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trying to bond male group

  • Thread starter attackofthebear
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attackofthebear

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I have been trying to bond a group of 7 males and everytime someone gets hurt. Actually the same piggy gets hurt by the same pig. The cage is huge and should be plenty big enough but they aways fight after a couple of hours or days after I put them together. Should I get him fixed and put him with the girls which was what I was going to do until one of our other pigs had stones that had to be taken out but didnt make it, or should I just seperate them again. It would be nice to have them together but it doesnt want to work. Are there some pigs out there that just have to be alone? What can I do that will help make it work? Thanks for any advice.
 

this_lil_piggy

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There are some pigs that will just always clash or will never get along--just like people. But, I am a little confused and have a few questions about your introductions.

How old are the 2 pigs that seem to have the trouble with each other?
Older pigs tend to be dominant, and "teenage" pigs going through puberty like to push their luck --they think they are all growed up now and want to try to be boss.

What do you mean by 'hurt'?
It is normal for gp's to chatter, mount, argue, and even for some fur to fly. As long as no blood is being shed, you shouldn't really intervene (introducing and reintroducing over and over only stresses them out and makes the process start from scratch--the pigs don't remember 'oh yeah that is that guy that was here yesterday')

Where are you introducing them?
Introductions should never ever be done in the cage where there are already established scents. You need to place the pigs in as large of a neutral area as you can provide, away from the cage. Refrain from adding any hiding places in the introduction area (so no pigs get hemmed up with a ticked off pig) until things have settled down. It is a good idea to add piles of hay, and veggies in the introduction area so that they can "discuss things over dinner"..it provides a bit of a distraction. Monitor the pigs, and keep a dustpan or towel nearby to break up any true fights, but as hard as it is, try to refrain from stopping introductions and pulling pigs unless there actually is a rolling drawing blood fight at hand. It is hard to watch sometimes and is nerve racking, but "argueing", bullying, and even nipping is a normal part of the process.

How big is the cage you are adding the 7 pigs to?
Boars are territorial and dominant. If you don't have adequate space for them, they are going to hate each other.
Cage Size Standards
https://www.guineapigcages.com/
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13 sq ft more is better 2x6 grids 27" x 84"​
You should add 2-4 sq ft for each additional boar, so a minimum size cage for 7 boars would be 19 sq ft--2X12. More would be better, but anything less is probably asking for trouble.

While you are intorducing in neutral territory, do a thourough cage clean. This means clean out bedding, wash the insides, as much of the grids, and all the toys, dishes, and hidey houses with vinegar/water to eliminate any "boar scent". If the two pigs still just do not get along, it might help to put a divider in the cage--place maybe 2-3 pigs in one side, and 4-5 in the other side--make sure the two that do not get along are on opposite sides. Leave the divider in for a week or so, so that the pigs get aquainted, but don't have access to each other. And then retry introductions in a neutral area again in a week or so. (another cage cleaning will be in order before you introduce them back in with no divider).

Here is some more info and links from Guinea Lynx
Be sure to read over Teresa Murphy's page on Social Lifefor her advice on how to improve the odds of a successful match, introductions, and much more. It is a must for anyone planning to add a new pig to the mix. And for proof that boars really can get along with each other, check out all the success stories and tips that Charybdis has collected.
 

attackofthebear

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The cage is atleast a 6x3, if not bigger. The only reason I seperated the pigs that were fighting was because one of them did have a bleeding foot. It happened out on the floor though. One of them is around 11 months and the other one is 7 months. I think the 7 months old is going through puberty and the other one is old enough to know if he can be dominant or not. I know fixing a pig is only supposed to be done if he/she will be put with the opposite sex and that would be the reason. The other 5 pigs are doing ok and seemed to have settled down.
 

Jennicat

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In my personal experience, attackofthebear, that's not going to be enough room. I have six pigs living together (2 fixed females, and 4 males), but they live in a 3x8, and even then I consider it a bit small, and there are squabbles.
 

attackofthebear

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How can I make the cage bigger? I actually went to look at the hurt piggy and while I was there counted the size and it was a 3x7 which isnt much difference. I am considering either a bigger cage or fixing him because this isnt the first time it happened. I am going to wait till the hurt piggies foot heals and the other piggy grows out of puberty. Their cage is huge, and since it is the holidays and all that big stuff....also we are rescuing a dog, my family will come to a decision of whether to have him fixed or try the bigger cage, most likely after the holidays. I know the safest way to go is the bigger cage.
 
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Jennicat

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Fixing him won't alter his personality.

3x7 isn't much difference, but it's a.) 4 square feet smaller than the cage I'm using for 6 with some social tension and b.) has an extra pig in it.
 

attackofthebear

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I wouldnt fix him unless I was going to put him in with the girls.

How did you get your cage that big Jennicat?
 

Jennicat

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I had two groups of three pigs, and they each had a 3x4... so I ended up using duct tape to combine the two pieces of coroplsat.
 
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