Can Guinea Pigs See In The Dark? Do They Need Light?

Can Guinea Pigs See In The Dark

Guinea pigs are a great pet to have around. Owning one will have you wondering a lot about them. One of the things you may wonder is when the sunset and it becomes dark. Would they be able to see at night and would they need a night light?

Can guinea pigs see in the dark? At night, guinea pigs have limited vision. These creatures are diurnal, which means they are active during the day and sleep at night.  If they need to move around at night, they’ll use their whiskers, smell, and hearing.

How Well Can Guinea Pigs See?

Guinea Pig Eating

Guinea pigs aren’t known for having a really good vision. Their vision is capable of helping them move around when there’s some light.

One of the key features that the guinea pigs possess is their 340-degree field of vision. In the wild, this wide range of vision is very important. It could mean life and death for them. Their vision allows them to detect approaching predators from every corner, which will help them escape quickly.

In addition, guinea pigs are able to see in color. In their natural habitat, a lot of predators are camouflaged into their surroundings. Being able to see in colors gives the guinea pigs an advantage over their predators.

During the day, their vision is perfect, and can see everything. At dusk and dawn, when there’s little light, they are able to see enough to be able to find their way around.

At night, their vision is bad, and won’t be able to see anything. Instead, their vision is replaced by the other senses that they have.

Do Guinea Pigs Like the Dark?

Guinea pigs do like the dark. These creatures are crepuscular, which means they are most active at twilight.

They will usually be most active at dawn and dusk. These creatures are at the bottom of the food chain so they are prey to a lot of other animals. During these times of the day is when they feel most comfortable to come out and do their business.

Therefore, if you notice your guinea pigs are moving around and playing in the dark, it’s nothing to worry about.

Do Guinea Pigs Need Light at Night?

Guinea pigs don’t need light at night. They are comfortable at night and can move around safely.

In the wild, at night, when there is no moon, it will almost be total darkness in their environment. These creatures have adapted to this environment for hundreds of years.

As for your guinea pigs, they are accustomed to the night and will need no lights.

Also, you’ll want to replicate their environment as much as possible. By keeping the lights on all night long, it could disrupt their normal rhythms and sleeping patterns.

How Do Guinea Pigs Navigate Their Way Around?

Guinea pigs have a 340-degree field of vision, which allows them to see everything around them. However, at night, guinea pigs have bad vision and will need to depend on their other senses.

The 4 senses that guinea pigs rely on at night is their hearing, smell, memory, and whiskers. These are the only things they need to navigate safely through the night.

Their hearing is exceptional and able to hear everything clearly around them. This helps them avoid danger and prevent becoming prey.

Next, the guinea pigs use their nose to smell at night. Their sense of smell is greater than those of humans. It’s able to detect the scent of other animals in a distance so it can avoid them.

Another great sense is their memory. Guinea pigs have a very sharp memory and able to remember everything. A guinea pig’s burrow can sometimes become very complex with many tunnels. These creatures are able to remember complex routes to find their way around.

When they move around at night above ground, they will memorize their surrounding. As they pass objects at night, they will memorize them so they can find their way back into their burrow.

Finally, their whiskers are the last thing that helps them navigate it at night. These whiskers are known as vibrissae, which have several roles to help the guinea pigs at night. One of the things is to help the guinea pig measure distances of how far things are.

The other thing the whiskers do is feel for objects to avoid running into them.


Guinea pigs don’t have that great of vision to start with and at night, it’s even worse. This is the reason why these creatures are crepuscular. If they need to move around at night, they have their other senses to help guide them around.

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