[Gpdd] MISC - skinny pigs

Andrew a1.mills at portset.net
Wed Oct 31 16:50:32 EDT 2007

Hello, I've never actually seen a skinny pig, I didn't even know they were available here in the UK.  However, I do have a hairless rat so I would imagine some of their care requirements would be similar.  When I first heard about hairless rats I was pretty horrified.  How could anyone breed something like this?  I thought they'd be ugly, horrible looking and thought I'd never even consider having one.  Again, I thought they were only available in the US and never expected to even see one here.  However, in May last year we went to one of our local garden centres and they had some.  Well, my curiosity got the better of me and I ended up getting one.  I've never regretted it.  Although I would never actually encourage people to breed them, I now feel that they're probably here to stay and that it's better for someone who at least understands what they're taking on to have them than for them to go to someone purely for their novelty and for them to end up not being looked afte!
 r properly.  I really hope they never become as common here as they are in the US but I'd have to say that I think I would have one again.  With regard to care, it's much the same as for any other rat except that it's obviously important to keep him warm.  He lives in my bedroom which is always nice and warm (I hate the cold as well).  He's very active, friendly and behaves like any other rat.  He's never had any skin problems.  In fact, he's been as healthy as any of my other rats have been, moreso than some of my past rats.  I'd imagine that care for a hairless guinea pig would be similar.  Obviously it wouldn't be possible for them to be kept outdoors, they'd need to be kept in a warm room.  I've heard that they eat more than normal guinea pigs as they need to maintain their body temperature and, without fur, they need to eat more to keep their temperature up.  If I did ever see one, I'd probably want to get it.  I still have very mixed feelings about hairless animals.  !
 No, I don't think they ever should have been bred in the first place, 
but now that they have been I think it's up to people to ensure that they don't suffer and that means that people who understand what having a hairless pet means and know what they will need during their life are the best ones to look after them.  As already stated, it's not their fault that they're here and they deserve to be taken care of.  Their lack of fur does not make them any different in any other way.  My rat as changed my views on hairless animals themselves, although it hasn't changed my views on their actual breeding.

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