Skinny Pigs are a breed of guinea pig. They are most hairless or have very little hair. Their look is one of the things that stands them out and makes many love them. They are an extraordinary breed, and one of the newest breed of guinea pig. This guide will help you with all you need to know about skinny pigs.
The Origin of Skinny Pig
Skinny Pigs is a breed of haired guinea pig and hairless lab strand. This breed was discovered in 1978 and took place in Montreal’s Armand Frappier Institute.
They were being used for dermatology tests until the 1980’s when they were sent to the laboratories for breeding.
When the breeds were new, the first set of breeds that were made were weak and sticky. They did not have a strong immune system which made them porous to common disease. This caused some of the skinny pigs to die.
There have been many arguments that the skinny pig breed has a shorter life span and weaker compared to the other breed. There’s no proof or evidence to this argument. You can read everything about teddy guinea pig
The Appearance of the Skinny Pig
Skinny Pigs are very unique and different from other breeds in their looks and appearance. They don’t have hair from birth, and this is not usual for other breeds of guinea pigs. As they grow and mature, they start to have little hair around their nose and feet. Around their body, they have soft skin. This breed is called mini-hippo of pets, because of its appearance.
Skinny pigs look like the Baldwin guinea pig. They possess different patterns and pigmentation of skins.
The Size of a Skinny Pig
A grown and matured skinny pig may be up to 10 inches in length. This is not certain because it’s dependent on the gene of the skinny pig, how well it’s being fed and taken care of. These and others are the factors on which the size of a skinny pig is dependent on.
A newborn skinny pig maybe around three to four inches in length. As they grow, at about eight weeks, the length will be five to six inches.
At sixteen weeks, a skinny pig is almost fully matured, the size is about nine to ten inches at this age. When a skinny pig is fully grown and mature, the size is mostly from nine to ten inches.
After they are fully matured, the rate at which they grow slows down. The growth rate of the skinny pig is still quick to an extent at that point, but not rapid.
Male skinny pigs are longer than their female counterpart but with a little difference. It only gets noticeable at a point when they are matured.
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The Behaviour and Temperament of a Skinny Pig
Skinny pig behaves very similar to other guinea pig breed. They are quite affectionate and behaves very well. Their temperament is distinct and unique, just like their appearance.
Unlike the other breed, they are very calm, social. They also enjoy cuddling and being petted.
What is the Average Height of a Skinny Pig
An average fully grown and mature skinny pig can weigh about 800 grams to 1100 grams. The female counterpart weighs lesser than the male. Their weight depends on several factors like the food they consume, where they live the temperature of the environment, and others.
A newborn skinny pig weighs about 80 gram to 110 gram which is dependent on the genes, the litter size etc. When it grows to 8 weeks, the weight gradually increases to about 450 grams to 500 grams.
Once it’s fully matured, you can expect it to weigh about 800 grams to 1100 grams.
How Long Can a Skinny Pig Live?
The average time a skinny pig alive is four and a half years. Some may live up to five or six years under good conditions. Also, some can live more than seven years.
Taking Care of a Skinny Pig
Your skinny pigs should be left indoors because of their hairless skin. Hair helps to make the body warm when the weather is cold. Their hairless body would be a disadvantage in cold weather, as they will catch cold easily if exposed.
During hot weather, they should be outside. You need to apply sun cream on their body and make sure you do not reach the eyes.
How to Maintain a Healthy Skin for your Skinny Pig
Apply coconut oil in little quantity if your skinny pig is having dry skin. It will help in moisturizing the skin and protect it from being damaged.
You can also apply the coconut oil on your skinny pig that has oily skin. Just use a little and spread it around the body of the skinny pig using clean, smooth, and soft clothe. If you’re going to make use of other oil, be sure it is for skinny pigs.
Nutrition for Skinny Pigs
The needs of a skinny pig is quite similar to other guinea pig breeds. The main and basic thing that skinny pigs eat is hay. The percentage of the food is around eighty percent. Fresh vegetables and fruit takes about fifteen percent, while pellets takes the remaining 5 percent.
Consuming vegetables provides skinny pigs with vitamin C and other vitamins. Skinny Pigs can’t manufacture their vitamin C like others, so they have to depend on the fruits and vegetables they consume.
Advice has been given by many professionals that you should give your skinny pigs six different types of vegetables every day. The amount of vegetables should not be more than a cup each day. You can have it spread out through the day for them to eat. When choosing vegetables and fruits, make sure to choose the ones with a low amount of calcium and a high amount of vitamin C
Don’t suddenly change the food you feed them with. Skinny Pigs have a very sensitive digestive system, and suddenly changing their food can make them have health issues like diarrhea etc.
If you have to introduce a new food to your skinny pig, do it little by little, so their system can get used to it easily.
Skinny Pigs are a great and unique breed of guinea pig, good as a pet. Hopefully, you’ve gotten to know more about skinny pigs.