If you're planning to adopt or buy guinea pigs, you need to make sure you're prepared with all the necessary items to make them safe, happy and healthy.
We've compiled a STARTER KIT LIST which only lists items that we have purchased and tested ourselves so we know them to be good. You can order all these items from Amazon online and have them delivered directly to your door. We've included links to all these products to make it easy for you to find them and purchase.
Please remember that guinea pigs should always be in pairs or more as they are social animals (unless there are special circumstances). A solitary guinea pig will become lonely and depressed.
Recommended starter kit items
We like the guinea pig habitat cage as it is the right size for two guinea pigs and measures 120cm x 60cm. Anything smaller is not big enough as they need space to run and play. The Habitat Plus comes with a cage divider, ramp and cage top which is the one we recommend. You can also view our "best guinea pig cages" article for more information on this cage or check out what you need to know about keeping guinea pigs indoors
We recommend keeping your guinea pigs indoors. However, if you choose to house them outdoors, this single storey hutch is one of the best hutches for guinea pigs that is available to buy. It gives a pair of piggies plenty of space. When it is very cold or hot outside, you may need to bring your guinea pigs indoors as they can't tolerate extreme weather. Find out more about housing your guinea pigs outdoor here
Meadow Grass Hay
We use Pillow Wad Meadow Grass Hay for our guinea pigs, mainly for eating as we use fleece bedding but it is perfect for bedding too. This hay is dust-extracted (this is important as guinea pigs are prone to respiratory problems) and is a blend of grasses and herbs.
Pellet Food (also called Nuggets)
We use the Burgess Excel Guinea Pig Nuggets because they are very well balanced nutritionally and 92% of vets recommend these. These pellets come in various flavours and our guinea pigs love all of them. The ones shown in the picture are blackcurrant and oregano flavour. Check out our page which explains more about why guinea pig pellets are important and 3 options we recommend
Because guinea pigs like to put their feet on the side of the bowls, you need to buy solid, sturdy and weighty ceramic or stoneware bowls (not plastic or the smaller ceramic ones). Opt for good quality Mason Cash or Kerbl food bowls which we've found to be the best quality. You'll need 2 of these - one for the pellets and one for fresh veg. We use the 12cm bowls.
Water bottles are much better than putting water in a bowl. A bowl of water can become contaminated with urine and faeces. We like these large water bottles as we have 6 piggies and they are equally good for a pair. Even if there is water left the next day, you must clean the bottle and refresh with clean tap water. Find out more about feeding water to your guinea pigs.
You need a hay rack that will keep the hay clean. This metal hay rack is simple but perfect as a hay feeder as you can hang it on the side of the cage.
Johnson's Clean'n'Safe disinfectant is safe to use in the cages and housing of small animals. It disinfects, cleans and deodorizes, killing bacteria and viruses to make your pet's habitat safe.
Guinea Pig Care Sheets
A pack of 12 guinea pig care sheets - although not essential, these are great value and will be an immense help when it comes to organising your guinea pig's daily needs.
What else will my new guinea pigs need?
Your guinea pigs will also need toys to prevent boredom. Please check out our "Guinea Pig Toys" page to find the best toys for your new pets. These are toys we have tested out on our own guinea pigs so we will give you our honest opinion on each!