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My rescue Guinea Pigs are fighting :(

(15 Posts)
WorzselMummage Mon 20-Jun-11 17:31:31

We've had The Dr and Rory for a week. They are supposedly 18 month old littermates. They came from a MNer who's SIL had neglected them and was going to let them go on to cannock chase, to be fox food sad

They are great, funny and entertaining and they have been fully pampered since arrive and now have a big run in the garden and everything a guinea pigs heart could desire. The kids love them and they are really coming out of their shells this last few days, venturing out and about and having cuddles.

Since they have arrived though i've been noticing little squabbles and didnt appear to like each other very much and now they have just had a fight, injuring the littluns leg.. just a stratch, nothing that warrants a vets visit but obviously this situation is escalating so I have separated them.

The little one is very nervy and has a lot of scars on his ears and doesn't like his head being touched. He already had a toe missing when he arrived sad

What do I do from here ? I dont have the space for 2 cages in the house, obviously one can't live on it's own in the hutch in the garden all though the winter though the summer would be ok. I hate to think of such obviously social animals being on their own but they obviously are not friends.

I am at a loss.

Meglet Mon 20-Jun-11 17:35:14

Are they both boys? I had 2 boys once and had to separate them for a few months. They were ok after that, maybe it's their 'teenage' years that makes them kick off.

I wonder if getting them neutered would work?

WorzselMummage Mon 20-Jun-11 17:38:24

Yeah 2 boys but one is smaller by quite a lot. I'm not sure neutering would help.. worth looking in to though.

WorzselMummage Mon 20-Jun-11 18:53:16

Bump for the evening crowd.

Meglet Mon 20-Jun-11 20:27:12

Having thought about it I had 2 old females that bullied a young female. I just had to keep them separate then introduce them gradually when I could supervise.

Food sometimes helps. Pile it high and sit there while they eat it, hopefully the distraction of the food will stop them fighting. It might take time for them to be happy with each other though.

onclefestere Tue 21-Jun-11 11:15:11

could you get them neutered Worszel - oh dear sad
oh sorry, I see meglet has suggested this. It worked for my father and son combo - the Dad used to bully the son lots. Keep us posted.

ZZZenAgain Tue 21-Jun-11 11:22:20

like meglet says, I put a grid up to separate the two (fighting females) so they could see each other but not get at each other. I was despairing tbh but they did start to get on after a bit. I think it took about 10 days of introducing them to each other - like have them both in the run at the same time (with dandelion leavesand tid bits) or put some things in there for them to discover - they like tunnels so if they are small enough those crisp cyclinders are fun for them. supervise it and be ready to pluck them out if there is trouble. Mine are fine together now, occasionally have a squabble and rumble at each other but no fighting at all.

hope they get used to each other. Maybe they are sorting out who is the boss. Are they raising heads at each other? The one whose head is highest when they do that is the boss. I also had one of them jumping on the other's back and ripping out fur with her teet h - and she was the smaller one. So I really had to separate. I put a grid mesh barrier in the hutch to make it two rooms. They could see it each other that way

SquigglePigs Tue 21-Jun-11 17:54:45

Young boys will compete for food, so if they were neglected before you got them, this could be a trigger (I've got two rescue pigs and although they didn't progress beyond growling at each other, it was a similar thing). My recommendations at this point would be to increase the amount of fresh food you give them (and do so at least twice a day). Even if you feel like you are over-feeding them a little, this won't hurt in the short term (obviously will if you carry on doing so for months but a few weeks will be fine).

The other thing would be to give them separate bedrooms. When my two "argue" one ends up sleeping in their play tube (although now they're more relaxed they often sleep out in the middle of their cage anyway!).

Also make sure you get them out lots and give them time away from each other, e.g. one person sat on one sofa with one, someone else on another sofa with the other. Or put one in the run for a little while on it's own, and swap them over.

If they're still fighting in a couple of weeks after all this (or the little one ends up getting hurt) then it may be that separating them is the only option, but hopefully not. They are very social animals but the boys can be a little grumpy!

BabyDubsEverywhere Tue 21-Jun-11 18:49:13

Oh Worzsel Im so sorry.

(For those that dont know I am the one who took the piggies from cow bag of 'friend')

I have had to start introducing my little two to my big girls, Im having them out in a big neutral run and watching them alot at the minute, easier for me as i have the spare run.

The best way to introduce/reintroduce all animals that i have found is to have them seperated by mesh and no need to compete with each other. So, a dry food bowl each, water bottle each, pile the fresh food into a couple of seperate areas each time, a hidey hole each. These things neednt be expensive, flower pots to hide in, chubes, cardboard box. Use saucers for food perhaps? I have spare water bottles if you need some? Pile hay into at least two corners of the cage if possible.

If you only have the cage they came in and a run, you could take the mesh part of the cage and put that on the grass next to the run, put a brick on top to stop it moving, i used to do this with mine until i bought a run. It works fine if looks a little odd grin You may find that the cage re arrangement coupled with seperate time in runs where they can see each other may be enough to make them both feel secure again and not in competition.

Feel so bad for these poor guys, sad

WorzselMummage Tue 21-Jun-11 19:18:58

It's not your fault lol, you only had them for a couple of hours, it's not like you had them for ages.

I suspect they have never got on and the little'un Rory, has been bullied since they were first put together. I don't suppose you friend even noticed.. They we in a cupboard, how could she sad. Rory is very scarred; his ears are shredded and claws/ toes missing and he hates being touched on his head. It makes me sad to think he's been bullied for so long sad

I put them together earlier on and within an hour they were at it again so they've been split up for good. The sad thing is is that one of them is now in the garden and one in the house and they are wheeking for each other and while they were getting much braver and sociable now they've reverted to hiding in their flowerpot houses sad

There is a gp rescuer locally so I thought I'd give her a ring tomorrow for some advice..

I hadn't planneed to have 2 whole gp set ups and really don't have the room anyway. I don't know what to do.

WorzselMummage Tue 21-Jun-11 19:21:19

I had thought that maybe I'd ask the rescuer if she could find them 2 more to nod them with separately in pairs but that's no piggies to 4 piggies on less than 2 weeks shock

ZZZenAgain Tue 21-Jun-11 20:16:43

they were in a cupboard? Shut up in a closed cupboard?

WorzselMummage Tue 21-Jun-11 20:23:44

Apparently so sad

They are the loveliest little things too.

Some people are vile.

BabyDubsEverywhere Tue 21-Jun-11 21:09:59

Yes they had been put in a cupboard because she wouldnt clean them out and smelled. My sister went round there a couple of weeks ago and told me that the piggies werent there, i emailed said crap 'friend' to see where they had gone (as she had asked me a week or so before if you could release them into the wild, like rabbits - NO you twat you cant release ANY 'pet' into the wild!!!) She said they were still there, in the cupboard. A couple of days later she posted on FB about releasing them as she cant take it anymore, and its her 3 year olds fault for not bothering with them! wtf! I could happliy bitch slap her to death tbh....but is my sis extended family so stuck with the cow! anyway...

Wurzsel, could you perhaps see if the rescurer could trade? 1 in 1 out kind of thing? A neutered female might be a good option if they have one? Most rescue centres for all animals will help with introducing a new pet to make sure they get on okay. Sorry this has turned into a bit of a hassle for you.

Poor Rory must have been suffering for so long, feel so bad for him. Wish i had the room for one more but i honestly dont have anywhere else i could put a home for him. And my four girls would populate the planet if they found a boy! grin

BabyDubsEverywhere Tue 21-Jun-11 21:11:11

oh, the cupboard, they are in an appartment, so its the cupboard you woul usually chuck your shoes and coats in. no window.... god Im going to cry. sorry!

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