You may have seen harnesses, leashes and collars available to buy for guinea pigs as there are many of these being advertised for these pets online and even in some pet shops.
Please do not buy these! There is no instance when a collar, leash or harness is suitable for a guinea pig.
Just because these items are on the market does not mean they are safe for your guinea pig!
It is unfortunate that when we see something for sale we believe it to be ok. Please don’t be fooled by this.
It may look cute when you see a picture of someone taking their little guinea pig for a walk in what looks like a dog’s harness. In fairness to owners who are buying these harnesses, they are often oblivious to the fact that these items are dangerous.
The reason these harnesses are on the market are purely so that someone can make money from them. The person or business who is selling or making them has absolutely no regard for the safety or welfare of your pet.
It is especially irresponsible for any pet store to sell these products as they must know the danger of these items.
Guinea Pigs Are Delicate and Nervous Creatures
Your guinea pig has very delicate bones and internal organs and the use of these restraints can cause your pet great harm. It is not natural for them to be put in any of these items. They are also very nervous creatures as they are prey animals in the wild.
They will be extremely distressed and frightened if they are made to wear this equipment and even more so if taken out for a walk.
Your Guinea Pig Should Not Be Walked… Ever!
Walking your guinea pig anywhere, let alone in a public place is an extremely dangerous thing to do.
For instance, having a guinea pig on a leash in a public park can mean loose dogs could attack, loud noises could frighten your pet and the additional exposure to nasty pollutants, things they shouldn’t eat (cigarette butts, pesticides, fertilisers etc.) and broken glass etc. could all be harmful.
Your guinea pig needs exercise in a safe and contained outside environment (see guinea pig runs) but they should NEVER be walked and should NEVER wear these restraints.