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Behavior Solo Pig doesn't want friends?

agirlwithink

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We adopted our piggie Thoreau in early December, from OCCH, and they told us they were adopting him as a solo pig because he didn't like others in his personal space.

The received him from a hoarding scenario where he had had his ears ripped off to nubs from other pigs. They tried to bond him to two different young boars, the one was quite young and they never really got along for a few weeks, and then Thoreau nipped him and injured the young boars foot so they separated them and adopted him out separately.
I've always heard pigs HAD to be kept together, but he doesn't seem to have any interest. He ignores his grid mates, injured his attempted cage mate and has been solo ever since.

He is a lot less active than my other 4 boars, a little stand off-ish and is definitely the most quiet of my other four.

I don't really know what to do because I've always been told pigs needed friends of their own species but he obviously has NO interest, and even gets aggressive where other pigs are concerned...

Any ideas?
 

Inle_Rabbit

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If he can share a grid wall with the others he will be fine. I have one boar I can't get to get along with anyone but he will cuddle the boars on the other side of his grid wall when they are laying there.

If you want to though getting him neutered and trying a female or a spayed female or going to a rescue for lots of dates is another option. For me, though, we are at guinea pig capacity so these are not options.
 

agirlwithink

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Do you think he'd react different to a female? I'd hate to risk surgery if it still wouldn't work out :[
 

pinky

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Solo pigs can live a happy life as long as you give them plenty of attention. Most guinea pigs like companionship but there are loners that prefer to live alone. I've had a few loners and one would have killed any guinea pig she could get paws on. Once I realized how aggressive she was, I felt it wasn't worth risking the life of another. That being said, she was the most "bonded to humans" guinea pig I've ever owned. She absolutely loved us and we gave her tons of attention. It sounds like your guy has been through an awful lot already. If he seems happy and you dote on him, I don't think I'd really push to house him with another.
 

agirlwithink

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Thanks @pinky !
I had always heard the people saying GUINEAS NEED FRIENDS OR YOU'RE A MONSTER point of view.
He's suchhhh a sweetheart though and the last thing I want to do is give him an even harder life.
 

emilym

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My boar didn't get along with other males in his previous home (he even broke into the neighboring cage and got into a nasty fight with the nearby boars). His previous owner felt he would do best as a single pig. She also described him as extremely anxious (he couldn't handle loud noises, would freak out if anything in his cage was moved, would get upset when people walked past his cage, etc.).

I live by a rescue that spays/neuters all their pigs so I had access to a vet highly experienced with this procedure. I introduced him to my two girls (several weeks after the neuter) and it was a perfect fit. He gets along with them really well and even helps keep the peace between the girls. Also since coming here I haven't seen any of the anxious behavior his previous owner described. I can't promise you'd have the same results but I think it's worth researching.
 

pinky

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Thanks @pinky !
I had always heard the people saying GUINEAS NEED FRIENDS OR YOU'RE A MONSTER point of view.
He's suchhhh a sweetheart though and the last thing I want to do is give him an even harder life.

The guinea pig in my avatar (Pikachu) was my loner and my very favorite of any guinea pig I ever had. She wasn't lonely or unhappy. Just the opposite. We had her cage in a spot with a good view of the kitchen and fridge. As soon as the fridge door would open, she'd be standing there, waiting for a snack. She also ate her dinner while we ate ours. She'd be in full view of us and would visit with us as she ate. She'd always come running as soon as she caught sight of us. I'd bring her out when I had floor time with the others but I'd have to keep her a safe distance from them because she'd charge. I wondered if she thought she was human instead of a guinea pig. We had her cage butted up to the others for awhile, but she ignored them. She was the only guinea pig I ever had that would pick up her plastic bowl and carry it around the cage.
 

Artista

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Thanks @pinky !
I had always heard the people saying GUINEAS NEED FRIENDS OR YOU'RE A MONSTER point of view.
He's suchhhh a sweetheart though and the last thing I want to do is give him an even harder life.

Yeah, I kinda got that when I first joined and said I have one pig and don't plan on getting another. My reason is the cost that can be incurred. I live alone and am on disability, so I have to be cognizant of where the money goes. Within the first 6 months of having my now 1.5 year old girl, I had over $1,000 in vet bills. She was hooting a lot like an owl so a cardiologist wound up checking her out and thankfully it was an insignificant heart murmur. Around the same time she got a URI. The antibiotics caused her to stop eating and so I boarded her with the vet for 10 days since I wasn't successful in feeding her every 2 hours myself. I'm home a lot and her cage is right next to the couch where I even sleep, so we are interacting all the time.

While it is true they do better in numbers, I know my girl is better off with me than had I left her on clearance at Petco for I think we can guess where my 6 mo old girl was headed had I not fallen in love with her. Now I don't go in pet stores that have animals, but a year ago I didn't know what was behind pet store puppy mill style and if there is another pig, it would definitely be from a rescue.
 

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