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New owner, lots of questions


Well-known Member
Cavy Slave
Feb 25, 2007
Hi, I'm a new piggy owner. I'm about 90% sure it's a boy -- i'm having a bit of a problem figuring it out from the sexing pictures.
But he is sad, he is just hiding in his little towel tent, and not eating, and not drinking and really not moving. :sad:
He didn't even want any orange or carrot, or hay for that matter.
So, I guess I'm wondering if I should be worried, or is he just adjusting?
He doesn't bite me when I pick him up though, but I'm guessing that it doesn't mean anything.
I'll appreciate any advice I can get.
Thank You.
I don't have a guinea pig yet, but I have heard they stay put for awhile. They are just adjusting, I think. I would put his food/water close to where he is just in case though. Guinea pigs don't bite out of fear, they rarely bite at all.

edit: What kind of cage do you have? Did you buy him from a pet store, if so he could be sick? Also, once you are 100% sure of the sex, you should get him/her a same sex friend.
He has a 20 x 40 inc. cage. And yes, he is a petstore piggy :sad: I will take him to see a vet on tuesday.
Like FuzzButtLover, I don't have any pigs either, but in addition to adjusting, he might be lonely. You only have one now, correct? After going to the vet and verifying the sex of the piggy, you should adopt a piggy (same sex of course), now that you know. Getting another one might cheer him up. Look around here for how to introduce them.

If you hopefully get him a friend, you should consider getting a bigger cage...
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I still think he should be eating... and he hasn't for almost 24 hrs
I still think he should be eating... and he hasn't for almost 24 hrs
I read somewhere here that some piggies will starve themselves because of a change of routine. Do you have any pellets out? I also heard oranges could be bad for them if fed too often.

I am not much of an expert, everything I am saying is based on words, not experience. I hope your piggy starts eating soon, maybe putting food in his place he hides would encourage him to eat. ;)
At this point, he's just adjusting to his new surroundings. He's eating, just when he feels safe. You should be monitoring his weight. Being a pet store pig, he has a high chance of being sick, which can make him not want to eat. If he's losing weight, than he needs to be heandfed.
I guess when I said that he is a store pig I should have clarified. It's a small independent store that does rescues, he is not from one of those huge chains that mistreat pets. He has everything he needs: water, nice pellets and lots of hay. Actually, I've put some hay and his pellets at the opening of his tent, and he is munching on the hay now. I've ordered scales for him (from the store I got him at), they should arrive on tuesday. Also, I'm waiting for his new fleece bedding to get here, I think he will like that better than shavings. Oh, and as to getting another piggy....defenatelly, but now right away.
i think he will adjust fine maybe a bigger cage and a friend. talk to him all the time so he gets to know your voice. then soon he will be comming out when he hears you. he should be fine thats normal.
If this place actually does rescues, they should have told you whether your new pig was a boy or a girl. The fact that they didn't leads me to believe this is just a run of the mill petstore.

How old is the pig? If it is a little baby, it may have just been taken from it's mother and siblings and will be understandably frightened. If it is sitting all hunched up or facing a corner, it could be sick, but let's just hope its just scared.

Be sure your vet has knowledge of small exotics. Otherwise, he/she may not be able to give you good medical advice for your new piggy.
The store was sure it was a boy :sarcastic . But I looked at the sexing pictures on this forum and got a little uncertain. He is eating now, and yes the vet that I'm taking him too specializes in exotics.
Oh, the piggy is 2 or 3 months old, they weren't sure.
He can be adjusting, sick, lonely, or a combination. If he doesn't get better in a few days, take him to the vet. If he is well, get a friend for him.
I guess I'll be repeating a lot of what you've already been told. But here are some things to watch for and do:

1. Invest in a larger more suitable cage as soon as you are able. There is a ton of information at Guinea Pig Cages, Your Cavy At Home as well as around here for costs and ideas/alternatives. But your piggy does need more room.

2. I think taking your piggy to the vet is a very smart choice on your part - good for you! Keep us updated with that.

3. Give your piggy time to adjust the new smells and sounds of his surroundings. It is very intimidating for them at first. Continue to be gentle and talk softly and he/she will start to emerge from their shell.

4. Definitely take a look at the Nutrition Charts at Guinea Lynx :: A Medical and Care Guide for Your Guinea Pig and around here [in the Diet/Nutrition section] for more information on the variety of veggies and portions and what. THAT is so very important.

5. Make sure you're feeding quality pellets and hay. Again TONS of information to be had in the Diet/Nutrition section!

6. Definitely keep an eye on food and water intake. There are other things to watch for like runny nose, crusty eyes, lethargy in general of course - but you are going to the vet tomorrow, right?

Tell yourself to be as patient as you can be. I know it is SO hard when you just want to love and hug them and want them to love you as much as you love them. But they can be finicky little critters!

Welcome to the forums and best of luck.
I'm going to add on to the cage as soon as I can, the one that he is in now is only 1.5 square feet smaller than you guys say it should be.

I've done lots of research and he is getting fed properly. He has been eating (a lot) and he has been comming out and chirping a little.

He is going to the vet tomorrow, just for a general check up. None of the symptoms for any diseases posted (on this forum or anywhere else) are there.

I got him to do some floor time today for almost an hour, and he was very active.

I did my research before I got him, and I was worried because I knew I was doing all the right things, but he still didn't look happy. I'm sure he'll be just great now.

Thank you for all your help
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