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Unplanned adoption, seeking input on my check list

.This guy is very wiggly and does not like his feet handled.

You may already be aware of these, but just some tips based on my own experience. I do the entire routine without help. And, I don't try to distract with treats.....they come after the procedure.

I use scissors (I think they are termed kitten/small animal scissors) because they encircle the nail and won’t split it as human nail clippers can.

https://www.amazon.com/s?k=small+ani...f=nb_sb_noss_1

I wrap the piggy burrito style so that I can control him by myself. Once he is wrapped up tightly, I first do the back nails as they are the most difficult. My Sparky (who is the ultimate mellow fellow) will kick and thrash the entire time and I like to get the most difficult part done first. I’m right handed, so he goes in my lap with my left forearm controlling him against my body and that hand holding his foot/toes as I work.

The back nails are cut with the scissors, and then the sharp edges smoothed with a Dremel. I then will often put quick-drying nail polish on them to further smooth them to protect my very sensitive skin. After this is done, I then expose his head and front paws and simply clip his front nails. I only occasionally use the Dremel on them. I should mention that I always use a latex/vinyl glove on the hand holding the nails, especially when it is the front nails and your cavy is tempted to bite……..or not.

NOW HERE IS THE REAL SECRET TO PAINLESS AND BLOODLESS NAIL CUTTING. Encircle the nail with the scissors and clamp down only half way until you put a little pressure on the nail. If you are too close to the quick, the piggy will wince and cry out. In that case, readjust your position and try again. If he doesn’t react, then you’re good to go and continue to cut the nail. This technique works especially well on black nails.

Should you make a mistake and cut a nail too short, try stopping the bleeding with cornstarch, flour, or a little sustained pressure. I will also use Vet Tissue Adhesive that dries in a few seconds. The one I recommend was developed for cats after a declawing procedure.

https://www.amazon.com/Liquivet-Tis...vet+adhesive&qid=1556321718&s= gateway&sr=8-9

Be VERY cautious with this…….it literally bonds in seconds and invariably will get on surfaces that you don’t want to bond. Use it gently and sparingly and be sure to wipe the tip before putting the cap on again and store it upright to avoid it clogging the spout. We also use this product for small cuts and scrapes on our skin, especially those nasty cracks one gets on the fingers in winter.

I have a grooming session about once a month when I clip nails, clean the genital area, clean ears and do a thorough brushing. It's not fun for either of us, but I have become pretty adept at it and it doesn't take an inordinate amount of time. Be sure to allow some post-procedure cuddle time.....a baby carrot or two seems to be the perfect peace offering and all is forgiven.
 
Thanks for the good tips to nail trimming! I do it myself also. We kind of fumble some days if she’s more wiggly. The burrito wrap is a good idea.

I have used the kitten scissors but I have trouble judging how much I’m taking off so I also use a human nail clipper. Depending on how I have to hold her sometimes it’s easier to clip the nail sideways rather than trying to get the curved part with the clipper. Whatever works!
 
@spy9doc Nail clipping was very successful. We actually had a two person operation and he did really well. His nails were very dirty and the trick of gently squeezing the clippers and checking reaction really helped us not clip a quick.
 
UPDATE - My daughter informed me that our new furry potato is officially Nutter Butter. I prefer to call him Fuzzy Butter. He is doing well overall and has started wheeking at supper time and when he can hear a bag rustle that generally means, hay, pellets, or Oxbow wafer. He is starting to figure out the refrigerator door sound also. New photo of Nutter Butter because he is a handsome little boy.
Unplanned adoption, seeking input on my check list
 
Oh my, he is a cutie! I do like the name Nutter Butter since he is the same color as the cookies! Amazing that these little ones are so resilient. It sounds like he’s a smarty figuring out his new home and all the sounds. Thanks for the update!
 
Thank you for the update! So glad to hear he officially has a name and is doing well! Time and love will do so much for these little guys........
 
@Guinea Pig Papa I was really concerned he would always be a shy, skitish guy because he has been through so much. I am very happy to hear him wheeking and he is starting to be much more vocal with more whistles and wheeks. He very much enjoys veggies and is a very efficient hay eater. He is not one to leave scraps.
 
Further updates on Nutter Butter. His pigloo was replaced with a fleece forest and he will have a tunnel soon. The pigloo was taking up a lot of space and he seems very content to snuggle and hide in the fleece forest. He wheeks for supper, more so when I am not around because he doesn't get near as spoiled by the rest of the family apparently. He has made great improvements and is very comfortable with lap time and we are working to get him more floor time and space. I'll be posting more pictures of him as we noticed he has a very neat ridge of fur running down his back.
 
I've been following Nutter Butter's wonderful rescue story for a while now! It's great to hear :) I can't wait to see more pictures...I thought he was an Abby from the first one, but maybe he's actually a Ridgeback? This link has a good picture and description of a Ridgeback piggy third from the top: https://www.somerzby.com.au/blog/ultimate-guinea-pig-breed-list/
 
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Thanks for the good news about Nutter Butter! I’m so glad things are going well.
 
Just a little update. Nutter Butter is enjoying being spoiled and has learned wheeking is a good thing and generally results in supper, breakfast, fresh hay, or pellets arriving. There were some setbacks on his new home that should be corrected soon so he can get back to zooming. He much prefers a fleece forest to a pigloo now.

We are really not sure of his age. At least a year, could be as old as three. So we are going to take good care of him and make sure he has a great life from here on out. My daughter was contacted by the now ex-boyfriend (the one that joked about roasting Nutter Butter) about getting Nutter Butter back. Worry not, Nutter Butter is in his forever home and I doubt that question will ever be asked again.
 
Just a little update. Nutter Butter is enjoying being spoiled and has learned wheeking is a good thing and generally results in supper, breakfast, fresh hay, or pellets arriving. There were some setbacks on his new home that should be corrected soon so he can get back to zooming. He much prefers a fleece forest to a pigloo now.

We are really not sure of his age. At least a year, could be as old as three. So we are going to take good care of him and make sure he has a great life from here on out. My daughter was contacted by the now ex-boyfriend (the one that joked about roasting Nutter Butter) about getting Nutter Butter back. Worry not, Nutter Butter is in his forever home and I doubt that question will ever be asked again.


Thanks for the update! Glad to hear Nutter Butter has a good home that will keep him, spoil him and love him for who he is. Couldn't have happened to a cuter pig!
 
So great to hear!!! He's gone from pauper to prince :D
 
Thanks for the update on Nutter Butter! Such good news!
 
It has been awhile and I wanted to give an update on Nutter Butter. He is enjoying his new home which is a 2x3 C&C, which I know is the bare minimum, but it is a huge improvement from the tiny thing he has been in for most of his life. He has a small fleece forest in the corner and I put his pigloo in, but will be swapping that out for a fleece hide that is a bit less bulky. I am not a fan of the pigloo, but he needed more cover than just the fleece forest and I have not had a chance to make him another one yet. For now I have draped a towel over his 'kitchen' area where his hay, pellet dish, and water bottle are so that he has cover when eating and drinking. He is very particular about having cover when eating and drinking. The extra space has done him well and he makes laps, moves his furniture around, and is generally pretty active when we are around. On a side note, brown was a bad choice for a fleece color. Poop patrol is a bit challenging. Lesson learned there.

Unplanned adoption, seeking input on my check list
 
Thank you for the update! So glad he's doing well and enjoying his space. I'm not wild about pigloos either. They don't have much ventilation and take up a lot of room. My piggy's favorites are the stacking organizer bins from Dollar Tree. I turn them over and she likes to get in and pull them around with her shoulders. Regarding the fleece, another bad choice is anything with a polka dot pattern. I made that mistake with some floral fleece that has a white background and dots. Everything looks like it needs cleaning!
 
As a suggestion, why not consider getting his cage off the floor? Cavies seem far more comfortable when their cage is elevated and we don't loom so large over them. My cage sits alongside my desk in my small home office on a custom grid stand where the loft is at about eye level when I'm sitting at my desk. My boys have always seemed far more comfortable with that arrangement.

I searched for quite some time for a table suitable for my cage and just never found the right size for the space. I finally did one of these "duh....slap forehead" moves and realized that making a custom wire cube stand was the solution. Sometimes people (bpatters, etc.) use a combination of the Ikea Lack tables as a base for their cage:

https://www.ikea.com/us/en/search/products/?q=lack table

If I haven't already done so, I think you know that I'm happy to share pics of my cage and cage stand in progress.
 
I should have mentioned this is a temporary location for the holiday season. He currently resides in our office area and will be moving to the living room after Christmas is put away. I am going to get him elevated on either a cube stand or other stand that I can move on wheels. @spy9doc I followed your advice and the zip tie/glue combo makes a bullet proof cage. @ItsaZoo I will have to check out the Dollar Tree bins.

He is so much more vocal and active than when he first came to us. He is doing 'hot laps' around his cage and popcorning. It's pretty incredible to see the changes.
 
You know that I wouldn't steer you wrong! ;) Love to see his permanent abode when you get it set up.

Another suggestion for a hidey or tunnel: Bend a wire grid into a U-shape and cover it with an extra large (jumbo) stretchy book cover. My cavies have always loved them and frequently rearrange the cage to suit. Also, you can change the cover to match cage decor.


Unplanned adoption, seeking input on my check list Unplanned adoption, seeking input on my check list Unplanned adoption, seeking input on my check list

I should mention that you stand on the grid and bend it up on the sides. It is easier if you put the grid in a low temp (~250 deg.) oven for about a half hour to make the task easier. Do use heavy gloves to handle the hot grid!
 
We celebrated the season with Nutter Butter slow rolling through Bethlehem. Pictures will be added for context after I get them from my daughter.

I am so happy to have Butter, but I had a bit of weepy moment when I called him Bella. I miss my girl and this is the first Christmas since losing her.
 
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