You may be wondering: do guinea pigs close their eyes when they sleep? Commonly, they don’t. It depends from one guinea pig to another.
As a guinea pig owner, you might wonder a lot of things about how and when cavies go to sleep.
I have a pet cavy who doesn’t close his eyes when he goes to sleep. He stays still, which freaks me out sometimes!
Luckily, I researched why our pets don’t close their eyes when taking a nap.
In this article, we will ponder the logic behind this natural phenomenon and other guinea pig sleep facts.
Keep on scrolling to know more!
A Guinea Pig’s Sleep
Before discussing whether guinea pigs close their eyes when they sleep, we should tackle their entire sleeping pattern and characteristics.
Like most species in the entire animal kingdom, guinea pigs need sleep.
This biological process allows them to revitalize their brain and whole body. It gives them an opportunity for cell recovery and other internal body repairs which is vital for their well-being.
Moreover, most people think they are “nocturnal” due to their capability to see in the dark. This statement is false.
Their capacity to see in the dark doesn’t equate to them waking up at night solely. Cavies tend to sleep at any time of the day. They don’t see sleeping as something that they should do on a scheduled basis.
Commonly, your pets sleep for 4 hours every day. Unlike human beings who need 6-8 hours of shut-eye, guinea pigs could manage to have less sleep time.
However, they don’t have a typical sleep schedule and do not sleep for 4 hours straight. They tend to take a nap between two to ten minutes. At night, their naps could reach up to thirty minutes max!
They are most active at dawn and dusk but take naps throughout the day. This is because they feel secure in dim light which is their natural istinct.
To know whether your pet is sleeping, you have to notice a few signs. When they are standing entirely still or hiding in their burrow doing nothing, your cavy is likely taking a nap.
You shouldn’t disturb them; and if their eyes are open while they’re resting, it is normal for them to do so.
Are Guinea Pigs Eyes Shut When Sleeping?
Sleeping is an important thing to do for guinea pigs.
The question is: do guinea pigs close their eyes when they sleep?
Mostly, they don’t.
This section will delve deeper into why guinea pigs do not complete their eyes when they sleep.
A brief history
In the wild, the entire guinea pig species’ stature makes them suitable as prey for more giant predators.
Despite having eyelids, as all mammals do, guinea pigs don’t close their eyes when they sleep.
Since they belong to the lower and less dominant part of the food chain, they need to adapt to their surrounding environment to ensure and secure their survival.
Guinea pigs’ alertness and awareness of their surroundings heighten every single time.
Sleeping makes them vulnerable since they remain in one place. If they tend to shut their eyes, this makes them even more prone to predator attacks and lessens their overall awareness.
They need to keep their eyes open to look out for any possible information that could lead to their demise.
Years of adaptability led to this characteristic in the instinct and evolution of guinea pigs.
That’s the reason why, even until now, they keep their eyes open when they go to sleep or take a simple nap; it’s in their DNA, and they commonly can’t do otherwise.
Can guinea pigs close their eyes when they sleep?
As discussed above, guinea pigs mostly can’t close their eyes when they sleep due to their instilled bodily instinct.
However, that isn’t always the case. Although they have evolved to do otherwise, their entire species could still close their eyes when going to bed.
Since they keep their eyes open for security and awareness towards their environment, feeling that they are in a secure and safe environment when sleeping could make them close their eyes.
They could either shut their eyes partially or fully closed.
However, this happens on rare occasions only but it is quite a compliment because this shows that your guinea pig is trusting you and does not feel threatened and the need to keep the eyes open.
As an owner, you can’t and shouldn’t force your pets to close their eyelids. It solely depends on their comfort and instinct, whether they should do so.
Tips To Improve Guinea Pig Sleep
Since comfort and security make a guinea pig have the best sleep, you should prioritize improving their quality of rest as an owner.
My guinea pigs tend to prefer soft and warm environments, as a guinea pig would.
To provide them the best comfort, I tend to keep the temperature warm and tolerable enough, and I make sure that their home is clean and offer soft beds and caves for guinea pigs to rest.
Furthermore, keeping them in a place where there is less to no sound around them could provide them the utmost relaxation.
Giving them a sufficient amount of light that isn’t too bright nor too dark could also comfort your cavies.
Guinea pigs are social animals so if you have only one guinea pig, think about bringing another one to your home. Offering company to your guinea pig feel relaxed and protected and they might sleep next to each other.
Lastly, limiting human or animal contact could make them feel more comfortable and secure since they think that no potential predator could be around them.
Providing them with the best treatment and amenities makes them have better sleep quality.
Who knows? Maybe these tips could make them very comfy to shut their eyes as well.
How do I know if my guinea pig is having trouble sleeping?
Guinea pigs could have some troubles, which make it hard to fall asleep.
Also, it is difficult to tell if your guinea pig is sleeping since their eyes tend to remain open while they sleep.
But if you observe them still, having rapid eye movement, ears twitching, and open eyes, chances are they are deep asleep.
If your guinea pig tends to be hyperactive all day without taking some time to take a nap or is continuously moving without any halt, your cavy could be having some problems concerning their sleep.
When this happens, observing them more often is a requirement. If you think that your cavies are experiencing any complications afterward, immediately take them to a veterinarian.
What should I do if my guinea pig doesn’t sleep?
This problem could come from any disease or disorder.
If a guinea pig doesn’t take some time to rest, this could lead to bodily complications and affect their overall health.
Seek immediate veterinary help if your cavies tend to have less sleep or don’t sleep at all.
Do guinea pigs close their eyes when they sleep? They often don’t.
However, with a sufficient amount of care, relaxation, and security, your pets could begin to trust their surroundings and sleep with their eyes fully shut.
Prioritizing a guinea pig’s health and overall comfort is a must for every guinea pig owner.
Through this article, you would live a better life with your cavy. Good luck and best wishes!
Delbert Curtis is a senior writer at Petcosset, a leading online resource for pet care information. With over 10 years of experience in the pet industry, Delbert is passionate about helping pet owners provide the best care possible. He has written extensively on pet health, nutrition, training, and behavior. Delbert is dedicated to staying up-to-date on the latest research and trends in the pet industry to provide the most accurate and helpful information to Petcosset’s readers. Delbert enjoys spending time with his pets and exploring the great outdoors when he’s not writing.