How to introduce a guinea pig to a cat?
Introducing a guinea pig to a cat is a very delicate operation that will require your attention at all times and to be very vigilant by scrutinizing all the movements of the cat in order to avoid the catastrophe, here is how to proceed
It is about the same process that I recommended you to follow when you introduce your guinea pig to your dog.
Cats can be very good companions for guinea pigs, they are almost the same size, and they can play together without the cat causing any serious injury in case of inappropriate movement or a badly measured paw strike.
First step When introducing your piggy to your Cat
Start by preparing a water gun to reprimand the cat if necessary, and also put a hinge on one of your hands to intervene if your cat is aggressive towards your guinea pig.
As a first step, put a harness on your cat or hold him in your arms and take him to see the Cavy from afar, do not approach the cage on the first day, make sure that your cat and your guinea pig establish a first visual contact.
Repeat this exercise by bringing the cat closer and closer to the guinea pig’s cage, it is their respective reactions that will decide the distance between the cat and the guinea pig’s cage.
The goal of this first exercise is to get the guinea pig calm and confident while the cat is very close to its cage, and the cat must also understand that it must stay quiet and calm in the company of the guinea pig.
The second step of the introduction of the cat and the guinea pig:
Have someone help you to keep the cat on a leash (with the harness) while you take the guinea pig out of its cage.
Gently place it on the floor while holding the cat 6 or 7 feet away from your guinea pig.
Follow and study the reaction of your cat, is it in hunting mode or not, is it just curiosity ?….
If your cat lies down on his stomach, ready to jump on your piggy , make him leave the room after a small correction with the water gun.
If the cat remains calm, reward him with a treat, and gently approach the guinea pig from him without forcing the guinea pig of course, let them take their time to get acquainted.
You have to watch a little more the cat’s movements, and be ready to intervene at the slightest false movement of this little tiger.
With a little patience, you can make your cat live together and introduce him to your guinea pig after just a few days.
This could take more time, everything will depend on the character of the cat and the courage and curiosity of your guinea pig.
It’s usually easier when you have a kitten or in the other side , two or more guinea pigs, they have more courage and daring together and they approach the cat more easily when they are in a group.
Never leave the your cavy’s room door open if you have a cat in the house, especially during the first days, and make sure that your guinea pig’s shelter is placed in a place in the cage that the cat cannot reach if it pulls its paw out of the guinea pig’s cage.
Will my cat attack my guinea pig ?
Yes, cats don’t have friends, unlike dogs, so don’t risk the life of your guinea pig by leaving it alone with your cat, especially if the cat is bigger than him, he might seize the opportunity and attack it, always be close to your cavy when your cat is around.
So never trust the cat and leave him alone with your guinea pig , I have seen cats hunting and catching pigeons, believe me, they know how to be aggressive and very efficient if they go into predator mode, so always be present if your guinea pig is outside his cage.
How to have a cat and a guinea pig without any conflict between them?
If you don’t have either one yet and you want to have a cat and a guinea pig as pets, I strongly recommend you to adopt or buy a kitten and a baby guinea pig so that they grow up together as two brothers.
In addition to that, given the natural instinct of the cat being a hunter, I recommend you to never wake up this instinct by letting your cat walk alone outside the house and be in contact with birds and small animals that could represent natural prey for him, you will risk waking up the cat’s hunting instinct and it will be the Cavy who will pay for it with his life !
Is there a risk that my guinea pig will kill my cat ?
Yes, you’re not going to believe it but it’s possible that your cavy will cause the death of your cat or dog or at least make them sick by passing them the kennel cough and guinea pigs can catch Bordetella bronchiseptica, the bacterium that causes the infection in cats too.
If you notice your guinea pig’s nose running, prevent it from getting in contact with your cat until it gets better, it could transmit the virus to it if it is sick.
Let’s wrap this up
If you don’t have a cat or Cavy yet, I advise you to acquire babies ( buy a baby piggy , 4 weeks and a kitten ) so that they grow up together.
If you already have one of them and you want them to meet each other so that they can play together, proceed as I recommended, but whatever the success of the introduction, never have blind confidence in your cat and always be ready to intervene when he is next to your guinea pig.
This should not discourage you from having the two together, go and get them to meet each other and in general, cats love guinea pigs just as playmates and rarely as food.