Guinea Glorious Days started originally as New Guinea Generation (as opposed to the Old Guinea Generation, which was the previous generation of guinea pigs I had).
I’ve had guinea pigs before as a kid, and was disappointed with how underwhelming (or how underwhelming it was for me at the time) their care was. I mean, apparently they don’t do anything so you don’t need a cage for them larger than a file cabinet (making them nothing more than room decorations)? If they get sick, they’re pretty much just screwed because no matter what you do, they’ll die anyway?? Despite that, I really loved their personalities and how cute and cuddly they were, so I always got suckered back into guinea pigs.
A Whole New World 🙌
Anyway, when I had Mocha, I was given a guinea pig magazine for Christmas. They had an article about C&C cages, by Cavy Spirit owner Teresa Murphy, which I found intriguing. They also had various other articles on how guinea pigs play, how they make friends, etc. Welllll, I had a guinea pig. Did Mocha want to run and play, etc? Time to find out!
The first couple of times I put Mocha out to play on my floor, she was overwhelmed by the amount of space she had. She camped in her hidey the entire time. The third time she went out, I kept the hidey in her cage. This time, she got the idea and started running laps around the entire floor. Everytime after that, when she went out to play, she was very bouncy and happy.
Mocha’s Office Upgrade
I decided it was now time for me to make my own C&C cage. I didn’t have a very big area and thought ‘well….if I could find room for even a 2×2 C&C* (which is more than twice the size of her current cage), it’s better than nothing (because the cage was still so small, I just stuck to the bedding I’ve been using all those years—kiln-dried pine shavings, and didn’t make the jump to fleece yet).
When I got the new setup, and put her in, she found the space sooo overwhelming, like this is where I live now? It was so mind-blowing to her that she now has room for her hidey, pellet bowl, hay, a bed and some toys I left in her cage and they were actually able to be spread out instead of being piled up in one corner. 🤯 She needed frequent 5 second breaks every 20 seconds while exploring her new setup.
*A single “grid” is 14 inches, about 2 inches larger than a foot. So a 2×2 C&C is not the same as 2×2 feet.
Eventually, I was able to figure out how to rearrange my room so I easily fit a 2×3 C&C (7.5 square feet). And from then on, as I did more rearranging, the cage grew from 2×3 to 2×4, and then finally, to 2×5.
Mocha, the Sole Proprietor
Guinea pigs were never meant to work alone. In the wild, they always hung out in herds. Even if they’re not a “team player”, they still need someone to talk to in the next cubicle over, by the water cooler, etc.
Because of my job situation at the time (or lack of), I was explicitly told I was not allowed to have another guinea pig. This ended up being very difficult for me. Guinea pigs need friends. More specifically, they need other guinea pig friends, someone who speaks their language. Also humans have lives outside of pet care. So while we were bonded buddies, I would be gone for about 3-8 hours sometimes, and that would leave her very depressed.
Mocha eventually retired Jan. 6, 2013. While I regret never being able to see how she did with other guinea pigs, I know she’s having a blast at the Rainbow Bridge Retirement Center, chilling with out other pigs, playing bingo, etc.
I was petless for a while, and signed up to volunteer at my local county animal shelter as a bunny volunteer.
Because it’s an open admission shelter, they take in everything—hamsters, chinchillas, snakes, tarantulas, fish, etc. And also guinea pigs. 😱 I originally did want to volunteer because of the guinea pigs, but there was no actual guinea pig group, I settled for bunnies. And bunnies were close enough, right? Also luckily for me, I met a couple of fellow guinea pig nerds, who were involved in rescue. 🤩 We hit it off instantly.
Whenever we got in a guinea pig, I was always had to check on them, make sure they’re alright, did they have hay, etc? As it turns out, we did get in a baby cuy, who was terrified of her new surroundings. I offered to foster her until we could find a rescue to take her. I only had her for about 1 month before she was transferred to Bunny Bunch. But the whole experience is what got me into fostering guinea pigs.
After my second set of fosters were adopted (by one of my friends no less), I heard that my brother’s friend who also had a friend, that needed to rehome a couple of bonded male guinea pigs (Peanut and Butter). I heard about these two the previous year in September back when they were still homeless, but had to turn down the offer. I’m hearing about them again and they’re about to be homeless again, so I offered to take them temporarily.
The problem is! When I take fosters in, I always take them in once I know there’s a rescue that’s committed to taking them (usually sooner than later), so I don’t end up keeping them for months and eventually years. This did not happen here (I considered it an emergency situation). And all the rescues were full. 4 months in and I still had them…and I ended keeping them for good.
A Clan Divided
Peanut and Butter realized they quarreled a lot with each other. They decided to go their separate ways, each forming their own “branch”/clan of New Guinea Generation. A divider was installed their cage, so they could each see and talk to each other, but they still had their own space.
The two of them recruited teammates of their own (Peppa for Peanut and Belle for Butter). Eventually, Peanut retired, followed by Butter a couple years later, leaving their teammates in charge of their respective clans. The succeeding members of Clan Peanut & Clan Butter have in turn, hired more teammates and assistants of their own, while honoring the memories of their founders.
A Clan Reunited
Eventually, everyone retired from Clan Peanut, except Rose. Now that she was alone, we decided to have her work with Belle and Bianca. We tried this before, and it did not go well. Well…they’re older now (ages 4-8) and have mellowed out a lot. It was a huge success! With the reunification of the two clans, Rose moved her office into Belle and Bianca’s building.
Belle and Rose both retired later that year. With no teammates to help her run the company, we started hiring again. Enter Tulip and Lilo. Bianca, who mellowed out after meeting Rose (again), suddenly went into girl boss mode and starting ordering the two new girls around. They VERY quickly realized who was in charge here and (grudgingly, for Tulip) accepted it.
The Great Rebranding
We just officially partnered with SoCal Guinea Pig Rescue to provide temporary housing to interning guinea pigs in between jobs. With our new partnership, the team got together and it was agreed that we would donate 100% of our sales from our (almost dead) Redbubble shop. With that, we decided to rebrand from New Guinea Generation to the name of our shop, Guinea Glorious Days. This included going under a website redesign, and adopting an entire brand (logo, color scheme, graphics style, vibe, etc) of our very own.
While we’re not sure what the future holds for us, we hope it involve us achieving our primary goal—helping guinea pigs in need. We will always be growing, always evolving to further our goals.