Rabbits or Guinea Pigs – Which is a Better Pet?

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Rabbits and guinea pigs are wonderful pets to have in our homes. Looking at them, they both are similar in many ways.

However, they still have differences that make one better than the other.

So, I wonder – rabbits or guinea pigs – which is a better pet?

Owning either a rabbit or a guinea pig have benefits and drawbacks. 

Let’s compare them based on different categories to show which pet is better.

Who would win in the battle of the perfect pet?

Let’s find out!

Rabbits VS Guinea Pigs – The Battle of the Perfect Pet

Size

Guinea Pig and Rabbit Together
PetLength (inches/cm)Weight (lbs/kg)
Rabbit16 in (40cm)6 lbs (2.7 kg)
Guinea pigs8-12 in (20-30 cm)3 lbs (1.4 kg)

Rabbits have an average size of about 16 inches (40 cm) and can weigh up to 6 lbs or more. When you talk of tiny pets, you talk of guinea pigs. 

These furry creatures tend to be smaller than rabbits. They grow about 8 inches (20 cm) to 12 inches (30 cm). 

Also, they weigh less than rabbits – about 3 pounds. This size makes them easier to care for than rabbits.

In addition, they’ll fit in smaller spaces and will be easier to move around. 

However, you should know that these sizes differ from the kind of breeds, but the bunnies are always the bigger pet.

In addition, the guinea pigs are the better options here as their little sizes help save you so much.


THE WINNER: GUINEA PIGS.

As smaller pets, they’ll use less space. Also, they will be easier to care for, and you won’t have to spend so much on them.

Housing

Rabbit Living Indoors in a Big Cage

When it comes to pets’ houses or living areas, it’s always – the bigger the pet the bigger the space. 

Unlike very small pets like hamsters, guinea pigs need large cages with so much space to run around freely. And the best spot for their cages is outside. They just love it there! 

Rabbits, on the other hand, are bigger pets and need large cages too. These cages are normally large enough for them to jump and hop around.

However, they prefer to stay mostly indoors just like hamsters do. 

Looking at both pets’ living areas, you can see that guinea pigs save up more space for you by living outdoors. So, they’re better!

THE WINNER: Guinea Pigs.

As guinea pigs cages are smaller, it won’t take much space in your house. Also, these cages would be easier to move about, especially when traveling.

Food

Two Rabbits Eating Together

Interestingly, both rabbits and guinea pigs are herbivores. Also, these two creatures’ diets are alike in many ways. Most importantly, they eat mainly hay and grasses daily. 

Also, fruits and veggies snacks can come in the diet of both pets. In addition, guinea pigs are smaller and would only need small amounts of food daily.

Rabbits, on the other hand, eat more due to their size. Also, they eat a variety of other foods that guinea pigs don’t eat. 

So, with rabbits, there’s always more to add to their diet plan. And with this, we can say that cavies are better as you’ll spend less feeding them.

THE WINNER: Guinea Pigs

They eat less food in a day than rabbits. Also, their foods are also more specific. This will limit the amount you have to spend on feeding them.

Friendliness

Interestingly, both are friendly pets. It’s quite hard to tell which is friendlier. Rabbits have more behaviors that make them a more social pet.

Guinea pigs on the other hand are naturally friendly pets. Rabbits will love to roam around with their owners and play more interactively. Guinea pigs on the other hand are also very friendly pets and love to play. 

Guinea Pigs and cat Happily Together

But what’s more interesting about guinea pigs is that they can be with other animals, even a rabbit.

However, rabbits can only cope mostly with their kind. So, this makes guinea pigs the friendlier pets and also, the better ones to have.

THE WINNER: Guinea Pigs

Unlike rabbits, they can comfortably be around any other animal that’s not a guinea pig. So, if you have dogs or any other pet at home, guinea pigs can live peacefully with them.

Child-safety

A Child Playing with a Guinea Pig

When choosing a pet you have to consider how safe your children will be with them. As prey animals, both of these pets can easily get scared and protective of themselves. 

However, it’s rare for you to see a guinea pig bite their owners, especially if they are handled well.  Nevertheless, rabbits are known to bite, kick or scratch when they’re stressed or scared.  

This is something you won’t want your kids to be experiencing. The wounds from bites or scratches can even lead to certain infections.

This is one of the reasons bunnies are not a safer option for children. So, for a safer pet to have, guinea pigs are the better option.

THE WINNER: Guinea Pigs

With them as pets, you wouldn’t need to worry much about them biting or scratching your kids. These are things guinea pigs rarely do.

Grooming

Grooming Guinea Pig with a Brush

Whether it’s a bunny or cavy, they both take time to clean up themselves. Grooming is something they do even to another cavy or bunny with them in their cages. 

However, as pet owners, you still have to brush them up and bathe them from time to time. 

Also, the level of grooming, especially combing and trimming of longer hairs, only depends on the breed of both pets. 

So, you can have a rabbit or guinea pig with either long or short furs. Your choice! However, size here plays a role in which of these pets you’ll groom more often. 

As rabbits are the bigger pets, it means they’ll need more grooming. Guinea pigs on the other hand aren’t big enough so they’ll be easier to groom.

THE WINNER:  Guinea Pigs

It’ll be easier to groom guinea pigs than rabbits as they are smaller in size.

Sanitation (Poop and Pee)

Rabbits and guinea pigs both mark territories in their areas. And they do it by peeing around these spots.  However, this is a common thing for both of these animals to do.

However, rabbits naturally like to poop in a particular corner, both in the wild. This is why they learn how to use litter boxes very fast. This way, their living areas won’t be messed up.

Guinea pigs may learn how to use it but it might take some time. Some don’t even learn at all!

Also, it’ll help reduce the stress of cleaning because most of the time you just have to empty and clean their litter boxes instead. 

Even if a rabbit poops more than a guinea, it’ll still be organized and not scattered all around. So, this gives bunnies the upper hand here.

THE WINNER: Guinea Pigs

Since they poop and pee at one spot, especially the litter boxes, it makes cleaning easier for you.

Life Expectancy

No pet parent, especially kids will be happy to lose a pet so soon, especially a pet you’ve bonded with so much. Guinea pigs live for only a short time, about 5-7 years. 

Rabbits make longer companions as they can live for about 7-10 years. So, if it’s a pet that you’ll get to be happy with for long, the bunnies are better to have.

THE WINNER: Rabbits

You’ll get to be with them for a much longer time. This way, you won’t have to lose your pet so soon.

Sleeping Routine

You should know that rabbits aren’t nocturnal as most people think. It’s just that they sleep more during the day, especially in the middle of the day. 

You’ll find bunnies mostly active during early moorings or early evenings. These are the ways they’ve adapted to living as prey animals.

They feel safe at this time as most predators won’t hunt during dawn or dusk. 

This way they are available to play with at special times of the day. To be specific, very early mornings and early evenings. 

Guinea pigs can be active almost all day as they sleep less. Also, it’s never at a particular time of the day. They take short naps at different times of the day and night

A total of their daily sleep can be about 4-6 hours and that’s pretty short. 

Good news! Cavies make better pets, especially for kids to hang around with almost any time of the day.

THE WINNER: Guinea Pigs

They sleep less and are more active at most times in the day. So, you’ll get to spend quality time with them more often in a day.

The Overall Winner:

Guinea Pig - A Great Pet to Have

Guinea Pigs Won the Battle!  

Though this wasn’t a knockout after all! After comparing both bunnies and cavies using the categories above, you can see that guinea pigs have the upper hand here. 

So, considering the size, housing, friendliness, child safety, and grooming, they took the lead. However, rabbits tend to be the cleaner ones and the ones you’ll live and bond with for a longer time. 

With this, you can tell that guinea pigs won the battle. In my opinion, they are generally better pets to have than rabbits.

Are Rabbits or Guinea Pigs More Affectionate?

Rabbit Being affectionate with It's Owner

Both are lovable pets to have. These two creatures bond with their owners very well. Is it having a bunny that loves to move around and be with you all the time? That’s very sweet!  

Or even a cavy that makes great companions, especially when you watch movies. The little pets make great pets that you could cuddle on your lapse.

So, here it’s a tie for both pets as they are affectionate in their special ways. 

Rabbits will normally want to lie next to you or run around you in circles. Guinea pigs would always want to climb you, and also play around your feet. 

Rabbits can even groom you like you’re one of them and guinea pigs won’t stop licking. Also, It’s amazing how both of these cute pets can react once they see you.

Bunnies will “binky” once they see you. And for guinea pigs, they normally will “popcorn”. Interestingly, one lovable thing they both do is to purr when you pet them.

Most exciting of all, they’ll want only you to pet them. This is trust and love at the same time.

Also Read: Are Guinea Pigs Affectionate?

Are Rabbits Cleaner than Guinea Pigs? 

Interestingly, both of them are clean animals and take time to groom themselves. However, it’s more common for rabbits to use litter boxes than guinea pigs. 

It’s still part of a bunny’s lifestyle in the wild as they don’t like to mess up their living area. They always pile up everything in one specific spot.

Nevertheless, guinea pigs can go about pooping everywhere, even on their food or sleeping area. So, this makes the rabbit a cleaner pet. 

Can You Keep a Rabbit and Guinea Pig Together?    

This is a big No! It’s amazing how guinea pigs tend to be friendly not only with themselves but with other animals. 

However, rabbits are more social with themselves. So, if they’re with smaller animals like guinea pigs, they can always bully them. 

Guinea pigs might try to play. If a fight happens, rabbits will always harm guinea pigs because of their size. Their scratches and bites can be very dangerous to little cavies. 

Even on accident rabbits can harm guinea pigs when moving around, especially with their powerful back legs.

Also, they both have different needs and their diet isn’t all that the same. Guinea pigs need a more specific diet while rabbits can eat a whole lot of other things guinea pigs can’t.

So, it’s advisable not to put a rabbit and a guinea pig in one cage. Things won’t just go well, especially on the cavy’s side.

What Smells Worse – Rabbits or Guinea Pigs?

Guinea pigs smell worse than rabbits. Just like dogs, rabbits aren’t smelly pets. Among all pets, guinea pigs are known to smell pets. However, they shouldn’t naturally smell. 

Most of it comes from the scents they produce, untidy cages, and also sickness. These reasons have made some rabbits smell bad too, but it’s never worse than guinea pigs. 

So, if it’s about the pets that smell more often, then it’s the cavies.

Do Rabbits or Guinea Pigs Poop More?

Rabbits poop more, about 200-300 times a day. Guinea pigs poop less, about 100 times a day. This is quite obvious as rabbits are the larger pets and will definitely eat more. So, they poop more!

However, it’s normal for healthy rabbits and guinea pigs to poop a lot. So, for both pets, you’ll have to clean their cages up to 3 times a day. 

Also, it’s more stressful cleaning the living areas of guinea pigs than that of rabbits. This is because guinea pigs poop almost everywhere around them including their water bowls.

Despite the fact that rabbits poop twice as much as guinea pigs or even more, cleaning is easier. They’re just good at piling so much poop in a day in one spot.

Conclusion

In summary, guinea pigs are better pets in many ways than rabbits. They’re more affordable and easier to care for. Also, they’ll save you more other things like space.

However, this shouldn’t stop you from having bunnies. They’re great pets to have!

In this article, we only looked at the better pet. So, if you like bunnies. They’re not bad options at all. We all have preferences!

You can read more exciting guinea pig topics like this one on more of our blogs. 

However, if this was helpful, don’t hesitate to share it with your friends.


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