What do guinea pigs hate the smell and taste of?

  • MickAdmin
  • March 17, 2023

Guinea pigs are one of the most popular small pets in the world. They are known for their gentle and friendly nature, which can make them great pets for kids and adults alike. However, guinea pigs dislike certain smells and tastes—and understanding what these are can help you create a happy home for your furry friend.

Let’s look at what guinea pigs hate the smell and taste of so you can keep your pet safe and stress-free.


What do guinea pigs hate the smell and taste of?


Guinea Pigs have incredibly keen senses of smell and taste, so that they can be picky with food.

As an expert guinea pig owner, I’ve found that they dislike the smell of vinegar and citrus fruits like oranges and lemons.

They also usually turn their noses up at solid herbs such as oregano, rosemary, and cilantro, so you’ll want to avoid adding these ingredients to your pigs’ diet if possible.

Additionally, many guinea pigs are averse to spicy foods – so if flying peppers aren’t your favorite flavor, be sure not to give your long-haired friends something that might cause their tongues a bit of discomfort.


Strong Smells


Guinea pigs are known for their relatively discerning taste and olfactory senses.

While they tend to enjoy the taste of fresh fruits, vegetables, and hay, they do not appreciate strong smells.

Strong odors such as peppermint, menthol, and camphor can be particularly distasteful to them.

Moreover, smells from detergents or cleaners around their habitats can also repel their inquisitive noses.

For these reasons, guinea pig owners must monitor the scents in the environment where their beloved pets spend the most time.

Guinea pigs may respond differently when two strong smells mix — so a careful nose should always prevail.


Bitter Tastes


Every guinea pig owner should know that their precious pet hates many tastes, but none as much as a bitter one.

Bitter tastes, such as those found in citrus fruits, are particularly repellent to guinea pigs, so much so that even the strongest among them will shy away from snacks containing them.

Luckily for us owners, plenty of tasty treats are available for our little fur balls that don’t contain anything sour or bitter – we have to research and ensure that their snacks are suitable.

All in all, it’s important to remember to double-check the ingredients whenever treating your guinea pig friend.


Harsh Cleaners


A guinea pig’s sense of smell is surprisingly strong, so they are sensitive to many harsh cleaners.


Anything too strong or unpleasant will quickly scare them off in the other direction.

Generally, guinea pigs hate anything with that chemical-like scent, such as bleach or ammonia.

It’s best to use mild detergents and keep your house clean without the help of harsh chemicals if you want to keep your guinea pig calm and content.

Aside from their aversion to certain cleaners, guinea pigs have notoriously sensitive taste buds, so even if no odor is present, it may taste bitter and unpleasant for them.



Guinea pigs may look cute and cuddly but have particular likes—and dislikes. Knowing what smells and tastes they don’t enjoy can help you create a safe environment for them while still allowing them to explore their curiosity without putting themselves at risk.

Avoiding harsh cleaners, certain types of food, and strong scents or odors will go a long way toward keeping your pet happy—and healthy! With this knowledge, you’ll have all you need to give your furry friend the best life possible.

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