It’s estimated that indigenous people in the Andes Mountains have been eating domesticated cuy (pronounced “kwee”) since 5000 BC. Just by the by: I have a younger sister named Sheree, second name Kim. It also includes the different food groups humans should be eating from. Covering guinea pig in a soft blanket and feeding water in small quantities with the help of a syringe to your guinea pigs is what you may do, but do not force them to drink when they deny. Current destination: Scotland 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿Â, Please note: As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases [U.K]. I tucked straight in.Â, I have heard people say that the meat of the guinea pig tastes similar to chicken but I think this is a cliched simplification of its taste. Very few of us feel comfortable eating something cuddly and even less of us feel comfortable watching our food be killed. I have been told by locals to avoid the rainforest regions and instead try Cuy in the Andes mountain range. Bumblefoot. Our guinea pig feeding guide is our version of “The Eatwell guide” which is a document produced in the UK that shows how much we should eat every day. According to activists, eating guinea pig is good for the environment. It wasn’t until the Spanish came and started sending guinea pigs to Europe that the furry creatures were treated as pets. Miller at The Nature Conservancy says guinea pig is "delicious, very tender and hard to compare to anything else" — not even chicken. Pick your side: either all animals matter or none do. Gordon Ramsay Talked About Eating Guinea Pigs And Why He Can't Serve Them In The US "I am telling you now, delicious." In just months, such a collection may have doubled in size. I am fortunate enough to live in an area in which venison is available at a small fraction of the price of more conventional cuts and I avail of it when run out of meat to eat. Gamey in texture, it is more similar to that of rabbit but with an extremely crispy exterior. Good luck and enjoy your adventures. They can be kept in backyards, or in your home. That cute fluffy pet that we keep in the UK and the US, I ate him.Â. Here you can find my travel stories (and blunders) and maybe you’ll want to try winging it too! Urinary tract infections should be investigated by a veterinarian, who can decide the best course of treatment. Next up is a pheasant breeding project. To help start a home guinea pig farm, Heifer International typically supplies a family with one male and seven females. If you are willing to give your guinea pig a good home with proper food, attention, living space, grooming, and veterinary care, you will be rewarded with a happy, healthy, cute, and fun guinea pig. Who knows. I know this isn’t the best start to a travel blog but honestly, I find the world terrifying. Surprisingly, after smelling the meal heading towards us, I was no longer concerned about whether I would be able to stomach the delicacy. Guinea pigs make a variety of sounds or vocalizations, some of which most owners will recognize. Guinea pigs at a farm for the animals in Puno, Peru, where they're considered a delicacy. Monitor food intake and be aware of how any changes may have impacted your pet. Usually it is dried alfalfa grass pressed into pellets and sometimes has other things like corn, carrots, and seeds. Not only is the meat very good for you health-wise but there are also huge environmental benefits to farming guinea pig over cattle. Yes, that little hamster-like creature you had as a childhood pet is somewhat of a delicacy in the Andean highlands and has been a traditional part of the Peruvian and Bolivian diets since pre-colonial times. Of course, there are vegetarians are screaming in horror after seeing the photos of fried up rodents on this page. I envy you your ability to travel the world. I don’t know if guinea pigs eat less food than cattle. If your guinea pig is not eating or pooping, then it clearly indicates there is a blockage of poop in their gut, or the gut movement have slowed down. Like with pork in Ecuador, the animal is sometimes blow-torched prior to cooking to remove the hair.Â, Having always appreciated how cute guinea pigs are, I wondered how I would cope with trying to eat one. They take up less space and people can produce their own meat. While guinea pig may be attaining star status as a hold-your-nose-and-roll-the-camera bizarre food, whether an animal so favored as a pet in the United States will become a mainstream piece of protein is, perhaps, doubtful. A Taste of Peru: Eating Guinea Pig. ". I ate a quarter of a grilled guinea pig recently during a cycling trip in Ecuador. Guinea pig (Cuy) is a delicacy that is very typically associated with typical Peruvian cuisine but it is also eaten throughout other countries of South America such as Ecuador, Colombia and Bolivia.. Tim and I decided to put Cuy in our Ecuador itinerary and try it in the city of Cuenca. For more strange foods you can try in Ecuador, check out this post on jungle town Misahuallí! it was only once the South Americans began to bring guinea pigs into Europe that they first became pets. At least they’re consistent in their non-meat consumption.Â. She cooked some last night and it is delicious! I finally passed my driving test (sadly not on the first attempt), I travelled to South America for the first time and had my first experience eating guinea pig. There can be a lot of reasons behind the same. "Guinea pigs don't require the land that cattle do. hide caption. This could then lead to stomach pains and digestive upset with your guinea pig. Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador and Peru are all countries which have seen these furry little rodents grace local plates for thousands of years. In the United States, most guinea pigs intended for human consumption come from Peru as whole, frozen, hairless rodents in plastic bags. Surely though, as a meat-eater that is ridiculous? With all of the current focus on preserving the environment,  some activists are trying to market guinea pigs as a carbon-friendly beef alternative. We will have to feed them cuy and convert them! You may best know the guinea pig as a nervous little pet that lives in a cage and eats alfalfa pellets. One portion of Cuy is good to share between two people and also comes served with potatoes, beans and corn. Chef Astorga at Urubamba says cuy — which he describes as "about the size of a squirrel" — has "tender flesh and very tender skin." (You can’t be any more useless than me.) From a personal point of view, I would definitely recommend Cuenca’s restaurant ‘Tres Estrellas’ in which to try guinea pig. A traditional food, Guinea pig (called cuy in Peru) has been served whole on special occasions since Inca times. At the time, he says, conservation groups were expressing concern about local ranchers clearing forest to provide pasture for their cattle — activity that was causing erosion and water pollution. Sort: Relevant Newest # eating # chewing # guinea pig eating # chewing # guinea pig # cute # halloween # costume # pirate # guinea pig Guinea Pig Bowls on Amazon.com. Whilst I am much more open-minded about my diet now, I will confess I don’t like eating things with a face. My wife and I have raised and slaughtered rabbits and chickens, so we are not squeamish and will try anything at least once – ever eaten crocodile? Since then, demand has climbed every year, according to Carlos Atorga, who opened Urubamba in 1976. In the West, it would be fair to say we are all very removed from what ends up on our plate. Several dozen people became ill after eating guinea pig meat at a Minneapolis food festival earlier this month. The average price of a guinea pig between two people in Ecuador is around $25. The sinewy meat was dry and sparse, and I went away hungry. Some people are purely vegan, and vegetarian and don’t eat meat or animal products at all. But here, in the Andean mountains of Ecuador, guinea pigs aren’t treated as cuddly companions; they’re bred, boiled and deep-fried for dinner. The guinea pig has many positive qualities that can’t be covered completely in this short article. Middle-class foodies with a taste for exotic delicacies are also ordering, photographing and blogging about guinea pig. 147 GIFs. But others describe what sounds like a different creature. I would say it is most similar to a good pork crackling.Â. It is not a recent development that has seen guinea pigs end up on the plates of humans. I am the type of guy who would try anything as long as it looks good and I must admit they do look good. Cuy is high in protein and lower in cholesterol making it arguably a healthier choice than many other types of meat. Owing to their size, cows require a huge amount of food to sustain them and allow them to grow to the size required for the meat market. They are docile, which makes them much easier to farm then larger animals. Guinea pigs are overly sensitive to being held, so limiting their exposure will keep them happier. Guinea pigs at a farm for the animals in Puno, Peru, where they're considered a delicacy. Whilst I am not veggie, I can see their point. Many diners eat every last morsel, literally from head to toe. My motto is “if it lies on my plate long enough for me to stab it with a fork, I’ll eat it.” If your guinea pig has an issue with its guts or is dehydrated, the poop can turn dry and tear-shaped. The Cuy that Tim and I ate in Cuenca was roasted on a spit (you are recommended to book at least an hour in advance to give it time to cook) and then fried off. Sometimes the reason why guinea pig stops eating lays in the actual product that your pet is avoiding.In a majority of cases guinea pigs stop eating vegetables because they are fed with excessive amount of treats and pallets. Check for untouched or unfinished treats an hour or so after they’ve been offered to your guinea pig. However, we spoke with the owners of two Peruvian food importers who said cuy consumption in the United States is certainly rising. You can make his passing less uncomfortable by offering him water from a spoon, syringe, or water bottle. In fact, they probably bring up childhood memories of our first fluffy family addition. It is strongly recommended to remove … Dogs eat grass all the time. He says the nose, ears and fingery little hands are the best bites of all — but Oka removes the animals' extremities to avoid offending sensitive diners. Eating roasted or fried guinea pig is an ancient tradition in parts of South America, and still common today. Although your dog can't properly digest these things, none of them are harmful. Whilst there is evidence to suggest Europeans have never commonly eaten guinea pig, that is not the case in South America. I know that it isn’t going to be for everyone but I believe that there are only benefits to be had by putting guinea pig on the menu. I am currently installing a run in my garden to raise guinea pigs for our table (Norfolk, UK). Most venison is rendered palatable by soaking it in a brine consisting of 1 tablespoon of salt to each litre of water. The steady amount of produce in your guinea pig's diet means that you need to be conscientious about removing uneaten fruits, veggies and other perishable foods before they spoil. Whilst cooked guinea pig can be found all over Ecuador and Peru, there are certain places which are recommended more than others. She says the meat can be tough and stringy. There are a couple of ways to cook guinea pig, generally either roasted, baked or fried. I am a vegetarian, and personally, i would rather people ate guinea pigs then cows. It seems to me that through eating guinea pig we may not only reduce our carbon footprint but also become a little more open-minded about our neighbours as well. The skin is extra salty and is fried to the point where it cracks as you cut it. 1. After all, having dogs as pets didn't stop me from trying that meal in Cambodia. Cutting down on fruits or treats are likely starting points. Guinea pigs on the grill A change in pelleted food brands or cutting back on pelleted food must be discussed with your veterinarian. That is definitely less land than the average cow requires! Some vegetables can be provided few times a day, some few times a week . It is definitely worth doing your research when it comes to finding a place to eat Cuy. There is nowhere suffering from the consequences of deforestation as much as the South American countries. Jason Woods, the nonprofit's Americas regional program assistant, says guinea pigs — which he says usually weigh no more than 2 pounds — are twice as efficient as cows at turning food, like hay and compost scraps, into meat: To render a pound of meat, a cow, he explains, may require 8 pounds of feed. You need to consider the yield of how many pounds of meat per pound of food fed to the animal. 2018 has been a year of firsts for me. This winter we managed to get a 35kg warthog, which we cut up and packed into the freezer. A 750 pound steer can forage on grass alone if needed. That’s what adventure is all about though, right? Believe it or not, guinea pigs originated in the Andean region (Colombia, Ecuador, Bolivia, and Peru) and were originally raised specifically for eating. This depends on your perspective. Guinea pig, (Cavia porcellus), a domesticated species of South American rodent belonging to the cavy family (Caviidae). Leave for 12 hours at first and then adjust according to you taste. Guinea pigs are cute and cuddly and eating one is like eating your pet dog. The desire to maintain and protect the Amazon Rainforest is heavily impacted by the need for farming space, which has resulted in crazy levels of deforestation. Phil Whitehouse/via Flickr The Salt contacted several federal regulatory agencies, including USDA and Fish and Wildlife, but none seemed to track guinea pig imports. The only meat we eat at present is wild game, and we want our own source of eco-friendly meat. We are currently doing such immeasurable harm to our planet in the name of feeding ourselves which we could easily reduce through lifestyle changes. Not to mention, you can actually raise hundreds of guinea pigs in an area as small as your back garden. In fact, archaeologists believe that guinea … Share; Tweet; Pin; Cuy restaurants in Banos [E]ating cuy was high on my to-do list in Ecuador, despite having a guinea pig named Patches as a pet when I was a kid. Widespread consumption of guinea pig would certainly be one way to offset this damage. Ileus can be caused secondarily by an underlying illness or stressor which in turn causes your guinea pig to stop eating. We love the outdoors and train our dogs to explore the wild places with us, off-leash, as can be seen here: https://jumpshare.com/b/GniZ2SuBmyixVVwxzqII This is the way forward for our planet! Make sure your guinea pigs have access to fresh water all the time, and if it’s from a bottle make sure it works and your guinea pigs are able to extract the water. I completely agree that sustainable meat sources are the future and raising your own is probably the best way to go. 49 shares. As this is where guinea pigs were first eaten, it is believed that they tend to be cooked to a higher standard in these areas. A dying guinea pig will become very weak and unable to feed or water himself as his death approaches. The rearing of cattle produces a huge amount of greenhouse gasses, owing to the methane emitted by the cows when they release wind. The fact is that if you eat meat, you should accept that it comes from an animal. It resembles other cavies in having a robust body with short limbs, large head and eyes, and short ears. It is not a recent development that has seen guinea pigs end up on the plates of humans. Feed your guinea pig primarily green leafy vegetables. This is the Kichwa translation which comes from the high-pitched sound that the guinea pigs make. The animals — called cuyes in Spanish — are usually cooked whole, often grilled, sometimes deep fried. Keep it fresh. Miller, who is writing a book about the ecological benefits of eating unconventional meats, visited Colombia several years ago. Remember that even dogs are eaten in many countries and guinea pigs have been a source of nutritious food for the Inca for centuries. Urubamba, a Peruvian restaurant in Queens, wasn't serving guinea pig at all eight years ago. Then there is the consideration of rodents in mass numbers developing diseases. I spend my time wandering from one place to another without a clue what I am doing. People might appreciate eating meat more if they had to raise and slaughter the animal themselves. The Wheekwell Guide shows what your guinea pig should be eating every day and which vitamins they require. It is all about Guinea Pigs! In San Francisco, Diego Oka, a native of Peru and the executive chef of La Mar Cebicheria, serves imported Peruvian cuy every summer around Peru's July 28 Independence Day. Yes, you read that correctly. At this roadside food stand and many others like it in rural Peru, the house specialty is roasted guinea pig to go. Changes to a guinea pig’s diet must be done gradually. They're docile and easy to raise.". A frequent diet change, improper diet, or some other health issues … Changes in diet can have a serious impact on guinea pig’s health. We have never eaten guinea pig, but will not hesitate to try if it is offered. Guinea Pig Feeding Mistakes To Avoid. As I am carnivore, eating only meat, animal products and animal fat, I have no qualms about what meat I eat as long as it tastes good. There are four toes on the forefeet and three on the hind feet. You do not want your guinea pigs to struggle for air in their hard times. Or is it? Not going to lie, thinking about that as you’re pondering your menu choice isn’t helpful. The consensus seems to be that no matter your opinion on eating guinea pig from a moral point of view, the quality of the cooking tends to be make or break when it comes to enjoyment.Â. "But finding ways to reduce our carbon footprint is a good idea, and so is eating small livestock, like guinea pigs. Great post. Good luck with both projects! V let the warthog for thirty six hours, as we were told it has a very gamey taste. I know that’s ridiculous but sometimes it still turns my stomach.Â, The guinea pig arrived pre-cut into sections but complete with all of its limbs and head. South American restaurants on both coasts seem to be pushing the trend, answering to demand mostly from Andean expats for what is considered a fine and valuable food in Ecuador, Peru and Colombia. As you would expect, guinea pigs require much less food which makes them more cost-effective to raise. No skimping on plentiful grass hay, fresh water, and vitamin C. The guinea pig diet is mainly hay; we’re talking about 80% hay. Whilst this is pricey in comparison to most local dishes, it is generally only eaten on special occasions and is considered to be a delicacy in these areas. But, if you do, guinea pig meat is a healthy option. Guinea pig is most likely to stop eating if the food is too hard and/or unpalatable. I have heard and read a number of reports from people who say it tastes amazing and plenty from those who say it is chewy and fatty. Corn is a filler is a lot of dog foods and my dogs love carrots as a snack. The best we have ever done is this: https://jumpshare.com/v/ittYvQWPE9Kg9FCStsUQ?b=QiHas2GLri1UyPaeVVFH Now, Urubamba customers can expect cuy on the menu about one weekend each month. In Los Angeles, Helen Springut, co-founder of the adventurous eaters club Gastronauts, says guinea pig is a food worth pursuing only as a cultural experience. Travel fear #2: Surviving the Amazon Rainforest, 18 Photos That Will Inspire You To Visit The Galapagos Islands, https://jumpshare.com/v/ittYvQWPE9Kg9FCStsUQ?b=QiHas2GLri1UyPaeVVFH, https://jumpshare.com/b/GniZ2SuBmyixVVwxzqII. A lot of sugar in a guinea pig’s system could affect their gut by over-producing too much of the bad gut bacteria. Limit the guinea pig to one person each time. Now, the rodents are increasingly showing up on plates in the United States. Guinea pig food is essentially dried vegetation. Changing brands suddenly could trigger gastrointestinal upset or cause your guinea pig to stop eating pellets. This type of poop is usually smaller than healthy poop. The animals go for $17 a plate, each cuy splayed down the middle like a lobster and served with a front leg and a back, an eye, an ear and a nostril. Whilst guinea pigs aren’t the meatiest animal you could choose to eat, there are a number of benefits to picking this dish over other kinds of meat. La Mar Cebicheria's Chef Oka says cuy is "very oily, like pork combined with rabbit.". As for all the meat-eaters out there, I struggle a little with their outrage. Welcome to the Guinea Pig Manual. For more strange foods you can try in Ecuador, check out this post on jungle town Misahuallí! However, it was only once the South Americans began to bring guinea pigs into Europe that they first became pets. Whilst there is evidence to suggest Europeans have never commonly eaten guinea pig, that is not the case in South America. This can include antibiotic therapy, but sometimes surgery may be recommended. It always amazes me how many people are willing to eat meat but won’t acknowledge the process which has to happen for the food to reach our plates. If your guinea pig has hair loss and is itching or scratching a lot, it may have lice or mites. The feet have hairless soles and short sharp claws. Eating Cuy (Guinea Pig) October 25, 2011 By Dave. Courtesy of Curtiss Calleo Guinea Pig Sounds . I came upon this just now, for which thank you. I am not sure sending guinea pigs out to pasture would be as simple. A review of these common guinea pig care no-nos helps you avoid them so your guinea pig buddies live the good life. "They were encouraging people to switch from cattle to guinea pigs," Miller says. The good bacteria is a guinea pig’s gut is essential for breaking down and digesting complex foods, such as … Blend or mix a guinea pig "smoothie" that contains hay, water and ground up … Guinea pigs are small pets, but they require plenty of space, time, effort, and human interaction. I am actually based in Norfolk too – how funny! History of Guinea Pigs. 🙂. You should eat guinea pig meat because it is good for preventing arthritis, it enhances brain function, it has cancer preventing properties. The Little Rock-based humanitarian organization Heifer International, which assists communities in enhancing their economies and streamlining local food production, is also promoting guinea pig husbandry in Peru, Ecuador and Guatemala. Eating guinea pig in Ecuador With their big innocent eyes, cat-like whiskers and soft fluffy fur, guinea pigs make for great family pets. The thought of … Things as simple as moving the cage, introducing a new guinea pig, an upper respiratory infection, and even ectoparasites like lice can stress your guinea pig out enough so that it doesn't eat and develops ileus. We have and prepared right it is not bad at all. But there may be more to gain from eating guinea pig than bizarre foods bragging rights. That is, only let one person hold the guinea pig each time you get them out of the cage, especially if that person is a child. We all know that such gasses are bad for the environment which could lead us to conclude that guinea pig farms are a more environmentally friendly alternative. Matt Miller, an Idaho-based science writer with The Nature Conservancy, says rodents and other small livestock represent a low-impact meat alternative to carbon-costly beef. Hey I’m Sheree, the awkward British wanderluster behind Winging the World. In the United States, most guinea pigs intended for human consumption come from Peru as whole, frozen, hairless rodents in plastic bags. At one company, in Connecticut, imports have nearly doubled since 2008 — from 600 guinea pigs per year then to more than 1,000 today. A guinea pig only needs 4. Guinea Pig Losing Weight Despite Eating, in the context of medicine, health, or physical fitness, refers to a reduction of the total body mass, due to a mean loss of fluid, body fat or adipose tissue or lean mass, namely bone mineral deposits, muscle, tendon, and other connective tissue. hide caption. “Winging the World is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.”, The Environmental Impact of Eating Guinea Pig. Cattle require masses of land which has had a huge environmental impact. Neither would speak on record, but each said they are now importing more guinea pigs than ever before. Header photo by Nestor Lacle under CC by 2.0 Flickr.com. Across South America today, guinea pigs are known to the locals as Cuy. "There's a clear cultural prejudice against eating guinea pigs, and rodents in general, in the United States," Miller says. In fact, archaeologists believe that guinea pigs were first considered as a food source in 5,000BC! As we have seen from looking at the history of eating guinea pig, these little critters have been eaten for generations. The guinea pig or domestic guinea pig (Cavia porcellus), also known as cavy or domestic cavy (/ ˈ k eɪ v i /), is a species of rodent belonging to the family Caviidae and the genus Cavia.Despite their common name, guinea pigs are not native to Guinea, nor are they closely biologically related to pigs, and the origin of the name is still unclear.They originated in the Andes of South America. I do worry about what people will think when they find out. Woods says a guinea pig herd consisting of two males and 20 females can sustain itself while providing meat for a family of six. ... Peru, we knew that part of our culinary adventure had to be cuy or guinea pig. Your guinea pig may also have trouble eating. For all of the vegetarians that have just clicked the back button on their browser and all the meat-eaters crying ‘savage’ from behind their computers, allow me to explain a little bit about the history behind eating guinea pig and why eating guinea pig could just save the planet! Oka marinates and deep-fries his guinea pigs for a dish called cuy chactado. For many of us living in the UK and US, guinea pigs don’t get our mouths watering. Here you will learn all about guinea pigs: how to feed them, handle them, about their behaviour, how to choose a cage, bedding, about their health, social life, and much more – everything you need to know about guinea pig care in one place. Of Curtiss Calleo hide caption their own meat to get a 35kg warthog which. The skin is extra salty and is itching or scratching a lot of sugar in a consisting! Demand has climbed every year, according to Carlos Atorga, who is writing a book the! 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