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Can Guinea Pigs Eat Paper?

The surge in the popularity of guinea pigs is continuing to climb at a surprising rate with more and more people adding a pet guinea pig to their family.

As you can probably guess due to the sometimes odd behaviours of guinea pigs, this has then resulted in a large number of questions from the guinea pig owning community asking about their various behaviours as well as why their guinea pigs do certain things.

One of the more frequently asked questions that we have been seeing asked over and over again from the guinea pig owning community is if guinea pigs can eat paper as well as why some guinea pigs will happily eat paper that they find.

We have seen some people on social media asking about this recently too and most of the answers that people were offering were incorrect so we decided to publish this dedicated article in the hope of being able to help as many of our readers as possible who own a guinea pig that is eating paper.

We have broken the article down into three different sections to try and focus on specific topics for each section that we see people from the guinea pig owning community asking about with regards to their guinea pig eating paper.

The table of contents below should make it as quick and easy as possible for you to be able to navigate the article quickly though and skip to sections that you want to read.

Can Guinea Pigs Eat Paper?

Some guinea pigs will eat any paper that they find be it random paper that they come across while out of their cage playing or paper put into their cage for them to use as bedding.

It is rare that a healthy, well-fed guinea pig will start to eat paper though so if you do notice that your guinea pig is eating paper, it may be a sign of a potential health or dietary problem.

This may be due to not feeding your pet guinea pig a suitable, high-quality guinea pig food that is actually surprisingly common due to there being so many nutritionally deficient food products on the market.

In some cases, simply upgrading the main food that you give to your guinea pig may be enough to get it to stop eating paper and help it thrive on a nutritionally complete food.

It is very rare that your guinea pig will eat paper due to a health issue but this can sometimes occur and you are able to book a video call with a vet to have them check your guinea pig over if you do think that this may be the problem.

This is often not required tough and the health problems in a guinea pig that can cause it to eat paper will usually have other, more obvious symptoms that there is something wrong with your pet.

Why Does My Guinea Pig Eat Paper?

There are a number of reasons that a guinea pig may eat paper when they have other, more suitable food sources available.

These reasons range from having a nutritionally deficient diet that is more common than most people think to health problems to it just being part of the odd personality and behavior of some guinea pigs.

As we touched on back at the start of the article, guinea pigs really are one of the stranger rodents that are commonly kept as pets and they do some stage things.

They will often at least try to eat many of the things that they have access to at least once and this does also include paper so it could just be one of them things where it is just your guinea pig being a guinea pig…

Some paper can also have food or drink spilled on it too changing the flavor and scent of the paper potentially making your pet guinea pig thing that it is a good source.

You can often quickly and easily check for this by smelling the paper and you should be able to work out if it has had food or drink spilt on it by accident.

If it has and your pet guinea pig continues to eat it then you can look to switch out the paper bedding in your guinea pigs cage that has the issue and replace it with a clean product.

What Should I Do If My Guinea Pig Eats Paper?

The majority of guinea pigs who do eat paper will be fine and not have any problems at all.

In some very rare situations, the paper may result in impaction in the guinea pig’s digestive system but this is very rare and is often due to a separate health issue in the guinea pig that will usually be showing other symptoms anyway.

If you do think that your guinea pig has ate paper and it is either vomiting or has not pooped for a day or more then there may be a potential problem.

The cheapest way to have your guinea pig checked over by a professional is to book a video call with a veterinarian as they will be able to assess your guinea pig and ask you a couple of easy questions before offering their recommended action for moving forward.

As we mentioned though, the majority of guinea pigs who do eat paper will be totally fine and not have any serious or long term problems.

Just try to discourage your guinea pig from eating paper as best you can to prevent it from building up a habit of trying to eat as much paper as possible as the more paper your guinea pig eats, the more nutritionally deficient it may become and the higher the risk of impaction occurring becomes.


That brings our article going over if guinea pigs can eat paper to an end. We hope that we have been able to help our readers who own a guinea pig get a better understanding of what may be happening but with guinea pigs, it may just be a guinea pig being a guinea pig and wanting to eat anything it finds. As we have touched on earlier in the article though, some guinea pigs may eat paper due to dietary or health issues that are often an easy fix in most cases.