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RubysMama
07-07-17, 08:24 am
Hello everyone! I'm a new-ish mama to our single piggie, RubySoho.
I've been lurking around here and gleaning all sorts of info so I thought it was time I introduced myself and joined in the fun.

We adopted our Ruby a couple of months ago, when an acquaintance needed to rehome her piggie. I knew little-to-nothing about guinea pigs and had a quick and steep learning curve. She came to us in a cage she had lived in for about a year or so, and her previous owners gave us the run down on what they were feeding her and how they were caring for her. Since they had her for a year we assumed they were doing all the right things.

We thought we were doing the right thing when we ran to the pet store and got a "guinea pig starter kit" so she could have a shiny new cage. And it was only AFTER spending $100+ on this 'starter set' that I learned all about proper cage sizes and guinea pig care.

I was devastated to learn that poor Ruby had not been properly cared for up til we took her in, and quickly committed to changing up a lot of things for her. She hadn't been given hay (I don't think at all) and was fed primarily pellet food and little to no fresh veggies. She had been in her wee little cage for mostly all day, and not handled much.

We moved her into a 2x4 set up, with a neverending supply of hay, and a fresh salad made with her favourite veggies every morning. She's active now and hilarious and spunky. She's still overweight but our vet is hopeful that she'll drop a bit of weight now that she's eating a better diet and moving around a bit more. She's healthy and happy, just a little extra pudge to carry around.

I've recently learned to sew and have taken to making her pretty new fleece cage liners and am learning how to sew some cute accessories for her (it's not perfect, but she's literally my guinea pig for my 'guinea pig accessory' sewing projects! Haha.

I adore Ruby, she's my little amigo now and now that we've got her all sorted out and I'm feeling good about my new role as a cavyslave, we're in the process of finding her a companion.

spy9doc
07-07-17, 09:05 am
Welcome to the Forum! Miss Ruby is one lucky little lady to have you take her in and care for her properly. :cool:

It sounds as though you are a quick study insofar as cavy care is concerned. I applaud you for doing your research and providing a wonderful new home for her.

Just one thing for you to consider which is the timing of the salad. I only feed greens once per day as well, but have found that feeding them in the late afternoon works best for us AND for the boys. With my previous cavies, I fed a salad twice a day but this meant that it was almost impossible to find someone to come to the house twice a day if we needed to be out of town. When we got our current boys, they were very young and had never had veggies. We decided that we would not feed veggies twice per day and set up the previous patterns. We generally feed them around 5pm and let me tell you that the dinner bell rings for them at that time. They will start looking out and pacing around to let us know that it's time. You could almost set your watch by their internal clock.

I probably should mention that they are permitted both hay and pellets 24/7. I do weigh them regularly to monitor their weight since I have one boy who borders on being overweight and the other who borders on being underweight. It seems to just be their individual physiology.

Guinea Pig Papa
07-07-17, 09:06 am
Congratulations on being Ruby's mama! I know you adore her and it sounds like you want only what's best for her. That's why, at this point, I would urge you to look for a friend for Ruby. I'm sure you've read all about how piggies are social animals, and they do much much better with a friend.

It sounds like you're off to a great start being a cavy slave!

RubysMama
07-07-17, 09:28 am
Welcome to the Forum! Miss Ruby is one lucky little lady to have you take her in and care for her properly. :cool:

It sounds as though you are a quick study insofar as cavy care is concerned. I applaud you for doing your research and providing a wonderful new home for her.

Just one thing for you to consider which is the timing of the salad. I only feed greens once per day as well, but have found that feeding them in the late afternoon works best for us AND for the boys. With my previous cavies, I fed a salad twice a day but this meant that it was almost impossible to find someone to come to the house twice a day if we needed to be out of town. When we got our current boys, they were very young and had never had veggies. We decided that we would not feed veggies twice per day and set up the previous patterns. We generally feed them around 5pm and let me tell you that the dinner bell rings for them at that time. They will start looking out and pacing around to let us know that it's time. You could almost set your watch by their internal clock.

I probably should mention that they are permitted both hay and pellets 24/7. I do weigh them regularly to monitor their weight since I have one boy who borders on being overweight and the other who borders on being underweight. It seems to just be their individual physiology.

Thanks! Yes, I've considered moving her salad to later in the day - but I wouldn't hear the end of it. If I even dare to go make my coffee pot before feeding her she wheeks and jumps and whistles like mad. It would be a torturous few days of adjusting if I changed her meal time. We do have to go away for a weekend in a month or so, so you're probably right on about making it at a time when it would be easier for our piggy-sitter to pop in and feed her.

RubysMama
07-07-17, 09:30 am
Congratulations on being Ruby's mama! I know you adore her and it sounds like you want only what's best for her. That's why, at this point, I would urge you to look for a friend for Ruby. I'm sure you've read all about how piggies are social animals, and they do much much better with a friend.

It sounds like you're off to a great start being a cavy slave!

We're already on the look out for a new companion for Ruby. She's come a long way, and is such a sweetheart, but she needs a piggie companion. AS much as I love her deeply, she needs one of her own to play with and hang out with. I am trying to find her a companion via anywhere other than PetSmart - we live in a small town so it's taking a bit of time to find her one.

Saylavi
07-07-17, 04:26 pm
Hello and welcome!

Guinea Pig Papa
07-08-17, 06:32 am
I'm so glad to hear that! Ruby will feel so much better with another of her own kind to talk to!


We're already on the look out for a new companion for Ruby. She's come a long way, and is such a sweetheart, but she needs a piggie companion. AS much as I love her deeply, she needs one of her own to play with and hang out with. I am trying to find her a companion via anywhere other than PetSmart - we live in a small town so it's taking a bit of time to find her one.

RubysMama
07-08-17, 06:09 pm
I'm so glad to hear that! Ruby will feel so much better with another of her own kind to talk to!

We actually came upon a female needing to be rehomed, so I think we may have found a new piggie!

Now I'm frantically reading and learning about how to actually introduce someone new to Ruby, she's only ever been alone and so has the one we're thinking of getting. I'm good with Ruby, but now I'm feeling pretty nervous about adding a second - but she'll be so happy to have a friend.

bpatters
07-08-17, 07:31 pm
Here's the bible on guinea pig introductions: http://guinea-pigs.livejournal.com/3002707.html

RubysMama
07-10-17, 06:59 am
Here's the bible on guinea pig introductions: http://guinea-pigs.livejournal.com/3002707.html

Yes, thank you - that was amazing info!
We've found a few options for adding to our piggie family - a person close by to me is rehoming her three piggies and their C&C cage and all of their goodies. We're in communication about it now - fingers crossed! I'm hoping this works out, they look adorable in the photo and seem very well cared for - proper cage size, proper hay and accessories and they seem active from the pictures.

CavyTV
07-10-17, 02:51 pm
Welcome to the forums! I'm so glad to hear that you've researched :D Not many people do unfortunately. I believe Ruby is in great hands. With 3 possible friends I'm sure she'll be very happy. You sound like a great first time piggie owner!