Understand Guinea Pig Twitching Before Dying

Guinea pigs make wonderful companions, but like all living creatures, they must cross the rainbow bridge at some point.

Twitching is one of the signs that a guinea pig is dying, and it can be disturbing and heartbreaking for the owner to watch. If the sight of your piggie twitching is what’s brought you here, know that you are not alone.

By the end of this article, you’ll understand why a guinea pig twitches before death, how to tell if it’s in pain, other signs your piggie is dying, and how to cope with losing your beloved pet.

Cute Reptiles as Pets
Cute Reptiles as Pets

Guinea Pig Twitching Before Dying: 3 Facts The Owner Wants To Know

Guinea Pig Twitching Before Dying: 3 Facts The Owner Wants To Know

When a guinea pig is dying, twitching is a normal response to the body shutting down. Although it’s fairly common, it won’t happen during every guinea pig’s death. There isn’t much you can do to stop this, but know that it doesn’t feel any pain.

Why Does Your Guinea Pig Keep Twitching?

During imminent death, a guinea pig’s body can begin to convulse and twitch uncontrollably without warning.

As the nervous system shuts down, the muscles will begin to spasm. These motor functions occur as organs fail, often accompanied by confusion and a loss of balance.

Even after the heart has stopped beating, a guinea pig’s brain can continue to function, causing muscle spasms.

It may appear as if your piggie is in pain when this happens, but there is no need to worry. There is no pain and the best thing you can do for them in this scenario is comfort them in their last moments.

How Do You Know If Your Guinea Pig Is In Pain?

How Do You Know If Your Guinea Pig Is In Pain?

Some of the most common signs your guinea pig will display when in pain are:

  • Grinding Teeth
  • Squealing or Screaming
  • Changes in Posture
  • Lack of Movement
  • Squinting Eyes
  • Loss of Appetite

If you suspect your guinea pig is in pain and death is imminent, you can gently stroke their fur to comfort and help them feel calm.

But it could also indicate that your guinea pig has parasites. If your piggie is otherwise healthy, you should visit a veterinarian immediately.

What Should You Do If Your Guinea Pig Is Twitching?

What Should You Do If Your Guinea Pig Is Twitching?

When your piggie has reached the end of its life and begins to twitch, the only thing you can do is provide your love and comfort.

Try talking to them in a calm voice and gently petting them so they feel safe and less scared. Since involuntary movements can cause them to fall from high places, we recommend you avoid picking them up.

Signs A Guinea Pig Is Dying

Signs A Guinea Pig Is Dying

Do you suspect that your piggie’s time has neared? Here are more signs to look for so you can be prepared for your pet’s departure.

  • Old age. A guinea pig is considered a senior at 4-5 years old.
  • Fever
  • Labored Breathing
  • Limbs are cold to the touch
  • Loss of appetite
  • Fever
  • Mobility Issues
  • Lethargy

How to Cope With The Loss Of Your Pet

We understand how difficult it can be to say goodbye to our furry companions. It’s important to allow yourself the time you need to grieve and find emotional compensation.

In the meantime, there are many ways you can honor the life of your pet. Bring the family together for a small funeral service in which you share photos or uplifting stories about the deceased guinea pig.

Then bury its body in your garden or a pet cemetery where you can visit when you miss them.

You can also create a memorial using your piggie’s belongings such as its bowls, basket, or toys.

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Guinea Pig Twitching Before Dying FAQs

How do you know if a guinea pig is about to die?

A dying guinea pig will usually display symptoms such as a lack of appetite, difficulty breathing, lethargy, and fever.

Why is my guinea pig twitching and not moving?

The nervous system may be shutting down. Twitching can still occur even after the guinea pig has passed.

How long does it take for a dying guinea pig to die?

This varies depending on the cause of death, but it’s common for them to pass away within 24 to 72 hours after displaying symptoms.

Why is my guinea pig laying on her side and twitching? 

These are common signs of imminent death, but it could also indicate that your guinea pig has parasites. If your piggie is otherwise healthy, you should visit a veterinarian immediately.

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Conclusion

It’s never easy to say goodbye to our guinea pigs, especially when we’re caught off guard by their bodies twitching uncontrollably during death.

However, we can find comfort in the fact that there is no pain during this process and we can make their final moments more comfortable by offering our love.

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