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Guinea Pigs are Herbivores. This means that they eat plants, not meat, fish or insects. Their natural food is grasses and other low growing plant leaves and stems. They also eat the seeds and fruit that they can reach. In captivity, their food includes the same sorts of vegetables, fruit and herbs that we eat ourselves. Below are a few of the foods you might give to your pets. Remember that they need plenty of variety of food.
A good quality hay made from a mixture of grasses is better than one made from just one sort of grass, but if supplemented with a variety of other foods, this Timothy hay could still be used as a main food.

Fresh grass and grass based hay should be the main foods Guinea Pigs are given, but they relish a moderate proportion of higher energy foods, including fruit and vegetables.

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The occasional Carrot is a good food treat for Guinea Pigs They are much better fresh, and you can include the tops for your pets.

Parsley  has a strong and distinctive taste. It's an acquired taste for both people and Guinea Pigs. The first time you, or your pet, has this herb, you might not like it very much, but quite soon you decide that it has a nice taste.

Fresh parsley is very high in vitamin C, and is one of the best overall sources of vitamins and minerals of any garden plant.


Apples and  pears are excellent foods for Guinea Pigs, as part of a varied diet.


Peaches and nectarines are good food for your pets in moderation, but the kernels are poisonous in large quantities.


The leaves of orange trees and of some other citrus trees are a good occasional treat for your pets in small quantities, but they don't seem to like the fruit.


Legumes like clover and Lucerne (called Alfalfa in some countries) are a valuable food as a part of a varied diet, but should not be the main food for Guinea Pigs. Here is Lucerne growing in a field.





























If a guinea Pig is being fed on a mostly dry food diet, or the animal is old or sick, a vitamin C supplement is a sensible precaution. I would use the one on the right in the picture above, not the one on the left. Guinea Pigs do not need additional quantities of most types of vitamin and a multivitamin supplement is giving them things they don't need, and which may even be harmful in large quantities.

If you use vitamin C drops, put them unto the animals’ food, not its water. Guinea Pigs vary a lot in the amount they drink and in some situations, they may drink very little. Also, the Chlorine or Chloramine in tap water destroys Vitamin C very quickly. Even in water without these powerful oxidising agents the vitamin is very unstable and can disappear quickly.

Do not overdose!

Lettuce is a food that some people say shouldn't be given to Guinea Pigs, but I find they enjoy an occasional feed of lettuce leaves. Lettuce loses its vitamin C very fast after harvest and may have already lost half its content of this vitamin within a few hours. Supermarket lettuce will nearly always be much older than that. The best way of getting letuce, both for your pets, and for yourself, is by growing it yourself and feeding it immediately after picking. Cos lettuce has the advantage that you can pick just a few outside leaves, using them fresh and leaving the plant still growing and producing more leaves for tomorrow.



Rabbit pellets are intended for Rabbits, not Guinea Pigs. Many types of rabbit pellet do not contain added vitamin C. In some cases, they are based on Lucerne (alfalfa) hay. While these pellets are not harmful to Guinea Pigs in small quantities and can be used as a high protein, high energy supplement, as part of a varied diet, they are unsuitable to use as the main food for Guinea Pigs.