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Quarantine Keeping them happy while separated

6GPS7

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2 of my 6 piggies are separated for quarantine for URIs. They are in separate rooms from each other and my other pigs. My male seems pretty bored and unhappy without a friend. He's biting cage bars and just generally sits around not doing much. I guess this could also be because he is sick, but he is getting towards the end of his antibiotics treatment, so I'd think he should be feeling better now. Is there anything I can do for him to help his loneliness while in quarantine?
 

bpatters

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Why are you quarantining them for URIs? They were all likely thoroughly exposed before the first one came down with symptoms, and the stress of being separated may be as bad for the sick ones as the continued exposure would be for the ones who aren't sick.
 

6GPS7

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Because everything I've ever read about URIs has said that you should quarantine them for URIs. Also, that what my vet told me to do. They can't be in the same cage anyway, because it's a male/female pair that I rescued, and she is pregnant. My situation is somewhat complicated, but if you're saying they don't need to be quarantined for URIs, then I can at least put them in the same room as my other ones.
 

6GPS7

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And no, I did not breed them, just to be totally clear. She came to me already pregnant because of their ignorant first owners.
 

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They should be in a separate room from any healthy piggies, I think [MENTION=13820]bpatters[/MENTION] was asking why they were separated from each other. URIs are contagious, and you don't want 6 sick pigs.

Just try to give him a lot of attention and love. Make sure to wash your hands in between handling sick and healthy pigs.
 

6GPS7

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Again, my vets office told me to separate my sick pigs from ALL other pigs, not just to move my 2 cage mates out together. I was just following what they told me to do.

But since they both have the same infection, are you saying it's ok to have them in the same room? Honestly, I would love this, because they both seem really sad. Does the fact that she's pregnant change that? I mean, I know I can't have them in the same cage w no divider (obviously) and that her cage needs to be baby proofed but I think if they could smell and "talk" to each other, they would be so much happier. I'm so worried about them. :-(
 

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I would think that if they're both sick, they can't really pass on anything else to each other. I'm definitely not an expert on this, so don't take my word for it, but I would think you could keep them in the same room as long as the male can't possibly get to the female.
 

6GPS7

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Thank you, pigger123. They both are over a week into antibiotics, so I think I'm going to take the small risk of infecting one another. As bpatter said above, at this point, I think the stress of being separated is more stressful than that small risk. Neither of them are eating well and I've been handfeeding them. I desperately need them to start eating.
 

bpatters

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To each his own. I've never quarantined when one of mine has been sick. Granted, I've never had any really serious illnesses, but I figure by the time one of them has symptoms, the other one has been thoroughly exposed. However, the safer course is to quarantine.
 

6GPS7

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If I put them in a C&C cage with a divider, what size should I make it?
 

6GPS7

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Thanks, bpatters, that's really good to know for the future.
 

pigger123

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A single pig needs at least a 2x3 for long term housing. If it's just for a little while until they get better, you can get away with a 2x2. Your pregnant sow will need more space for when she has her pups. If you plan on keeping any of the babies, make sure to keep that in mind when you decide how big to make your cage.

Also, the boar's cage needs to have a lid. A male can get pretty desperate when there's a female in heat next to him, and they can actually climb over the grids.
 

6GPS7

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So right now, my plan is to leave her in her babyproofed Midwest cage until she has her baby, and I am going to put him in a 2x3 next to her (with a lid), so they can "visit." As far as the pairings for long-term, I don't even know. Right now, in addition to them, I have a bonded female pair, and a bonded male pair. If the baby is a girl, and everyone gets along, I will probably neuter him and let him stay with her, and their baby girl. If it's a boy, I'll probably still neuter him and let him stay with her, and attempt to bond the baby boy with my bonded female pair. The only thing I definitely don't want to do is a trio of boys. But we'll just have to see how it goes.

(By the way, I keep referring to the baby a single because the vet did an x-ray and only saw 1. If she has more than 1 baby, my head might explode with pairing possibilities, LOL. I'm just taking it one step at a time.)

Thanks for all your help. :)
 

pigger123

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If the baby is a boy, you would have to get him neutered as well if you want to keep him with your girls. The recommended minimum age for neutering is 3-4 months old, so he would have to live alone in his own cage for 4 months. That's not really a huge deal, but it's something to keep in mind.

Your plan for if it's a girl sounds pretty good. If it's a boy, I would pair him with the dad and introduce the mother to your female pair. Then you would have 2 male pairs and a female trio. That's just my idea though.
 

6GPS7

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Oh yes, of course you're right, I knew that, just forgot to write it down.

I like your plan a lot! If I did your plan, I wouldn't have to neuter anyone, which would be great. I'm not overly fond of the idea of putting them through surgery, if avoidable. We'll have to just see how it goes and what the baby is!

On the original topic, I got her cage babyproofed and put in his new 2x3 in and reunited them. OMG. They are SO happy! This is the happiest I've seen them both since I separated them! There was lots of wheeking and popcorning and saying hi at cage bars. Best part - they are BOTH eating! My girl has barely touched her food in days, so it is soooooooo good to see her eat! I am over the moon! Here's a couple pics. He's on the purple fleece and she's on the flowers.

Here she is eating!
20140708_205059.jpg

Saying hi!
20140708_205022.jpg
 

6GPS7

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Ok, sorry I do have one more question. I made the lid so it "hinges" lengthwise on the sides and opens (see where the long, unclipped zip ties are? Those are my hinges.), so I can get to it for cleaning/feeding/giving meds, etc. It's hard to tell in the picture, but I clipped it closed where the grids meet in the middle, to prevent him from getting out. (You can kind of see it on the right side of the picture, in the middle.) There's only one clip in the picture, but I added 2 more. They are strong clips, like a strong chip clip. Is this enough? I think he would have to be pretty enterprising to get out of this, but I don't want to make the mistake of underestimating a determined boar. I absolutely do not want her to get pregnant again. Should I add more clips or maybe use ties? Or is 3 enough?
 

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Good for them! I'm so glad they're together again and happy. :)

That lid should hold fine. If you're worried about it, you can always add more clips, but I don't think it would be a problem.
 
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