My Guinea Pig Keeps Knocking Over Food Bowl

Guinea pigs are adorable creatures and popular animals kept as a pet. They are very social and have a docile temperament making them suitable for even beginners or families with children.

However, guinea pigs can be quite messy and may be knocking over their food bowl, making you wonder why they do this.

Guinea pigs usually knock over their food bowl due to several reasons. They do this when hungry, accidentally, bored, seeking your attention, and lots more.

This article will help highlight everything you need to know about why does “my Guinea Pig keeps knocking over food bowl” and the ways that you can prevent this.

Cute Reptiles as Pets
Cute Reptiles as Pets

Why Does My Guinea Pig Keeps Knocking Over Food Bowl?

guinea pig and apple
Credit: JuliaLazarova / Canva.com

Generally, it is quite normal for a guinea pig to knock over their food bowls. They usually do this when they are hungry or want a certain food type.

They can also do this on purpose when they are having fun, trying to get your attention, they don’t really like the food you give them, or by accident.

Bored

Generally, guinea pigs are playful and curious creatures, and this shows they require regular play time and lots of entertainment to keep them happy and lively.

Guinea pigs can easily knock over their food bowls when bored in frustration.

Some of the other signs that can help indicate that your guinea pig is bored are stated below.

guinea pig put his hands on the food bowl
Credit: Mike Gouline / Canva.com

Some of the things that can make your guinea pig bored are as follows

  • You leave your guinea pig alone inside its cage for most of the day.
  • Your guinea pig does not have a cage mate.
  • Their diet’s lack of variety makes your guinea pig bored with the menu.
  • There are not enough toys and accessories for your piggies to play with. 

You can easily prevent your guinea pig from being bored by doing the following things:

  • Provide toys and accessories to keep them happy and healthy. 
  • Offer your guinea pig a wide range of food with different taste
  • Allow your guinea pig to play out of their enclosure regularly.
  • Introduce new items into your guinea pig cage regularly
  • Create a large open space where your guinea pig can play and run around.

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Hungry

A common reason for a guinea pig to knock over their food bowl is when they are hungry or you are feeding them late. Guinea pigs can also knock over their food bowl if you feed them food they don’t like when they are hungry.

guinea pig waiting for food
Credit: Vera Aksionava / Canva.com

Your guinea pig can be constantly hungry if you are not feeding them with enough hay or you don’t feed them regularly. The best way to deal with this is to feed your guinea pig on a regular schedule with a balanced diet.

This will help them know when their next meal is, and they will not get angry or hungry before the food. You should also ensure your guinea pig gets enough hay in their diet.

Accident

Your guinea pig may also knock over their food bowl accidentally. Guinea pigs are usually energetic creatures, and you will find them running around their cage. They may then knock down their food bowl accidentally when playing.

Some of the reasons for a guinea pig to knock over its food bowl accidentally are stated below:

  • They are chasing each other.
  • Your guinea pig is playing around the cage.
  • The cage you keep your guinea pig in is too small.
  • When eating.

You can prevent this by ensuring enough space for your guinea pig to play without running into their food bowl. A large enclosure space will also help improve your guinea pig’s overall health and happiness.

guinea pig and food bowl
Credit: Anderson_Vieira / Canva.com

For Fun

Generally, guinea pigs have a playful behavior and can simply knock on their food bowls for fun. Therefore, your guinea pigs may knock over their food bowl regularly or every now and then based on their personality.

There is nothing much you can do if your guinea pig is knocking over their food bowl for fun. You don’t have to scare them as this can frustrate them and even make them afraid of you. You can simply clean up the food and move on.

You can also prevent this by using a ceramic bowl or securing the food bowl to the tank.

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Wanting Attention From You

The funny thing is that your guinea pig may just be knocking over their food bowl to simply get your attention. This does not really matter if the bowl is full of food or they just finished eating.

Your guinea pig will knock over their food bowl for fun if they notice that you try to come to their cage and interact with them after doing this. 

The best thing to do is to give them more attention when they are not misbehaving simply. A good way to give them attention is to spend time playing and talking to them.

Therefore, you don’t have to worry when this happens as long as your guinea pig is not hungry.

Bowl Is Too Small or Light

Another reason for guinea pigs to knock over their food bowl is the type of bowl that you are using. Some bowls are usually lightweight and small, making it easier to knock over by your guinea pig.

However, some bowls are heavier, making it hard for your guinea pig to knock it over. 

guinea pig eats in a small and bright food bowl
Credit: Lucato / Canva.com

They Don’t Like The Bowl, Location, or Food in it

Another common reason for guinea pigs to knock over their food bowl is if they don’t like the bowl or the food in it. For instance, your guinea pig can knock over their food bowl if the bowl contains a pellet or vegetable they don’t like.

Guinea pigs can also knock over their food bowl if they don’t like where it is located. Your guinea pigs can knock over the food bowl as they push it around to get it in their desired location.

Your Piggies Want To Eat Their Food Off The Floor

Generally, guinea pigs are born with an instinct to forage for their food. Therefore, it is possible for your guinea pigs to want to eat their food off the floor. Your guinea pig can then knock over their food bowl to help fulfill that urge.

How To Prevent Your Guinea Pigs from Knock Over Their Food Bowls

It can get frustrating if your guinea pigs constantly knock over their food bowl. This is because your guinea pig will waste lots of food, and you will need to clean the cage more often.

The good thing is that you can prevent your guinea pig from knocking over their food bowls using one of the following tips.

Have a Bigger Cage

You can easily prevent your guinea pig from knocking over their food bowl by housing them in a bigger cage. This way, you will not have to worry about your guinea pig accidentally knocking the food bowl when playing around their cage.

Secure Food Bowl

A great way to help prevent your guinea pig from knocking over their bowl is to secure their food bowl to the cage. You can do this by attaching the bowl to the cage or using Velcro.

Velcro is self-adhesive and very effective as your guinea pig will have difficulty moving the food bowl after using it.

However, you need to ensure that you attach the Velcro on the side where your guinea pig cannot reach or chew on it.

Change The Food Bowl Type

Another great tip to prevent your guinea pig from knocking over their food bowl is to change to a food bowl that is designed to prevent your pet from knocking them over.

Some of the best food bowls that you can switch to are stated below.

Use A Corner Shaped Bowl

Corner-shaped bowls are an effective way to prevent your guinea pig from knocking over their food bowl. Corner-shaped bowls are usually sturdy even when your guinea pig starts to use their body weight to push a side of the bowl.

You can find a corner-shaped bowl in pet stores, or you can also use the ones in your home as long as it is safe for small pets.

Use A Heavy And Big Ceramic Bowl

Another bowl that can help to prevent your guinea pig from knocking it over is a heavy ceramic bowl.

The bowl is usually heavy and can take the weight of your guinea pig without tipping over. You can get a heavy ceramic bowl made for small pets from pet stores.

Another good thing about this bowl is that your guinea pigs will not chew on it.

Alternatives Food Bowl

There are also several alternative ways to prevent your guinea pig from knocking over its food bowl. They are stated below:

guinea pigs and foods on the floor
Credit: Green Apple Studio / Canva.com

Scatter the Food on the Floor

Guinea pigs are natural foragers in the wild and they prefer to scatter their food when eating. This will be like they are in the wild, and they will find it more interesting.

The main issue with this method is that some food will go to waste if your guinea pig does not finish it.

Use A Gravity Bin Feeder

Another alternative way is to use a gravity bin feeder that will only dispense food as your guinea pig eats.

Gravity bin feeders are usually huge, and it will be hard for your guinea pig to flip them over. However, this is used for pellet foods.

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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Can Two Guinea Pigs Share A Food Bowl?

Yes, two guinea pigs can share a food bowl. However, this doesn’t usually happen very often as it depends on the personality of your guinea pigs.

Your guinea pigs, especially the male, can start to show dominance over each other during feeding time which can be stressful to the other guinea pigs.

Why does my guinea pig keep Wheeking for food?

It is quite natural for guinea pigs to wheek as it shows they are excited to eat. They usually do this when you feed them with their favorite treat bag, or you are about to feed them.

Can I Overfeed my guinea pig?

Yes, you can overfeed your guinea pig if you give them too much sugary food and treats.

This is why it is best to keep track of what you feed your pet and only give them food that has nutritional value and is safe for your pet.

Conclusion

It is quite natural for guinea pigs to knock over their food bowls. However, it can frustrate guinea pig owners as you will need to clean up very often, and some foods will waste.

The good thing is that there are several simple ways that you can use to keep this behavior under control.

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