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Bonding Boar Pairs

GuineaPigParent36

Active Member
Cavy Slave
Joined
Mar 3, 2024
Messages
20
My boar Harley is 2.5 years old. I adopted him two years ago to bond to my other boar Peanut Butter but the pairing didn’t work. They lived next to each other and socialized a lot until Peanut Butter passed away a few months ago. Now he’s next to my two sows but he isn’t socializing as much with them. With Peanut Butter, Harley was always near him and the two spent a lot of time together (because of this I did try to bond them again but it didn’t work). Because of this, I’ve been considering a second boar.

Harley is a great Guinea pig but he can also be aggressive at times. He really hates being handled which I’ve been working on with him but I don’t think it will ever be something he likes or will tolerate frequently. I don’t want to neuter him to put him with my sows because I worry he’d injure himself or tear his stitches open struggling not to be picked up. I have picked him up with fleece beds but even once he’s out of the cage he’s not better so I worry I would either be unable to properly do health checks and post-operation care or he’d hurt himself.

Harley’s a really happy boar and really sweet though; he loves getting pets and popcorns all the time. I think he’d do well with a friend.

I don’t know if I should be looking for a mellow older boar or a pup. I’ve done very few bondings with adult boars and pups, but I’ve heard that while it often works many pairs will fall out when the pup becomes an adult. None of the rescues near me do bonding with another boar before adoption, and I don’t want to adopt a second adult boar to end up with two solo boars again. I don’t know if a spayed female and intact boar would work, but there aren’t any spayed females near me either.

Any advice or opinions on which option would work best for a somewhat aggressive boar like Harley?
 
I have a female, Millie, that has a similar personality to Harley. Friendly, laid-back, but she gets whiney and fussy when handled. Not a lap pig. I tried getting a friend for her. They lived side by side for a while. Millie fussed and whined, wanting nothing to do with her neighbor, Ruby Sue.

Then Ruby Sue started digging and pulling bedding through the partition. I ended up building another cage and rearranging my room to accommodate 2 single pigs with adequate cage sizes. Some pigs just do not want a buddy.
 
I agree. I don’t have a huge amount of experience, but the last “bonded” pair I had got into a rolling brawl leaving tufts of fur and blood in their wake. Up went the divider.

I know the theory is they are social animals, but a lot of observations are based on behavior in the wild. Cage life is different and I think there’s an added level of stress that set some pigs off.
 
Thanks for all of the advice. I’ve definitely decided to keep Harley solo. Harley has since become more friendly with my sows but they’ve been neighbours long enough now that I don’t think they’ve been socializing more just because the sows are in heat.
 

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