Can guinea pigs learn their names? Yes, here is how…

By Nadine Oraby | 2020 Update

Guinea pigs are fun little creatures that make great pets.

Their high intelligence levels pair perfectly with their adorable tiny faces.

The truth is:

Such cute pets can be given the best names.

And what’s even better is that guinea pigs can be trained to recognize their names!

So, how can guinea pigs learn their names? Well, you’ll have to train them. This training involves a comfortable environment, a relaxed guinea pig, lots of treats, and of course, sticking to one pet name for all its life.

To find out more, keep reading!

Teaching guinea pigs to recognize their name

Before you start your guinea pig’s name training, keep in mind the following:

  • Unlike cats and dogs, guinea pigs will take a while to get familiar with their name
  • Choose a short and easy name to make sure your pet doesn’t get confused

Now, there is no exact formula to teach your guinea pig its name.

The process will vary from one guinea pig to another.

There is no specific age when the guinea pig can learn better.

Just start the training and hope for the best.

A lot of people tend to ask me questions like, “do guinea pigs know their owners?”

Well, although they don’t have great eyesight (more on that in this article), with proper training, they can recognize their own name as well as their owners.

What you need to do is start using the chosen name frequently.

Every time you talk to the guinea pig, call it by its name.


Use its name when you’re feeding or caressing the animal.

After familiarizing the guinea pig with the name for a few days, bring it out of its cage.

Put the animal a few steps away and hold a couple of treats in your hand while ensuring that the guinea pig sees them.

Now, start calling the guinea pig by its name.

It will take a while before the animal actually starts responding.

After a couple of tries, you’ll notice that no matter where the guinea pig is facing, every time you call its name, it will look towards you.

This is when you’ll know your training has been successful!

Speaking of which, here are our top 31 picks for guinea pig cages. Buying one of these would ensure that your guinea pig is in a safe environment.

The ideal environment for training guinea pigs

Can guinea pigs learn tricks? Of course, they can. However, training is most successful when your animal feels comfortable with you.

If your guinea pig is bothered by something else, it won’t be able to focus on what you’re trying to teach.

Therefore, before you begin any sort of training, double check everything around you to ensure a safe and comfortable environment.

First of all:

Get rid of anything nearby that could be an attention grabber.

Here are some guinea pig tips for training:

The training area for your guinea pig needs to be clear of any toys or food.

Only then will the guinea pig pay full attention towards you.

Moreover, look out for safety hazards such as electrical cords or open switches.

Other than that, you must also make sure that the guinea pig is well fed before you start the training session.

It shouldn’t be distracted by the need to poop either.

Let it drink plenty of water as well.

Do not schedule your training session at a time that is otherwise the guinea pig’s play time, meal time, or nap time.


Ensure that the guinea pig is in its best health.

Any pain or bruises cause discomfort, which will be an obstacle in your training.

Healthy treat options for Guinea Pigs

You may be wondering:

Training is a very unhealthy process due to the use of all excessive treats.

Your concern is 100% right.

This is why I suggest you opt for healthy treat options.

Fruit and vegetable chunks serve as an excellent treat for things like training.

They will serve the purpose of attracting the animal while still ensuring health and calorie intake.

Here are a few treat options you can use:

OrangesBell peppers

You must not overfeed treats, even if they are from the aforementioned healthy options.

The sugar intake must be regulated to prevent the risk of diseases.

Also, certain fruits and vegetables are toxic to guinea pigs.

If you’re looking for a commercial pet treat for your guinea pig, try out these Guinea Pig Honey Sticks for your furball.

Other fun training ideas for Guinea pigs

You’ll notice that it gets so much more fun once you’ve trained your guinea pig to do certain things.

Merely being able to get its attention by calling by its name will have its joy.

You can make your relationship with the guinea pig even better by training it to do even more stuff.

Here are some of the basic training options that you can try:

  • Coming your way on a certain command
  • Following you on a certain command
  • Litter training
  • Training not to bite

Once your pet has mastered these commands, you can move forward to the more fun options.

Just like a dog, your guinea pig can also play catch with you.

Associate the bringing back of the ball with a treat and your guinea pig will learn the trick in no time!

My personal favorite is teaching a guinea pig to jump through a hoop.

It will become a great game option as well as a trick that you can show off to your friends when they come over!

Guinea pigs can also learn to stand.

Trust me:

It just keeps getting better and better once you get the hang of it!

Related questions

Do guinea pigs recognize their owners?

Guinea pigs are pretty smart.

If they can recognize their name, they can definitely recognize their owner too.

If you play with your guinea pig regularly, feed it, and offer affection, the animal will surely recognize you and reciprocate the feelings of love.

Do guinea pigs understand humans?

Of course, guinea pigs cannot understand human language.

However, there are other ways of communicating too.

If you train your guinea pig accordingly, it will be able to understand you.

Moreover, they will also respond.

But, it will take some getting used to for either of you to understand each other’s signs and indications.

What are guinea pigs called?

Guinea pigs are scientifically called Cavia porcellus.

Cavy or domestic cavy is another name for these creatures.

Surprisingly, guinea pigs have got nothing to do with pigs.

In fact, they belong to the rodent animal group.

The exact families that they are a part of are Caviidae and genus Cavia.

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