Guinea pigs are not only cute because of their appearance but also their behavior. Guinea pigs are active animals. They love to play and run around their cage. That is why most of the guinea pigs owners like to add extra equipment in their cages, such as exercise balls or exercise wheels. But the safety of those toys for guinea pigs is still on debate. Exercise wheels or exercise balls surely one of the must-have toys for hamsters, but for guinea pigs, it can be harmful and injured your little friends while they are playing on it.
So, what is the proper toy for guinea pigs? Well, the alternative one is a tunnel! A tunnel is not only great for your guinea pigs to run and play fun with but it is also good for exercise and as a shelter and provides a perfect hideaway if they get scared or need some me-time from their cagemates. However, buying a tunnel for guinea pigs from pet stores can be a little bit pricey. But good for you, because if you are on a budget, then this article may help you out to find some ideas to make your tunnel at home. Yes, a homemade tunnel!
But before we jump in, you have probably known that the most important thing about your guinea pigs’ home is not only about addition toys, but first thing first: it is all about the set up of your guinea pigs’ cage. Make sure your guinea pigs’ cage is big and spacious enough for your guinea pigs to run around, especially after you put another equipment in it like a tunnel. The tunnel will not be that fun if the cage is too small, anyway!
Keep Your Pet Happy! 3 DIY Tunnels For Guinea Pigs
Guess it will be better if you know some types of the usual tunnels that are usually available at stores. There are many different tunnels, from plastic tunnels, natural hardwoods tunnels, until soft cloth tunnels to warm your little friends. Each of these types come with different features and benefits, so you can pick one that is most suitable for your guinea pigs’ condition, and also your budget of course.
The diameter of the tunnels can vary from 5 to 8 inches. Just make sure you give enough space for guinea pigs to crawl through it safely and comfortably without the risk of getting stucks in it. Also, remember that your guinea pigs still need plenty of space for them to run around, so make sure your tunnels are fit in the cage and still save some empty room in it.
That is the basic about guinea pigs’ tunnels, now let’s go to some homemade tunnels ideas, shall we?
1. Homemade cardboard tunnels
This type of homemade tunnel is one of the most popular ones because it is simple to make and you can easily cut to fit in the cage. You can make it from used oatmeal containers, rectangular boxes, or any readily available boxes in your home! Before you use it, you may want to clean it up with a damp cloth, remove any other packaging materials or discard the labels, and surely cut out the bottom of the container to make two openings. For the size of the tunnel, you may want to have a tunnel with a 3 to 4-inch diameter or depending on how chuck your little friends are. Any size will work, just ensure the tunnel will not roll around so you may need to bury the tunnel a little bit into the hay or grass to make it stuck. Cardboard tunnels are also not last for so long so you may have to replace it with a new one if it gets dirty from your little fellow’s pee-pee.
2. Plumbing pipe tunnels
You can easily find some PVC pipes in the hardware section which is great for a customization tunnel. With T joints and elbows parts, you can make your tunnel system that is suitable for guinea pigs and the cage. It may need more effort to make the tunnels, compares to the cardboard one, but it last longer and easy to clean. To make the tunnel, you need at least 4- until 6-inch PVC pipes and cut a 2-inch strip out of the bottom of the pipes to prevent the pipe from rolling. Also, you have to make sure there are no sharp edges on the pipes that may injure your guinea pigs while they are playing around with it.
3. Homemade wood tunnels
Homemade wood tunnels are the best for your natural-looking cage. You can make it from a tree branch or a log. Six inches in diameter of wood should be enough for your guinea pigs. You can cut the wood with a drill. Remember that guinea pigs also love to chew on the wood tunnel so you have to use a safe wood for it. Avoid using cedar, pine, and redwood because those types of wood can be harmful to your guinea pigs’ health. The safer option is wood from aspen and apple tree logs. Your guinea pigs will love it!
That is all 3 ideas for your homemade guinea pigs tunnel. It is a good alternative for you who is on a budget to buy a tunnel toy from pet stores. A homemade tunnel surely needs more effort and times because we have to do all the works, from measuring, cutting, until assembling the tunnel. But it surely worth the happiness of your guinea pigs! Don’t we all our little friends to be happy in their home?
Whatever type of tunnels: simple card box tunnel one, the plumbing pipe one, or the wood one, one thing for sure is that the tunnel has to be comfortable and safe for your guinea pigs. It has to bring joy and make your little friend happy! It is a toy, after all!