Do Guinea Pigs Like Music?

Do guinea pigs like music? This is a question that has long been debated by pet owners and animal experts alike. Some say that guinea pigs do enjoy the sound of music, while others claim that it has no effect on them whatsoever. So what is the truth? Here we will explore the topic in-depth and try to answer this age-old question once and for all.

Facts you need to know about guinea pigs

Before we discuss if guinea pigs like music, it is important to share some facts about these fascinating creatures.

Guinea pigs are small animals that are kept as pets. These animals are very social and require a lot of attention, especially because they can’t be left alone for too long. Guinea pigs need to spend lots of time with their owners, preferably at least three hours each day, so they don’t get lonely or depressed.

Guinea pigs have been domesticated since as early as 5000 BC and were originally bred as food sources by early colonizers. The Spanish introduced these animals into South America in the sixteenth century where they became popular among indigenous people. Since then these rodents have become one of the world’s most popular pets.

How to look after a pet guinea pig

People who choose to keep guinea pigs as pets need to remember that these animals cannot be left alone for too long and require lots of attention. They also need a lot of space and should be kept in large, wire cages so they can move around and get the amount of exercise they need.

A typical guinea pig has a lifespan of about five to eight years, so you’ll want to ensure that the animal is around for as long as possible. They’re social animals that live in small groups of ten members or less, so it’s important to purchase at least two guinea pigs if you want them to be happy. These animals are herbivores, so they only eat vegetables and fruits to get the nutrients that their bodies need. 

Do guinea pigs actually like music, or do they just tolerate it?

close up of guinea pig next to pineapple

Guinea pigs have a highly developed sense of hearing. In the wild, guinea pigs are constantly under threat from potential predators and have had to adapt to survive. As a result, their ears are more sensitive to sounds and noises than human ears.

Although there is no scientific evidence that can definitely say if guinea pigs enjoy listening to music or not, lots of guinea pig owners say that their pets do seem to display positive behaviors when music is played. Below you can find some behaviors to watch out for when playing music to your pet.

Common guinea pig behaviors that show your pet is enjoying your music:

  • Sitting up and waggling its ears
  • Playfully nibbling or licking you
  • Closed eyes
  • Low purring sounds or wheeking/squealing
  • Eating happily
  • Sudden jumping (popcorning)

Signs that your guinea pig is unhappy:

  • Teeth chattering
  • Hissing, growling, and whining
  • Fluffing up fur (rumblestrutting)
  • Hyperactivity
  • Disinterest in normal activities

What types of music do experts say are best for guinea pigs?

black and white guinea pig on white background

Guinea pigs have a strong sense of hearing and therefore it is unlikely that they will enjoy loud music. Even music that is played at a regular level for humans might be too loud for your pet and could damage their hearing.

So, what kind of music do guinea pigs like? Anecdotal evidence from guinea pig owners seems to suggest that guinea pigs form preferences for genres and even specific tracks. 

Classical music and piano covers are typically well received and have a calming effect. Some pets also seem to like soft chimes, bells, and water sounds.

How can you test if your guinea pig enjoys listening to music?

If you are tempted to introduce your furry friends to music for the first time, there are a few tips to make the experience as positive as possible for your pet.

Although you might want to experiment with a few different genres to find out which style of music your pet likes best, it is always recommended to play your music quietly. Any loud sounds or high-frequency noises can irritate your guinea pig’s ears.

As a general rule, if you can still hear the music from outside the room where your guinea pigs are kept, you should turn the volume down. Rock, metal, and trance music should therefore be avoided, at least until your guinea pig has got used to hearing other genres like classical, pop, or chilled dance.

Not sure where to begin? You can check Spotify, YouTube, or Amazon Music for specially curated playlists that your guinea pigs might enjoy.

Evidence suggests that guinea pigs react best to soft and calming music

Guinea pigs seem to like music because it provides background noise if played quietly. This is important for guinea pig owners who want to play or watch TV without disturbing their pet and also when they need company at night, but don’t have a human roommate that can provide the comfort of sound. Guinea pigs may not be able to appreciate all different genres of music just as we humans do, but any type will suffice so long as you keep the volume low enough so your little critter doesn’t get startled by sudden loud noises from time to time.

 

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