Unhappy Guinea Pigs can make a variety of noises and each of them have different meanings. Some noises like wheeking can indicate hunger while others like teeth chattering or hissing could be seen as hostility towards others.
As a Guinea Pig owner it can be confusing for you to understand what their noises mean. It is especially important to know the different unhappy noises they make and learn what each of these mean. Knowing this can help you reassure your Guinea Pig when they feel unhappy or distressed.
Here are some unhappy Guinea Pig noises:
The whining sound that unhappy Guinea Pigs make seems like a high-pitched moan. They generally make the whining noise to let everyone know when they are not happy when something is disturbing them. For example, if they are woken up from sleep or they are being handled when they don’t want to be handled. Leaving them alone when they don’t want to be bothered should keep them from making this noise.
Unhappy Guinea Pigs will sometimes make a hissing noise that sounds similar to the one that cats make. A Guinea Pig will make this noise when they feel upset or unhappy. They’ll usually make the hissing in situations when other Guinea Pigs are getting in their space or they’re being disturbed. Petting them when they don’t want to be handled could also cause them to hiss.
The growling noise made by unhappy Guinea Pigs sounds like ‘drrr drrr.’ They usually make the noise to indicate that they are in distress. Sudden changes in their living environment can cause fear that can cause the growling noise. Reassuring your Guinea Pigs by petting them gently can usually get them to stop making this noise. Petting them should turn the growling noise into purring that is known to be a happy noise.
Having two or more Guinea Pigs in one cage also often leads to growling noises. They growl to display territorial behavior. Separating the Guinea Pigs or keeping them in a larger cage can help reduce their stress and stop their growling.
Teeth chattering is a noise that involves making sounds with their teeth that sounds like T-T-T-T-T-T. Unhappy Guinea Pigs make this noise when they feel angry, irritated or upset. Teeth chattering is common when Guinea Pigs are introduced to a cage. They usually do the teeth chattering to show dominance behavior. It is a way to communicate to other pigs to submit to their dominance. Guinea Pigs will stop making the noise when one of them submits to being dominated by the other.
It is normal for them to make the noise and should not be stopped unless it turns into aggression or fights. If they start fighting separate them and try introducing them gradually to each other later.
Shrieking is possibly the most disturbing sound Guinea Pigs can make. It is characterized by a high pitched and piercing squeak. They make the shrieking noise when they are in pain, fear or scared. A Guinea Pig making the shrieking noise should be attended to immediately. They could be hurt and may need to see your vet.