Guinea Pig Cost – Adding it all up

Guinea pig treasure islandWhen you are thinking about guinea pigs, you may think how much is it all going to cost. There are two ways to look at it, that is start up and then recurring costs. You would be surprised to see how much it can add up to. I’m not trying to put you off, but as with any pet it takes a certain amount of finances to look after all their needs. I am including the average monthly costs of two guinea pigs over a period of a year, from my own costs. Give or take this could be the same amount for you, depending on what kind of items you buy. This will be in great british pounds, so use the google currency converter to convert into your currency.

Start up costs (2 guinea pigs)

  • Hutch – £120
  • Food bowls – £4
  • Food (Hay, veggies & nuggets) – £100
  • Bedding (Fleece) – £90       
  • Grooming – £6
  • Toys – £10
  • Hiding places – £25                                      
  • Small cat carrier – £25  pound notes
  • Cleaning supplies – £40
  • Playpen – £85
  • Water bottles – £6
  • Small pet scales (if needed) – £65
  • Towel – £5

Overall Costs £581

Monthly costs

Food (Hay, veggies & nuggets) – £60

Cleaning supplies – £5

Vets fees will vary, depending on if you need to go for nail trimmings and health checks and any emergencies. Always keep at least £300 by, just in case.

There may be new toys and hiding places that you may want to buy more of, or replacing old ones.

Overall annual costs as a rough estimate of £800

So there you have my costings, the most expensive overall will be food, especially hay. You can sometimes save money by making toys up for example, like a tunnel from cardboard. The start up items should last quite a long time, but you need to buy good quality products. Buying a hutch for inside or outside could last a decent amount of time. If for outside, you may want to buy a hutch cover for when its pouring with rain, for that extra protection.

I always do a search on google just to see if I can get the product that I need for cheaper, than where it was purchased from before. Buying in larger quantities, like big bags of hay can work out cheaper, if you have enough space to store it all. When talking about insurance, its up to you, but usually it costs a lot to insure guinea pigs, because of them coming under exotic animals. It will still probably work out cheaper just paying the vet bills and even for the expensive emergencies.

Now if you were to get fleece bedding, it does last a long time. But it may need replacing after a certain number of years, if its wearing away a bit. Comparing the costs with beddings, fleece might work out cheaper for you, read my article here about fleece bedding.

If you think that you can cope with how much it costs to look after guinea pigs, then they may be the pet for you. Remember they can live from 5 to 8 years on average and some can live past 8 years, so its an ongoing financial commitment.


Thank you for reading, if you like please leave a comment below and I will reply back as soon as possible 🙂

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21 comments found

  1. Wow, thanks for pointing out how the little things can add up over time, but these little guys are well worth it. Funny how quickly any pet can become part of the family.

  2. I love pets. I have 5 dogs between my wife and I, a 180 Gallon salt water tank, and 5 bearded dragons. Almost forgot the three cats. We had guinea pigs before. Cute little buggers.

  3. Great review and it’s good how you break down the costs, I didn’t actually realise how much is required and needed to take proper care of Guinea pigs. Many thanks!

    1. Thank you Helen, this is a topic that I wanted to cover, just to give people an idea at how much it is to look after guinea pigs. I mean you don’t need to be a millionaire to look after guinea pigs, but its just making sure that anybody who wants to get guinea pigs, have the finances to do so for their lifetimes.

  4. The guinea pig is something one doesn’t think of when buying a pet is it? My mom always had them and she really enjoyed them…but she had ALL KINDS of pets! I think the ferret was the funniest one, but he was stinky. The kids had one in Kindergarden and would take turns bringing it home. My son was allergic and his eyes swelled shut! LOL No more guinea pigs for us! I enjoyed your post!

  5. I enjoyed your post. One doesn’t really think that there would be much cost in the adoption of a guinea pig, but like you said there are cost with all of our pets. INSURANCE? for a guinea pig! Who’d have thought! But like you said…vet bills add up too! I have four dogs a cat and a horse! I KNOW!

    1. It does add up, you can either self insure or pay for small mammal insurance. With self insuring, its just saving money in your bank account in case and could work out cheaper, you could be paying insurance where you are not getting the use from. 

  6. Wow, I had no idea it cost so much to have a guinea pig. I have six birds and I think it costs less to have six birds than to have one guinea pig. 

    I can see however the appeal that guinea pigs do have and they do make really cute and fun pets. Of late I have seen different types of guinea pigs too. The ones I saw last month at the pet shop looked like miniature sausage dogs. They cost around $400 though. 

    1. They really do make great pets and there are about 14 different breeds of Guinea Pigs. I have just been looking on the internet and there are skinny pigs that cost more money than haired Guinea Pigs, so the ones you saw must have been skinny pigs. Thank you for stopping by Michel 🙂

  7. I was thinking about getting a guinea pig but did not realize it was going to be so expensive. I thought it was just going to be getting the food and that was it, I didn’t even think about all the other stuff like vet fees, carriers, cleaning supplies, and everything else. It all adds up to a lot in the end. I’m still interested in getting one, but now I’m aware that it’s a long term financial commitment. Thanks for writing this article and informing me about all these things I haven’t thought about.

    1. Hello Kent, 

      I am pleased that you are now going into buying guinea pigs, with the awareness of the financial commitment. Also, you do need to get a pair of guinea pigs, as one will be lonely. 

      All the best


  8. Thanks for a really informative breakdown of startup costs. I am grateful for all of the suggested ways to cut down costs and DIY! I worked at an animal hospital for 5 years and we treated guinea pigs for nail trims and occasional illnesses/injuries. It’s definitely true that vet bills can add up quickly so I agree that it’s very important as a responsible pet owner to maintain some sort of vet fund just in case. 

    Cheers 🙂

    1. Hello Connor, 

      I bet that was a great experience to work at an animal hospital. 

      A vet fund will really be a life saver, when it is needed. 

      Thank you

      Best Wishes


  9. I have been planning to buy a Guinea Pig for the past three months . Thank god I read this article before buying it. I’d have never thought it had this much of recurring expenses monthly which I wouldn’t have been able to handle. Thank you for the heads up. I really appreciate you for writing this article and sharing it with us.

    1. Hello Sujandar, 

      It is certainly something that needs thought on if you are going to buy guinea pigs, is the monthly costs for two guinea pigs, because one will get lonely. 

      It is my pleasure, thank you.


  10. Hi Eden, I loved your article. I saw a guinea pig in a film once a child was playing with it and it seemed so calm. Are guinea pigs calm? Do you think guinea pigs are good pets for younger children 4 -8 years and older or older 8-12 years? I never imagined it would cost that much to care for guinea pigs. I like the guinea pig pictures too. They look so sweet! I also checked out your article Christmas for guinea pigs. And now I think I want one, but I noticed you bought two as a child and as an adult you got four. Do they need the company of other guinea pigs? Please let me know. – Thank you.

    1. Hello Sukundi, 

      Guinea pigs will be skitty at first for a certain period of time while they get used to their new surroundings, that could last up to a month. In time they will be more calm as they are prey animals and still have that instinct. They just need time with love and care and their personalities will shine through.

      They do make great pets for 4 to 8 year olds, but they do need the help from parents to be able to do all the care. Also again finances and time come into play as well. 8 to 12 year olds will probably be able to care for them without too much help from an adult. 

      I wanted to give people an idea from my own costs, how much it can actually be to look after two guinea pigs. 

      They must be bought in pairs whether that is two or four guinea pigs, never on their own. 

      Thank you 


  11. You’ve enumerated the needed cost for proper and safe haven for these little pets. I’m also interested in their health care, will they not need any injections for pests and insect bites. Then it will be an additional cost if there are any.

    I’m sure I cannot have one of these animals, although they are lovely, it costs me a lot.  Your costing is in pound currency and that will be multiplied 67% in my country.

    1. No as long as the guinea pigs are taken care of properly, for example living in a clean environment. Because guinea pigs are in a confined area unlike a dog being walked, they do not need injections. But certain countries could have rules in place for guinea pigs to have them, you should always then ask the vet on this matter. 

      Yes I understand that they will cost a lot more in other countries, because of the availability of items for example. As you say multiplying that amount from pounds to your currency would be loads more. 

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