Hamsters vs. Guinea Pigs
Which Furry Friend is Best For You?
We broke down the differences between these furry little wheel chasing pets! Their small size and low maintenance lifestyles makes them perfect family pets, but which option is best for your household?
Hamsters and guinea pigs are related, but quite distantly. They both belong to the order Rodentia, meaning that hamsters and guinea pigs are both rodents. Guinea pigs are bigger than hamsters. A full grown guinea pig usually measure between 8 and 12 inches while hamsters are smaller and their size varies widely (between 2 to 8 inches depending on species). Guinea pigs have longer bodies and tend to stay on all four legs whereas hamsters have smaller, more round bodies and use their front paws to hold their food (similar to their close rodent cousins like rats and mice).
Hamsters are omnivores who eat primarily vegetable and insects. Guinea pigs are herbivores and unfortunately also coprophages (meaning they supplement their diet by eating the vitamin rich faeces produced in the caecum). Guinea pigs are fully domesticated and they do not really have a strict activity behavior cycle and will largely be active when their owners are. Hamsters are nocturnal, but unlike guinea pigs that squeak and twerp, hamsters do not make sounds.
Guinea pigs are more social and happier when they are in pairs or groups, and usually get on well with other animals. Hamsters generally do not do well in groups as they are competitive for territory and food. Guinea pigs can be kept indoors in metal cages or outdoors in hutches such.
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