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View Full Version : 3-piggie intro... how & where???



homeschoolmama
12-04-05, 09:59 pm
Okay, we're picking up the coroplast first thing tuesday morning, and introductions will be in the early evening because that seems to be when all 3 boys are on their best behavior. I'll be getting the coroplast ready, and my husband will put the grids together & assemble the cage, while I supervise their together-time. We've got a brand new set of Christmasey fleece for them so nothing will smell territorial, and each of the boys have their own bed. We'll wash them, but since there's one for everyone we're planning on keeping them.

For the first meeting, is it better to have a smallish area so I can get to them in case of a problem, or a larger area so nobody feels threatened? And should we plop one piggie in each corner simultaneously, or should we put them in one at a time... Oreo, then Mr. Pigg, then our alpha-piggie Junior? And is it better to have TONS of toys out, or maybe just a few? And should we set food out for the first intro, or would that be asking for trouble? All 3 are used to getting treats during floortime, so I'm inclined to have them, if it isn't a terrible idea.

When we introduced our first two, we used a small-pet playpen with 2 extra grid panels - about the same as 10 grids, set up in a circle. Now our playpen is a 20-grid circle, and I'm just a little worried that it might be a touch big for a first meeting. Oh yeah... and apparently we did intros wrong the first time. We let them have playtime together for about 2 hours each day for a whole week, and they kept re-meeting & going over the whole dominance "thing" each day. How long should we wait until actually letting them into the cage together?

Corrine
12-04-05, 10:12 pm
Well I've done a three-pig intro and then later a five-pig intro. I blocked off my small kitchen area, put a clean piece of fleece on the floor and some hay in the middle. I held on to a couple and my husband had the others. We put them down around the same time and allowed them to find each other. I sat on the floor with them with a towel handy in case there was an all out brawl. Luckily, both times went fairly well - just a lot of rumbles and butt-sniffing, some snapping here and there, and a bit of chasing, and that was it! Never any blood or all out wrestling.

After the initial introductions went well, I stayed in the kitchen with them for about an hour, where they continued checking one another out and eating some hay. Then I put them in the freshly cleaned and rearranged cage, where the rumbling, sniffing etc. continued off and on for a couple days, and presto, a herd of 5 sows happily (for the most part) coexisting!

cavy-cool-crazy
12-05-05, 03:34 am
For the first meeting, is it better to have a smallish area so I can get to them in case of a problem, or a larger area so nobody feels threatened? And should we plop one piggie in each corner simultaneously, or should we put them in one at a time... Oreo, then Mr. Pigg, then our alpha-piggie Junior? And is it better to have TONS of toys out, or maybe just a few? And should we set food out for the first intro, or would that be asking for trouble? All 3 are used to getting treats during floortime, so I'm inclined to have them, if it isn't a terrible idea

Larger would be better, so that they have the space to run if they need to. Generally I advise no pigloos to start with - it caused big trouble when I tried introducing my pigsters the first time.

As for who to put in and when...it's up to you on that one. Depending on your pigs' temperaments, they may do better with all of them introduced at the same time, or, like my Charlie, Tuppy and Lottie, the new piggy may prefer to befriend one pig and then befriend a second after a few minutes alone with one of the 'original' pigsters.

Toys would be fine, like blankets, other cozies and so on as long as they have been washed. Not too many, but certainly enough to distract them and keep them occupied if they want to play.

If you want to give the pigs hay, pellets and veggies as soon as you introduce then go ahead. It often provides a distraction, therefore giving all the piggies more time to adjust to the new smells and sounds of the others before they start 'checking each other out'.


How long should we wait until actually letting them into the cage together?
As soon as you are happy that they're getting along alright then go ahead and pop them in the cage. Ideally it shouldn't be when there is constant chasing, mounting and nipping, but when things have calmed down a little. You should know when to put them in anyway - a 'sixth sense' kinda thing told me that they were getting along well enough to go in the same cage.

Lyndsay
12-05-05, 08:45 am
Larger will definatly be better, and maybe start in the early morning, even though that isn't their best time, that way you will be able to supervise them through out the day, and maybe by the end of the night have them all together living in peace. Good luck. ;)

Herbie Girl
12-05-05, 08:46 am
Thanks for that info. I will have to introduce my two girls pretty soon. The new piggie is very shy and won't let me touch her so I might have to get her use to handling before I introduce them





Becky

Sabriel
12-05-05, 09:26 am
Make sure hidey houses have multiple exits. We have had that problem a lot as of late where a bully pig will trap a weeker pig in a pigloo and harass them.

Ly&Pigs
12-05-05, 11:11 am
Large spaces really are not necessary. Doing intro's on the couch or in the brand new cage would be acceptable. Have you read the information on introductions at www.cavyspirit.com/sociallife.htm?