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Aggression Please help! One of my guinea pigs started freaking out and bullying another!

agnes

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Cavy Gazer
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Joined
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Hello! I recently moved my two pigs, Stella & Agnes together, they are both female and newcomers to living with another piggy! I took all of the precautions and respected the introduction process and they were getting along really well!! This afternoon, everything was going fine and then I took a nasty fall in my bedroom where my pigs live and ever since Stella has been freaking out. She began bullying Agnes and started baring her teeth, teeth chattering, rumble strutting, and mounting her nonstop. It got to the point where I had to separate them because I was so worried. I know I’m not supposed to separate them unless there is biting but I felt like it was leading to that point and I wanted to deescalate the situation. I tried putting Agnes back in their home 3 times and it would all just start back up again. Agnes is currently sitting with me on my bed and I am at a loss. Should I just give Stella time to calm down? Is it from the loudness of my fall?? I’m just really confused and at a loss. Stella won’t stop squealing and running around like a crazy woman!!!

Thanks so much for your help!
 

Smileandnod

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Cavy Slave
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Sorry to hear things aren't going as well as planned...but welcome to the forum!

To understand a little bit more about what is happening please give a bit more info before I can make suggestions..

How old approximately are the girls?

How big is the cage?

What kind of cage (C&C or other?) Is it single story or have a loft?

How many hay piles, food bowls, water bowls in the cage?

What kind of bed/hideys do you have in cage and how many?
 

Smileandnod

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Cavy Slave
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Also,

How long have they been together in same cage?
 

agnes

Member
Cavy Gazer
Joined
Apr 27, 2020
Posts
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Joined
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The girls are 1 & 2, I am a relatively new owner and started off with just Agnes but then learned that they need friends. I have a 10.5 square meter cage that has a roof and a permanent playpen extension (the 10.5 is counting the extension) and it is one story with a ramp down to the play pen. I have double of everything so each of them has their own food source, water source, hay pile etc., and I have 2 pigloos, a canopy type thing that Agnes loves to sit and hide under, and a bed.

I actually just ordered the stuff to start making a C&C cage because they look like they could be better for cleaning and more roomy for my gals. I moved them in about 2 days ago.

Thanks so much for the reply and willingness to help.
 

Smileandnod

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Cavy Slave
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Great job [MENTION=45565]agnes[/MENTION] for having two of everything, that helps cut down of squabbles.

I am thinking that you might have meant 10.5 sq ft rather than meters...because if it was meters, that would be a huge 113.021 Sq. feet cage. ??

Guinea pigs go through phases of asserting dominance with rumble strutting, mounting and basically putting on a big show. This is normal. Adult females, such as your girls, do this periodically during their heat cycles as well. If no blood is drawn, let them sort it out...but I say that with the assurance that there is adequate room for each to get away from each other as needed. If they are always in sight of each other due to space constraints, you will almost definitely have a fight eventually.

I have found that some guinea pigs need more room than others to get along. I found with my girls making a C&C cage that was 3 grids wide (approximately 3.5 ft wide) really helped so there was a lot of room for passing each other when one was in a bad mood or prone to nipping another.

I try to stay away from igloos that have only one entrance/exit to prevent any guinea pig getting trapped, especially if you have one who is is squabble mode right now. It also helps that if you have any ramps, try to have two as well so that they can get away from another easily and if you have a loft in the future build it so they have the space to move past each other (I suggest avoiding 1 grid wide lofts).

C&C cages are wonderful because you can build them in any configuration or size you need or want. I currently have a 6x6 with a 2x10 L shaped loft... But I have more than 2, so they need the space. Again, when they have space and room to get away or out of sight, there are very few squabbles unless it's over a choice piece of pepper! It also is a lot of fun to watch their playful side emerge when they have the room to run.

In the meantime, I suggest you make an adaptation of a fleece forest by putting up some fleece strips (or other strips of material until you get fleece) hanging from the cage roof and down towards the floor, kind of like a curtain. This will allow the pigs to get out of sight from each other, even if it's briefly.

I would also suggest getting a cheap kitchen scale to weigh them regularly to make sure everyone is getting their fair share of food and it alerts you to illnesses if one should start dropping weight.

Welcome to guinea pig ownership! There is a lot of great information on this forum...read through it and look at some of the gallery photos for cage ideas! Good luck!
 
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