth at me. The first step it to empty out the old litter and wipe down the wires. Taking the cage bottom to the bathroom, I will place the plastic in the bathroom tub and run hot bleach water over it. Alfalfa figured out how to capitalize on my cleaning time in the bathroom.
Over the past several weeks, I have returned to the living room to find a pile of poop where his cage used to be. Being a smart human that would not let a rodent have the best of me, I started to lay down a piece of newspaper to make the cleanup easier. It seemed to work well. I would remove the pig, clean the cage, and return to a nice little pile of poop in the center of my newspaper. Easy fix right? Alfalfa had other plans for our little game.
I came back one week to finish the cleaning to find the newspaper did not have poop on it. Being an optimist, I thought, ‘Wow! My guinea pig is smart!’ I called him and he stuck his head from out of the skirt of the bed. I cooed, “Good boy!” and he came trotting over to me. I walked over to the fridge and took out a carrot. I scratched the top of his head and said, “Good boy!” and placed the carrot on the floor. Alfalfa took the carrot and ran back under the bed.
I went back to cleaning the cage humming a small happy tune to myself. I dried the cage and bottom and removed the clean newspaper from the cage’s spot. There was a large, flat, round area of poop on the carpet. Somehow Alfalfa had gotten under the newspaper and left a pile for me. I was shocked and let out, “Alfalfa Pig!” The guinea pig came running over to me expecting another reward for his ‘good’ behavior. He pop corned in excitement next to me. He wanted a reward.
I couldn’t be mad at Alfalfa. He was just doing his job… all be it with expert care and precision. He had won another round…
Alfalfa – 2
Kerry Anne – 0