View Full Version : So I made a mistake and bought from a pet store....

05-09-15, 09:51 am
Hello! I am the very concerned, worried and excited owner of two wonderful girls. They will soon become 5-? guinea pigs since one had become pregnant at the pet store when we bought what we and 2 of our first vets thought were boys! That's right 2 vets, exotic vets nonetheless. My fiance and i purchased our pigs (also i would like to state i will never under any circumstances buy from a pet shop again rather than rescuing.) and noticed one of them (Howie) starting to bloat very slightly. We took them a week after we purchased them to the exotic vet closest to our house to make sure of the sex and get a general check up and make sure they were alright since we had then learned of the horrors that are pet stores. We found out we were feeding them incorrectly (too much of the wrong veggies) and altered diet accordingly. It was confirmed they were boys. Howie continued to grow and we took him to another vet since we didn't feel the first was very experienced and helpful. The vet examined Howie and said "if he wasn't a boy i would think he was pregnant". No improvement so we found another vet. Third vet with 20 years experience explained that if Howie was a boy he had no penis and was a miracle of science since he was pregnant with at least 3 little ones and the vet would need to write a paper on him. Fearing for Howie I immediately set up our pet store cage to separate her from her cage mate Eddie that we still assumed was a boy. Curiosity got the best of me, and my fiance and i tried sexing our Eddie 3 times with no penis to speak of. So our lovely ladies are still together and i am in desperate need of help.
I LOVE my girls and i am trying to do everything we can for them. If anyone has any advice on how to care for my laddies in this intense time please let me know. We will be keeping the litter/pups/babies. I know we can provide them with a great home and LOTS of love. My fiance works from home so that is a HUGE factor. But please any advice for a first time cavy owner with an unexpected pregnancy would be great. Also in my opinion breeding is so wrong. especially with how young my poor girl is (anywhere from 7-11 weeks when she got pregnant). No matter how great my experience may go I am horrified at the thought that i may loose all the babies and my beloved Howie in the process. Yes it can sound fun but is it really worth the life or your girl when there are so many amazing pigs just waiting for a loving home? With that i am still where i am and i still would love any advice anyone can give to help my girl and her babies survive this experience. And to keep Eddie happy as well since she is with her in the same cage.

05-09-15, 10:33 am
I don't have any experience with pregnancies so I don't have any pregnancy-related advice for you but I wanted to send some positive thoughts your way! I also made the mistake of buying my very first guinea pig from a pet store and it can be rough. In my case, she was sick and had to be treated for a couple of different illnesses within a couple months of having her. I have also learned my lesson the hard way. I now buy all of my supplies either online or at local stores that don't sell animals because I don't even want to tempt myself to buy from big chains again, nor support animal sales.

The only piece of advice I can give you is to relax and take it a day at a time. It sounds like you have heard horror stories online and you're freaking yourself out. Keep researching about what to expect and how to care for your pigs properly. Definitely find a vet that is knowledgable about guinea pigs to help you through the pregnancy. That being said, just enjoy your piggies and take it one step at a time. There are very knowledgable people on this forum that can help you out with nearly every situation. Good luck and keep us updated!

05-10-15, 09:38 pm
Thanks so much. I'd be completely lost with out everything I've been able to read online. I'll be sure to have a ton more pictures when the little ones come. It's so freaking feeling them move and seeing how large Howie is getting. She is eating and drinking and her pelvis has separated from what we can tell...

05-10-15, 09:43 pm
Do you know how many babies there are?

05-10-15, 10:00 pm
Good Luck! :)

05-10-15, 10:07 pm
Here are some links to help you sex guinea pigs, even if you are sure Eddie is a girl then you will still have to sex Howie's babies. Remember baby boys need to be separated when they are three weeks old. If you at any point feel unsure of the genders you could also try taking clear photos of their genitalia and posting the images up here to get our opinions.


05-11-15, 09:36 am
Welcome to the forums and I have to say I love your third vet. :) Go to the medical thread you will find plenty of information on pregnancy. I have learned so much about piggies just by reading. Also you said you have them in a store bought cage, you really need to see about getting them into a C&C cage as quickly as possible as they don't have enough room in a store bought cage. If you can't find the grids or are tight one funds, you can go to Home Depot and purchase polycarbonate sheets. I am on call every three weeks and move into my parents house to help with getting my child to school. I recently took two sheets of the PC, made 12" sides all the way around and now have a 4'x4' box they stay in at my parents house. Best of luck to you and happy labor and delivery for mama to be.

05-11-15, 02:52 pm
Sorry if I wasn't clear on the cages. We currently have both girls in a 4x2 c&c cage with the store bought cage next to it in case Eddie starts a fight with Howie or the babies. Should be at least 3 babies so we will be extending the cage to a 5x3 with loft when the little ones get big enough not to get through the grids. Splitting it in half as well as soon as it hits 3 weeks if there are any boys as well.

05-11-15, 02:55 pm

05-11-15, 03:32 pm
My best wishes that Howie has a safe and easy delivery. Your piggies are so cute. Their coloring are so similar that I assume that they are really actual sisters. In that case Eddie will be a true auntie in every sense of the word. :)

05-11-15, 03:39 pm
Yay!! We are on a baby watch again!! (last preggo thread was fun)
Good Luck, keep us posted.

05-11-15, 06:16 pm
It should be fine; most guinea pigs give birth and clean up before you even realize it and need no help at all. Since you are planning on keeping them all, make you sure you realize that some may be boys and you will need a separate cage for them so there aren't any more pregnancies. The boys need to be separated from the girls at three weeks (21 days). Good luck and post pigtures once they are born!

05-11-15, 08:19 pm
looks like i was wrong about the pelvis. It's nice realizing i have Eddie for a control. Also will Eddie help nurse or just help clean or what really does another female pig do to help? I think we'll try sexing ourselves then take them to the vet for a check up and confirmation. The vet said we should be expecting at least 3 babies. the male she mated with we think was a rivet. Is that a recessive or dominant trait?

05-11-15, 08:39 pm
I wonder if you misunderstood the vet. I never heard of the word "rivet" applied to guinea pigs.

05-11-15, 10:09 pm
Oh. I'm using it in reference to the guinea pigs with lots of cowlicks, the messy hair ones. Don't honestly remember where I got that word.

05-15-15, 01:51 pm
So I was thinking of an Abyssinian since they have rosettes. Must have mixed that up with rivet. So if it's a mix do the babies tend to have rosettes?

05-15-15, 01:54 pm
My abby mix had way more rosettes when she was young than she does now. They're all about gone.

05-15-15, 02:18 pm
The person I got my abby mix from had 4 babies: 1 with a couple of rosettes and 3 smooth coats. The mom was an abby and the dad was an american smooth coat.

05-15-15, 02:56 pm
A friend of mine had a litter of 5 and two were smooth and three were abby's. The mom was American and the dad was an abby.

05-15-15, 03:02 pm
Thank you so much for all the info. I am trying to focus on random things. Every day is a panic when I'm at work since I'm worried something will go wrong, or it will be perfect and I'll miss it. My fiancÚ works from home so at least he'll be there.

05-15-15, 10:01 pm
i want to add something but I'm not sure this will be much help anyways: I recently adopted a female guinea pig named Rosemary, as a friend for Cinnamon. Their both female. Little did I know that Rosemary was pregnant, the previous owner didn't tell me... I came back from vacation when my dad said that she gave birth. Rosemary gave birth to 4 babies, all very healthy. She hasn't had any post-complications. Since I didn't know she was pregnant: I fed her normal diets, and treated her as a normal pig. I am very lucky that there wasn't a single problem during the delievery, especialy since no one was there to assist her. Everything was fine. Rosemary was just over 1 year old when I got her. You should be fine, don't over think it because animals all give birth naturally so you might not have to assist as much as you think. Well good luck, and don't worry, after al baby guinea pigs are the cutest animals ever! I wish you the best, and sorry if this post wasn't as helpful as you hoped.

05-15-15, 10:08 pm
Don't forget to seperate the boys and girls at 3 weeks, and a good thing to do is to weigh the babies to make sure their all growing up well. They start eating, hay, and pellets after a day old so don't worry about special foods, they usually are weaned by 3 weeks old. Make sure their isn't a male in the cage during the delivery, because they will mate with the female RIGHT after all the babies are out. If you do attend the delivery, don't bud in, or assist unless there's an emergency because it can stress the mother, and don't clean up the mess because the mom needs to do that in order to produce milk. Good Luck (again!) Bye!

05-16-15, 02:19 am
Hi. I brought home my baby girl who was very young as well (approx.7weeks) but pregnant and 3 weeks ago she had a baby boy. The birth happened at night and everything went really well. The next day our little one started running around and even tried to eat hay. I was worried sick when she started to get bigger but eventually I calmed down and just hoped that everything is going to be fine. And now it is fine. Little boy is 248grams at 3 weeks of age and mother is happy and energetic (separated at 20 days). And aunty who is Ginger's (the mother) cagemate acted really nicely towards the little one so I'm sure there's nothing to worry about and the pet store cage is unnecessary :).
You can read my story here: http://www.guineapigcages.com/forum/threads/106919-The-story-of-how-I-turned-out-to-be-pregnant
Stay strong, everything will be fine :)

05-16-15, 07:34 am
Thank you for the advice Popcorn321 and elinak9. Woke up this morning to 3 adorable babies. one black abby (like the supposed dad) One black and orange like the mom and a random black orange and white. Pictures incoming they have just been nursing all morning. Haven't even weighed them yet. hopped on here to try not to bother them. All look wonderful and healthy. It also explains Howies fervent insistence on veggies at 5 am.

05-16-15, 08:04 am
Oh and I keep forgetting to mention our other girl Eddie seems to be pregnant as well but with only one. This is going to be a much larger herd than we anticipated. But it will definitely be worth it looking at the little guys

05-16-15, 08:54 am
Yay! Glad everything went okay! Can't wait to see pictures. I love how baby guinea pigs are born looking like miniature adults and start running around right away. :)

05-16-15, 11:38 am
Congratulations on the little babies! Hope Eddie gives birth just as smoothly as Howie did.

Also, are you going to keep the names Howie and Eddie since you now know they are girls? or are you going to keep the names? just curious...

05-16-15, 03:39 pm
I'm so happy to hear that everything went fine with the delivery. Three new little babies. That's so exciting.

05-16-15, 04:21 pm
They weigh nothing and are so fast! Weighing them was a heart attack

05-16-15, 04:52 pm
They weigh nothing and are so fast! Weighing them was a heart attack

I have a digital kitchen scale and I put jet in a high sided bowl. She is freaked out and does not move.

05-17-15, 08:06 pm

05-17-15, 08:07 pm

05-17-15, 08:10 pm
They're beautiful!!! So much cuteness~~~

05-20-15, 04:02 am
Oh my, so cute! I'm glad everything turned out fine. They look healthy pups to me. Congrats! :)

05-20-15, 09:52 am
Thanks so much!
I woke up to our last little one. Eddie finally gave birth to her one pup. I now have a happy and what seems to be healthy heard of 6 guinea pigs. I think I hit the lottery because it looks like only one of the 4 pups is a boy so we can have him neutered and stay with the family. (we will be separating him after 3 weeks)

05-20-15, 09:54 am
also piggsters we are keeping the boy names and have now made a theme of it where we will be naming all the girls male names and the boy a female name.

05-20-15, 01:48 pm
Thank you for the advice @Popcorn321 (http://www.guineapigcages.com/forum/member.php?u=34887) and @elinak9 (http://www.guineapigcages.com/forum/member.php?u=34496). Woke up this morning to 3 adorable babies. one black abby (like the supposed dad) One black and orange like the mom and a random black orange and white. Pictures incoming they have just been nursing all morning. Haven't even weighed them yet. hopped on here to try not to bother them. All look wonderful and healthy. It also explains Howies fervent insistence on veggies at 5 am.

that's great! What a coincidence i had four babies similar colors! : one white, orange, and brown (like mommy), another brown and white (like mommy), a black one (like the supposed dad), and a balck and orange one (like supposed dad), ALL abyssinians! I'm happy they're healthy, and best wishes!

05-21-15, 08:47 am
I dont know if I should make a new post for this but Howie has taken over caring for all 4 babies and won't let Eddie sit with them. Eddies is looking really sad and lonely but she wasn't the best mom at the beginning and I still haven't seen her nurse for sure. As soon as Howie leaves the little one Eddie will go in and cuddle all the babies. When Howie comes back she freaks out at Eddie and kicks her out and there is room for all of them. Any ideas on what to do?

05-21-15, 09:39 am
I'd leave them be. Guinea pig moms are pretty indiscriminate when it comes to caring for the pups, which will nurse from any available female.

But what are they in that there's "room for all of them?" They shouldn't have any hidey that only has one door so that no pig can be blocked from getting in or out. You could take the hideys out and drape fleece or towels over the corner of the cage until they're all older.

05-21-15, 09:54 am
It's a bunk bed madr of grids where they are on the bottom level.

05-21-15, 10:08 am
If one pig can keep another out of it, or can trap another one in it, then open it up or take it out until the pups are older.

05-21-15, 10:17 am
Thanks. I'll take them out and keep you posted. Thanks so much!