guinea pig nails paint

Guineapig Nail Painting: Is That A Good Idea?(Detailed Guide)

Painting the nails of their little furry friends is something many people do without even considering whether such practices are suitable for their pets or not.

If you are reading this post, then it’s likely you wanna make your guinea pig look colorful but are in two minds about the potential risks of such steps.

Here in this post, we will discuss the various risks and facts about painting the nails of guinea pigs, which as an animal lover you should know.

Is it safe to paint guinea pig nails?

To be on the safer side, you should avoid painting the nails of your guinea pigs.

The nail paints contain certain chemicals and fumes that can deteriorate the health of guinea pigs. The strong scent will irritate their respiratory tract and if they accidentally end up eating it, it can lead to stomach problems.

Even though the idea of painting your little friend”s nails seems fun but you need to understand those nail paints are made for coloring human nails and not animal nails. Majority

Reasons Why You Must Never Paint Guinea pigs nails

The nail paint can deeply affect the respiratory system

Guineapigs owing to their small size are tremendously sensitive to toxic food items and objects with irritable scents. Their whole respiratory system is very sensitive and is quite narrow in diameter are way more susceptible to fumes than humans.

As the paint will dry up, some of its portions are bound to evaporate and as their feet-to-nose distance is not much hence there is a chance that they will end up inhaling the majority of the harmful chemicals.

The fumes from the paint can end up irritating their respiratory system and can lead to symptoms like sneezing and breathing trouble. Under such circumstances, rush to the vet with the guinea pig as early as you can.

Presence of harmful chemicals that can lead to long-term diseases

Unless your guinea pig already has a serious history of respiratory illness, it is unlikely that they will get exposed to long-term disease, especially if they end up smelling the scent only once or twice.

However, if you keep on using these paints regularly right in front of them, it can cause long-term respiratory illness. So avoid using the paint near them or try to use them in rooms that have sufficient air circulation.

The chemicals can cause serious skin Irritation

Guinea pigs have tremendously sensitive skin and if the skin comes in contact with the nail polish chemicals, it can lead to itching, burning sensations which may lead to redness and pain.

If Consumed Accidentally, it can be lethal

Most nail paints are made up of completely inorganic chemical components that are not suitable for consumption even in tiny amounts.

  • So if you have been using nail paints that are stuffed with chemicals, you shouldn’t even think of coloring their nails you should not even have them around them.
  • Guinea pigs tend to bite their toenails and have a tremendously sensitive stomach. So even accidental ingestion of such chemical substances can be lethal for them.

You can never be sure that they won’t end up consuming some parts of the paint, they regularly tend to groom themselves and drink water and food that comes in contact with their feet.

So even after drying up, some parts of the paint can get mixed with their food and that can be catastrophic for them.

Owing to their small size even a tiny bit of accidental toxin ingestion can be a bad thing for their health.

You need to remember that your guineapig is a wild animal and not just a trophy or a doll that you can do whatever you want.

Doing certain stuff to a pet, that can potentially harm their health just for the owner”s own amusement is never a good idea.

Psychological Stress

The whole process of handling and forcefully painting the nails of your pet can be a stressful incident for small animals. They feel stressed already when you are cutting or clipping their nails but it is beneficial for their health.

In the case where you will be painting their nails by holding them still for a brief period, this action is completely a redundant activity and can make them feel anxious.

Pros and Cons OF Painting Guinea Pig Nails

Can be visually quite appealingChemical exposure
Can be a fun experience overallIngestion of the nail polish can be deadly
Can help in easily identifying the guinea pigsCan cuase tremendous skin irritation and respiratory problem
The whole process can be traumaterizing
It is risky as you can end up damaging the nails

So, can you paint around guinea pigs?

No, you shouldn’t paint around guinea pigs as by being nearby they can inhale in the smell, and with that, some of the aromatic components can also get inside their body.

If you handle your piggies with your hands, it will also be wise to not paint your nails as they can end up eating them while nibbling food off your hand.

The only workaround to this problem is to use nail paints or nail polish that are organic and labeled as pet friendly. And even then always make sure that the paint has properly dried before handling them. When in doubt it is best to consult with your local vet regarding this issue.

Alternative Activities that you should do with guinea pigs

  • Regularly trim their nails: The guinea pig nails grow at astronomical speed and you need to keep them trimmed from time to time.
  • Consider using Nail Caps: Instead of painting the nails of your piggies, consider using colorful nail caps.

This will serve two purposes. Firstly it will prevent them from scratching on other people and other stuff around the house. Secondly, it will look super pretty. Make sure they are chew-friendly for pets.

  • Provide them with toys and play with them: Guineapigs need regular physical training to be happy and healthy. Provide them with exercise wheels, chewy toys, and tunnels.


Yes, inhaling paint fumes can be lethal for any kind of rodent including guinea pigs and hamsters.

They have a very sensitive respiratory system and any kind of smell that is strong can cause them irritation. Even objects like garlic, and organic spices, are sufficient enough to irritate these little furry animals. So paints that are stuffed with chemicals are very likely to affect them adversely.

Is acrylic paint safe for guinea pigs?

Acrylic paint is not safe for guinea pigs and you should never apply them on their nails. You should even avoid using it around them for personal purposes. The strong scent can end up making them cough or sneeze and in worse cases, they can start having breathing problems.

All opinion shared here is personal opinion and you should always consult with the vet regarding practices that are associated with the health and well-being of your pets.

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