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msmarti58
09-30-15, 11:01 pm
Hi. I adopted a sick guinea pig from a friend who has neither money nor time anymore for him now that he is ill. I pigsat for him about three times in the past, but this last time I found a mass on his belly and it has turned out to be non invasive mammary cancer. He is 5. He has always been cooped up in a very small cage and all alone, so I decided to adopt him and get him two buddies, which I bought at a pet store. They suggested I get the outgoing piggie and then I fell in love with a small Black and Tan one. Their names are Lightning (5 yr old), Squiggy, dominant male, and Lenny, shy scaredy cat, both babies. From the beginning Squiggy has harassed Lenny to the point that Lenny was bleeding from his ear, and he has a lot of scabs on him which I am not sure were inflicted by Squiggy or previously. They were both in separate glass cages at the pet store. I have decided to let them have playtime together as long as I am observing, but am now keeping Lenny in his own cage for overnight which is in an L shape to the other one. Bought a jumbo C&C cage 2x6 and put Lenny in a Midwest cage that I had bought previously. Now Squiggy chases him pretty much nonstop and Lenny runs as fast as he can and hides. Can I ever dare hope that they could all live together? Going broke on cages, fleece, kitchens, etc.

msmarti58
09-30-15, 11:14 pm
These are my three!

76578

msmarti58
09-30-15, 11:15 pm
Left to right, Lightning, Squiggy, Lenny.

bpatters
10-01-15, 07:28 am
Guinea pig introductions: http://guinea-pigs.livejournal.com/3002707.html

Separating them and putting them back together repeatedly just slows the relationship process down. They're wired to establish dominance, and every time you separate them and put them back together, they start all over again from square one.

poop_patrol
10-01-15, 10:19 am
Thank you for taking in the sick pig! I know it is too late, but next time the best way to find a buddy for a pig is to contact a reputable rescue and allow your pig to select his own buddy.

For your current situation, read the link bpatters referenced and follow the procedure. 3 boars is a difficult situation but workable if you follow introduction best practices and provide extra space.

Best of luck to you!

msmarti58
10-01-15, 01:48 pm
I haven't separated them repeatedly. I only removed Lenny when I found out he was bleeding from his ear. I have read that you leave them all together UNLESS blood is drawn.

msmarti58
10-01-15, 01:50 pm
Lightning (the first one, the one with cancer), gets along with everybody. Yeah, Squiggy kind of tries to bug him but he just raises his head and has nothing to do with him. It's the two new ones who don't get along. Bought them both together at the pet store. They assured me that everybody would get along. I was clueless at the time. I just put them all in together, but then I kept hearing Lenny squeal repeatedly and it's never gotten better, only worse. When blood was drawn that is when I separated Lenny.

bpatters
10-01-15, 02:09 pm
I have decided to let them have playtime together as long as I am observing, but am now keeping Lenny in his own cage for overnight

Sorry. That sounds to me as if you're putting them together for playtime and then removing Lenny. That's putting them together and separating them, repeatedly.

Read the link I gave you in post #4 (https://www.guineapigcages.com/forum/usertag.php?do=list&action=hash&hash=4) . You can take them all out, thoroughly clean the cage so that nothing in it smells like any pig, give them a buddy bath, and try putting them back together after you introduce them in a large neutral space.

msmarti58
10-03-15, 11:36 pm
Sorry. That sounds to me as if you're putting them together for playtime and then removing Lenny. That's putting them together and separating them, repeatedly.

Read the link I gave you in post #4 (https://www.guineapigcages.com/forum/usertag.php?do=list&action=hash&hash=4) . You can take them all out, thoroughly clean the cage so that nothing in it smells like any pig, give them a buddy bath, and try putting them back together after you introduce them in a large neutral space.

Yeah did all that yesterday but no change. Lenny just freaks whenever he sees Squiggy and Squiggy seeks him out just to bully him doesn't matter how much space I give them.

msmarti58
10-04-15, 12:05 am
Thank you for taking in the sick pig! I know it is too late, but next time the best way to find a buddy for a pig is to contact a reputable rescue and allow your pig to select his own buddy.

For your current situation, read the link @bpatters (https://www.guineapigcages.com/forum/member.php?u=13820) referenced and follow the procedure. 3 boars is a difficult situation but workable if you follow introduction best practices and provide extra space.

Best of luck to you!

Where do I find that link? Thanks.

bpatters
10-04-15, 09:21 am
In post #4 (https://www.guineapigcages.com/forum/usertag.php?do=list&action=hash&hash=4) on this thread.

msmarti58
10-04-15, 10:09 pm
Okay, have done everything now. Put them both on couch today with me but became a ball of fur twice and Lenny got bit again and was bleeding. I then tried the neutral territory in bathroom thing. Squiggy butt nudged Lenny but that's all. Lenny wouldn't move from the one spot. Then he did go up to the hay but just stood still. I considered that a success? And put them back in the cage minus igloos and minus Lightning who just doesn't need this crap for right now. It's an uneasy truce. Lenny has taken up residence in the kitchen coroplast insert and Squiggy just runs around. If he gets too near Lenny Lenny will run and Squiggy chases. Squiggy seems to want out to go be with Lightning who is adjacent, keeps chewing on the cage door. Or else just wants out into the play area. They really can't seem to stand each other. I just don't get it.

bpatters
10-04-15, 10:24 pm
If you're introducing three pigs, you need to put them all together at once. Otherwise, you always trying to introduce a singleton to a pair, and it's a never-ending circle. If you want three to live together, you'll just have to suffer through the initial squabbles.

But, it sounds like the two that are together are doing just fine. You just need to develop some patience, a lot of patience. This is not a quick process, and it will take time for them to work out which one is the dominant pig.

Are you doing this at a time when you've got hours to devote to it? Because the basic idea is to give them a lot of time in the big neutral area, and only put them in the thoroughly cleaned cage when they've tired themselves out.

msmarti58
10-04-15, 11:16 pm
Lightning already gets along with everyone. Just nervous because he's 5 and has cancer and needs his rest and his igloo. Wanted to concentrate on just the two squabbling ones. I just did it for 20 minutes or so. Don't have the time right now. Lots going on here right now. Getting house ready for sale, etc.

msmarti58
10-04-15, 11:17 pm
P.s. Worried about them not having their individual igloos. Feel mean for having taken them away.

msmarti58
10-04-15, 11:25 pm
Sorry I guess I just give up. Whatever I do always seems to be the wrong thing. They will just have to work it out, I guess. I wanted guinea pigs who would all cuddle up together.

CritterSlave
10-05-15, 12:11 am
When you do intros they need to all be in that large area for hours not for 20 minutes. And I mean all. If you want any chance of these three at the very least cohabitatin peacefully you need to follow the instructions given to you by the people who have owned dozens of these animals over the course of decades. Working with animals can be stressful and time consuming and if you aren't willing to dedicate the time and energy into proper introductions they will pretty much have no chance of getting along. If the two troublemakers finally worth through their issues and you just throw the third pig in there with them it can go and undo the hard work you put in trying to get the first two to get along.

msmarti58
10-05-15, 12:31 am
Listen, I don't need lectured by a bunch of know it alls who are all probably a bunch of kids, I am almost 60. I will be leaving this board. Have fun picking on the newbies.

CritterSlave
10-05-15, 12:35 am
You asked for advice. You got advice. You ignored it. How is this the forums fault?

CritterSlave
10-05-15, 12:48 am
Sad that a 32 year old is more mature than a 60 something year old. I'm sorry you didn't get a pat on the back for not listening to bpatters but for the sake of the tiny lives in your care I highly suggest swallowing your pride and taking the advice she gave you. She knows her stuff and has been working with the animals for decades.

msmarti58
10-05-15, 12:53 am
Been picked on on every animal board I've ever been on, not putting up with it anymore. That's all.

msmarti58
10-05-15, 12:54 am
I listened I did it all. Didn't work. The end.

msmarti58
10-05-15, 12:55 am
Cat board dog board now Guinea pig board. Always know it alls. Want off.

CritterSlave
10-05-15, 12:56 am
You aren't being picked on. The people here have some of the largest amounts of experience with Guinea pigs than anywhere else and the advice you gain here far surpasses any you will see elsewhere. We at this forum do not stroke egos, and we will not pat you on the back for going against tried and true practices with these animals. Our first priority is the health and safety of your pigs not giving you the warm and fuzzies. -edited for autocorrect

msmarti58
10-05-15, 01:09 am
I will just step away then. Trying to find a way to get unsubscribed. How can I leave? I am very stressed right now trying to sell my house and spent so much money on these guinea pigs, thousands. Got the biggest cage I could find. At wits end. Fleece, more cages, more toys, more fleece for new cage, on and on. Broke and in debt. Thought it would be like mice rats and gerbils, all of which I have had. No issues. Have had cats. Have a dog. Am a VERY good pet owner love them more than people.

msmarti58
10-05-15, 01:10 am
Don't need lectured like I'm a recalcitrant child. I did as suggested. Out of ideas. The cage is still too small for three boars.

CritterSlave
10-05-15, 01:24 am
But you didn't follow the advice you were given. If you did all three pigs would be in a neutral area for multiple hours and be returned to an impeccably cleaned cage only after all three were getting along. Guinea pigs are nothing like any of the other companion rodents as you may have noticed. All the more reason to take the advice of the people who chose to help you. I do have to ask though since you say you are broke and in debt how will you be able to give the pig with cancer any medical attention he will most surely need? If the pig who was bitten develops an abscess which is very common and difficult to treat in this animals, will you be able to get him the mess and potential surgery that comes with abscess surgery? Exotic vets are very expensive and by ignoring the advice you have been given there is a good chance that will lead to a one way ticket to massive vet bills. Once again our first priority is the health and welfare of these animals not the egos and pride of their owners. If you want someone that will hold your hand and look the other way while you ignore the advice of expiriance do keepers you are in the wrong place. If you want the best advice for Guinea pig care and people who are devoted to the safety and welfare of these complex little critters then you found it.

CritterSlave
10-05-15, 01:27 am
The problem is as long as you do not follow the advice that bpatters gave you, it doesn't matter what size cage they have it just will not work with 3 boars until you follow those instructions like they are law. Even then there is still a chance that a trio of boars will not get along. That can't even be determined until intros are done properly.

msmarti58
10-05-15, 04:12 am
Well sorry, I can't do anymore, as I said. Too exhausted, no time. If it doesn't work I will just keep them all separate or give to rescue. I thought they would be an inexpensive pet for the condo I'm moving into.

lissie
10-05-15, 09:38 am
Here's my recommendation. Since you'll be moving, keep them separated for now. Plan to do at least 4 hours long introduction after the move. The new place will be their new territory.

Before putting all of them into the same cage, wash everything with white vinegar. Wipe down the cage bars, coroplast, water bottles, and bowls with white vinegar. This will help remove all their scents from the cage. If you have any wooden items that you can't wash, put it away for now.

If you can build your own cage, you can make it bigger. A 3x5 or 3x6 will work better. See this link: https://www.guineapigcages.com/howto.htm

All hideys in the cage must have multiple doors, so they can't trap each other. Fleece scraps draped over the corners will work well for this. They can run through and hide under, without trapping each other. Each pig needs his own hidey, don't expect them to share. Same goes with food bowls and water bottles.
Also will help if you put piles of hay at different ends of the cage.

I find that it helps to keep them on disposable bedding the first few weeks together. I throw a pile of hay or veggies into the cage when they look like they're about to fight.

Also see this link for helpful tips.
http://www.guinealynx.info/forums/viewtopic.php?t=46468