How to Teach a Guinea Pig to Circle
Circle is a great beginner friendly trick that is easy to teach, yet fun and entertaining. It is one of the most common tricks you will see if you search up videos of guinea pig tricks, because it is such an interesting and entertaining trick that is easily taught to guinea pigs. Once they learn it, circle often becomes a favorite default behavior for guinea pigs (they love to run in circles to get attention and beg for food.)
How to Teach a Guinea Pig to Circle (Video Tutorial)
For this trick, you will need....
Lure your guinea pig in a circle with a treat and reward upon completion of the circle. If the guinea pig is hesitant to follow all the way around in a complete circle at first, reward half way around the circle as well as at the end for the first few times.
Repeat until the guinea pig is confidently following your hand around in a circle.
Once the guinea pig is reliably following the lure around in a circle, you can start to fade out the lure. To do this, gradually speed up the pace that you move your hand each time until the guinea pig will circle with just a flick of your wrist. It will likely take several repetitions before you can gradually fade out the lure.
Choose a cue. This can be a word like "circle" or "spin" or a nonverbal cue such as pointing or flicking your finger in the direction you want them to circle. Use the cue every time the guinea pig runs in a circle, using the lure only as a reminder when needed. Practice this several times until the guinea pig will respond to the cue alone, without relying on a lure.
Additional Tips For Teaching This Trick
- At the beginning, choose one direction for your guinea pig to circle and be consistent. Switching directions will confuse the guinea pig. If you want to teach your guinea pig to circle both directions, each direction should be taught separately and with different cues.
- When adding a verbal cue, make sure you use the same word every time to avoid confusion for the guinea pig.