As precocial, small guinea pigs are born with fur, open eyes and firm teeth, but they are far from fully grown. The growth process is not fully completed until about twelve months.
This little baby guinea pig is allowed to grow a little more – Shutterstock / VelP
However, if you want to pass on the offspring of your guinea pigs to loved ones, you do not have to wait until the little ones are fully grown. You can find out how guinea pig pups develop on their way to adulthood here:
Guinea pigs are sexually mature before they are fully grown
The Baby Meerlis are usually nursed for three to four weeks, after which they are considered weaned. At four weeks old, female piglets can have offspring of their own. Although males are only sexually mature at five to seven weeks, they are theoretically capable of procreation even earlier if they weigh around 250 grams. This can be as early as three weeks.
To prevent inbreeding between mixed-gender siblings or between mother and son, the males should either be castrated early or placed in a separate male pig group. In any case, the piglets still have to stay with their usual group and preferably with their family in order to learn important social behavior.
When are baby guinea pigs ready for sale?
The little Meerlis should be given to new families at the earliest when they are six weeks old, but they benefit if they are allowed to stay in their familiar surroundings a little longer. Therefore, a delivery age of eight weeks is better. If they leave their group much earlier, they will later become very anxious and shy or show behavioral problems.
Depending on breed and gender, guinea pigs can grow to be 20 to 35 centimeters long and weigh anywhere from 800 to 1,400 grams when fully grown. This is the case by twelve months at the latest, but some rodents stop growing as early as eight months.
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