Have you ever seen your guinea pig with its eyes closed? Or have you ever seen your guinea pig blink its eyes? Probably not. You will find your guinea pigs’ eyes wide open all the time—throughout the day and at dawn and dusk and midnight. This makes guinea pig owners wonder: do guinea pigs have eyelids? Do guinea pigs blink their eyes? Do guinea pigs sleep with their eyes open? If you have been overwhelmed by these questions, know that you are not alone; every other novice guinea pig owner is found asking these questions.
Continue reading to learn do guinea pigs close their eyes and much more.
Do Guinea Pigs Blink?
Guinea pigs do blink, but you will probably never catch your guinea pig blinking. Because unlike humans, who are blinking machines, guinea pigs rarely blink. Guinea pigs only blink their eyes when it is absolutely necessary. They blink their eyes only to get debris and dust out of their eyes.
How Often Do Guinea Pigs Blink?
While humans are blinking machines and constantly blinking unconsciously, guinea pigs never seem to blink. But sometimes, they do blink when it is necessary. Guinea pigs usually blink either to moisten their eyes or clean dirt and dust settling on their eyes.
|Guinea pigs blink more often when: |
· The weather is dry—guinea pig will blink to moisten its eyes
· Debris or dirt in guinea pig eyes—guinea will blink to clean its eyes
· Guinea pig is 110% secure—guinea pigs are content that there is no threat lurking around.
So, if your guinea pig lives in a clean habitat, where there is no chance of any dirt or dust getting into its eyes, it may never seem to blink. Conversely, if a guinea pig is living in a bit untidy habitat and debris often finds its way into your piggy’s eyes, it may have to blink more frequently to keep its eyes clean.
Also, guinea pigs who have gotten comfortable with their surroundings and feel 110% secure are more likely to blink than guinea pigs who feel insecure all the time.
Why Do Guinea Pigs Almost Never Close Their Eyes?
Before finding their way to our homes and becoming popular pocket pets, guinea pigs used to roam in the wild. In the wild, guinea pigs are prey animals and are constantly under threat of being chased and preyed upon. So, the instinct of keeping their eyes open even while sleeping has been ingrained in their DNA. Living with the risk of becoming a meal of a predator up in the food chain at any time, while living in the wild, guinea pigs have ingrained the habit of never closing their eyes, not even while sleeping.
Predators are reluctant to attack wide-awake guinea pigs as they would have very little chance of catching them. Conversely, a guinea pig sleeping with its eyes closed would have little to no chance of making a successful run for its life if it were to be attacked by a predator during its sleep.
Though no predator is lurking around the guinea pig cage in your home, guinea pigs would still keep their eyes open as it has become their instinct. They have learned to keep their eyes open all the time. They even sleep with their eyes open.
Do Guinea Pigs Have Eyelids?
Guinea pigs do have eyelids. That said, guinea pigs rarely blink or close their eyes, so most guinea pig owners never get to see the eyelids of their guinea pigs and end up believing that guinea pigs don’t have eyelids. But actually, they do. They are just not blinking all the time or sleeping with their eyes closed, like petty humans.
Do Guinea Pigs Sleep With Their Eyes Open?
Guinea pigs sleep with their eyes open so that they are always aware of their surroundings and never become a meal of a hungry predator.
Typically, most pet guinea pigs sleep with their eyes open; sometimes, they may close their eyes when they feel 110% comfortable and secure.
That said, if your guinea pig never seems to close its eyes, there is nothing to worry about as it is a natural guinea pig behavior.
Why Is My Guinea Pig Blinking a Lot?
Noticing your guinea pigs blinking a lot, you may get worried if there is something wrong with your guinea pig. Well, there is probably nothing serious but f you notice your guinea pig blinking more often, you should examine its eyes closed. There is a huge probability that some dirt and debris might have weaseled into your piggy’s eyes, and he is having difficulty removing it.
Suppose you happen to spot an irritant in your guinea pig’s eyes. Instead of removing it yourself, you should take your piggy fried to a veterinarian. As a responsible guinea pig owner, you do not want to risk injury to your furball’s eye.
A Guinea pig blinking a lot is an emergency if there is some sharp bedding or another irritant in the guinea pig’s eyes. Therefore, it should be immediately taken care of by a professional. If left unattended, these irritants could cause guinea pig eye infection.
Red and Swollen Guinea Pig Eyelids
In case of conjunctivitis, guinea pig eyelid would be sore red, and swollen; there might be some green/yellow discharge in guinea pig eyes. Guinea pig eyelids would be quite visible at this time. But with swollen eyelids, your guinea pig would be in extreme pain.
Some guinea pigs might have red eyes since birth. Such guinea pigs are known as Red-eyed Guinea pigs.
Final verdict: Do Guinea Pigs Blink?
Guinea pigs have eyelids, and they do blink. They just do it very rarely for most guinea pig owners to notice. Guinea pigs blink to moisten their eyes when the weather is dry and clean dirt out of their eyes. It is super rare, but guinea pigs may also blink because they feel entirely secure.
Now that you have learned that guinea pigs rarely blink their eyes, you may want to check out our interesting article on Can Guinea Pigs See In The Dark?