Flies in the Guinea Pig's Cage!

Updated on December 12, 2015
N.G. asks from Arlington, TX
8 answers

We have enjoyed our pet guinea pig, Smitty, for over two years now. He has been a much-loved and pleasurable addition to our family. We have never had a single complaint, but recently, there have been flies hanging around his cage. When I say flies, I don't meant one or two or ten. I'm talking hundreds of tiny black flies. This has never happened before. We clean his cage often- since we started noticing the flies, we clean it two or three times per week. His cage never smells bad, and we don't feed him foods that spoil, at least not enough of them to sit around and attract flies. when he has fruit or fresh veggies, we only give him enough for him to eat in one sitting. We use the soft granule bedding, made of recycled paper, adding some baking soda. We clean and disinfect his cage at every bedding change. We had noticed that his water bottle was dripping so we just bought him a new water bottle today hoping that that would help. He also gets timothy hay every day.

Any idea why the flies would be hanging around? More importantly, how in the heck do we get rid of them???

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So What Happened?

Thanks for the suggestions! We would NEVER use repellants around our precious Smitty. Hopefully the cooler weather will help our current efforts prevail.

More Answers


answers from Bakersfield on

I havent even read your post but now you have this song in my head:
Flies on the guinea pig shoo fly shoo...!!

I cant help you with your question, but good luck ;) thanks for the giggle.



answers from Abilene on

I too have the same problem! One time the water bottle was leaking and I noticed this tiny flies in my house the were bigger that fruit flies. I thought maybe they were on steroids and so I made a trap of cider vinager and a little soap. I think one had gone inside the trap in 3 days. I noticed they were all around the guinea pigs cage. I thought OMG! they are tiny because flies laid eggs in the bedding! Oh how gross! So or course I cleaned the cage and there were even more in my house than I already had the day I cleaned the cage. Mine to were not interested in food and just hung out on the cabinet. and ceiling. I hung up 3 fly traps and it seemed like the only ones I caught with them was the ones that accidently ran into the tape. LOL I killed way more with a fly swatter than the tape could even hold. Okay I am hoping this is the problem that one person commented on here. I used to buy my recyclable paper bedding at the pet store. I switched about a month ago to buying it at walmart because it was cheaper! I am going to try to put what I have left in the freezer and see if than helps because these flies are not growing, they don't look like drain flies and they are not fruit flies. Here's to hoping it works!



answers from Boston on

We loved our guinea pig! Sounds like you guys take excellent care of Smitty. Does he have a house in his cage? Could that be a hiding spot for the flies while you're cleaning? If so, perhaps you need to wash it thoroughly & leave it outside for an overnight or so.

In response to the person who suggested Off or other people-type insect repellant: Please don't! The repellant is a great idea, but those little guys can't tolerate the same kind of chemicals people can. Instead, after thoroughly disinfecting, washing and drying the cage, food & water bowls AND the area around where the cage usually stays (be sure to rinse thoroughly), use a light spray of pet-safe insect repellant. Citronella oil, eucalyptus, and/or tea tree oil are common ingredients in repellants I've used around our barn; common "people-type" ingredients, like DEET, could really harm Smitty.

You might want to try putting your little piggy in an open, temporary cage (box or whatever) away from the usual spot, clean & set up his normal cage and see what happens over a couple of hours. Do the flies still seem to be around the usual cage? Do they flock to Smitty? Keep the fresh food away for a day or two & use only guinea pig food. When you do use fresh food (mine loved grapes), put it in the dish, not on the bedding where the fruit juices can be absorbed. I think this will be a trial-and-error process. Here's hoping your caring attention, time and cooler weather will take care of those nasty flies!



answers from Honolulu on

We have a pet rabbit... kept on a covered outdoor patio... but the tiny gnat flies, still come around.
Basically... there is poop, and moisture, and food sources.... and the gnats... meet, eat, mate and propagate there... in/around the poop.
... they like moisture or pet excrement to breed and party.

Anyway, I suggest cleaning out the cage more often. Or put up fly strips around the cage...
They tend to come and go... depending on the weather also, humidity, warmth etc.
Or you can try insect repellent... like "OFF!" or the other kinds that people apply to themselves.. but of course, don't put it on your pet... just around the cage where he/she cannot touch it... lick it etc.

And yes, they like decaying fruit and veggies.
So, you have to remove anything uneaten, right away.
These things breed and lay like 300 eggs per gnat.
So, quick turnaround.

For me, I just change our rabbit cage every other day... flies/gnats just like the environment of the pet, too.
I would also suggest...that whenever you change your pets cage and poop.... toss all that stuff in a plastic bag... but don't just cinch it closed with those ties that are on it. Because, the trash bag will STILL have a gap in the drawstring area... and those tiny gnats CAN and do... get in the trash bags.. and continue on with their meeting/breeding/eating in the bag.. So... what I do is, I actually tie... the top of the bag closed... making a full knot in it. Not just using the drawstring.

all the best,



answers from Philadelphia on

I recently had a terrible infestation of flies throughout my house. I realized that they were coming from the guinea pig cage which had the most. No matter how clean I kept the house or guinea pig cage they were getting worse. There was at least fifteen flies in every room. I thought that i was going to have to call an exterminator but I decided to get really aggressive and hang fly paper all over my house (in every room and especially over the guinea pig cage. Its not too attractive but it worked. Within one week the flies are all gone. I am certain that I got infected hay. I am going to leave the fly paper up a while just in case. I hope this suggestion helps anyone out there so they can get this problem treated ASAP!



answers from Redding on

Talk to your local pet store. We had a bunny that lived in the house, she was a mini-lop and too small to be outside....we always used cedar chips in her cage. It seems strange you would only suddenly be having this problem, but I would definitely call the the pet store.



answers from Chicago on

I remember that. I had a heating guy come over and he kept swatting the flies away and it was the middle of winter. who knows...anyway they were gone after we got rid of the guinea pigs. Sorry...that's all I know.



answers from Lafayette on

Sometimes these come in with the litter or the pet food. Check the bags, and in the future, freeze the bedding for at least 24 hours before using it so it kills any bugs before they hatch. We have pet rats and we also freeze the rat blocks and dry food mixes before we use them. The pest strips work well, but you do not want anything that might hurt your guniea pig. Good luck! These are hard to get rid of!

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