Emergency preparedness for guinea pigs

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Tofu

Post   » Mon Mar 09, 2020 11:38 am


As I'm sure many of you reading this have done, the spread of COVID-19 has caused me to reassess how prepared I am for emergencies. Luckily I am not in a region prone to earthquakes, wildfires, or floods. Instead I am thinking about my response to lack of power or water, a house fire, or now potentially needing to self-quarantine for 2+ weeks.

It's easy to stock up on essentials for myself, canned foods and dry goods that I already eat, and extra large batches of food that I can freeze. But what about the pigs? I've got enough hay and pellets to last me for weeks, but they go through a ton of fresh veggies that don't store very long. Store-bought frozen vegetables are not a great option as they are sometimes parboiled before freezing, though I suppose some peas or carrots could work in a pinch for a very short time. It looks like green pepper freezes well without blanching, which could be a better option. The other thing I have been thinking about is wheatgrass. I grow this for my pigs during the winter, it grows fast and is reasonably nutritious. I could probably feed this 1x a day in the short term if I had no other options. If I ran out of veggies completely, I have a smallish supply of the Oxbow vitamin C tablets.

Anyone have some better ideas for long term fresh food storage for pigs? What does everyone else do for emergency preparedness for their pets?

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ItsaZoo
Supporter in 2019

Post   » Mon Mar 09, 2020 9:40 pm


I have frozen green peppers in the past and my pig liked them just fine, so that’s an option. As you probably know they don’t need to be blanched. I just washed them, sliced them up and froze them on a cookie sheet, then poured them into a freezer bag. I’ve done the same with corn husks and watermelon pieces.

Wheatgrass is another good idea. It grows fast and would add some variety.

I did have a veterinarian tell me I didn’t need to feed so much fresh food since I feed pellets and vitamin C.

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JaneDoe

Post   » Mon Mar 09, 2020 10:56 pm


Plenty of hay is probably most important, also Critical Care or a jar of baby food just in case. And syringes for feeding. And if the piggies are on any medication make sure you are stocked up on them. Painkillers are a good idea, too, for you AND the pigs.

I think there is also a joke thread in General Chat about a possible (zombie) apocalypse.

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Lynx
RESIST

Post   » Mon Mar 09, 2020 11:00 pm


Carrots have a long life in the refrigerator (ask me how I know! says the woman whose carrots grow hair...). A small amount of carrot might be okay in a pinch. If you have anywhere outside, you could even try growing some leafy greens. Oh, and check this out:
http://www.guinealynx.info/forages.html

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Tofu

Post   » Tue Mar 10, 2020 2:02 pm


Carrots are a great idea, I almost always buy the bags of "baby" carrots which will sometimes get a bit slimy, but whole bagged carrots would probably last for weeks.

Unfortunately it's a bit too early in the season here for foraging, but I do hope to start a garden in the spring.

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Lynx
RESIST

Post   » Tue Mar 10, 2020 10:41 pm


Yes, the whole bagged carrots will last much, much longer.

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pigjes
Cavy Comic

Post   » Wed Mar 11, 2020 2:35 am


I bought extra cat grass trays in case of a lockdown. I can also go foraging for edible weeds here, luckily. And I stocked up on his meds and supplements as well.

rjespicer

Post   » Wed Mar 11, 2020 2:56 pm


I hadn't given much thought to the fresh food side of but we usually have plenty of pellets and hay on hand.

The one thing I had given some considerations to was having to evacuate them out of the building in say a Fire, or other emergency. I make sure I have the carriers somewhere I can get to them easily. Worst case i can flip their bin hidey over and put them in that

Yes I will be the guy trying to get Piggies and Hammies in to carriers while flames lick around me.

I already know where there are vegetable gardens that no one will be visiting or worrying about in a big emergency. We also have Wheatgrass seen and trays on hand if required plus a small hydroponic set up.

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ItsaZoo
Supporter in 2019

Post   » Thu Mar 12, 2020 12:30 am


The emergency scenario is why I put mine in a pet shop cage overnight. If we ever have to get out fast, she has hay and water and I won't have to try and catch her in a panic. Hope I never have to test it out.

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Renonvsparky

Post   » Fri Mar 27, 2020 6:48 am


I buy hay by the bale and pellets by the pound anyway so that much isn't a problem for me. Veggies do pose a challenge. WinCo was completely out of carrots except for the 25 lb bag. It would take my guinea pigs a year to eat that many carrots, but I bought one anyway. The humane society will appreciate the donation!

As far as the rest of the veggies I feed them, I've been lucky that there has been enough at the grocery store so far. If that changes, I have clean grass to pick for them and I can always find more. They can also survive on an all hay diet for a short time with the vitamin c supplement I keep around if they had to. I also keep at least two bags of oxbow critical care on hand.

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