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teeny tiny baby guineapigs.

(25 Posts)
Shelium Sun 11-Nov-12 20:04:15

I knew that would get your attention grin

It is almost true. Fatpig is due her babies imminently. They are her second (unplanned) litter due to total incompetence (not mine hmm)

The first time she had babies, she had 4. All advice said that we should leave GP and her babies alone for 24-48 hours without disturbing them. After 48 hours we found 1 dead baby (which by the look of it had not been living at birth, or certainly not for long) and 3 lethargic babies, which I rushed to the vets. Sadly one died en route to the vets sad The other two I hand reared, and fed every 2 hours through the night for the next 48 hours, then 4 hourly etc. They were even smugled into a pre-planned hotel room with us for a holiday grin

I need to know what I should do this time when fatpig has her babies. They are all living in a hutch directly outside of my lounge window. However, past experience suggests that even with them under surveillance, I will not be able to see the babies as they will stay in the bedding area and I'm therefore unlikely to catch them feeding from mum (or not)

I could bring them inside, and put them in a catbasket, which is where they lived last time - and theoretically I could watch them to check they are feeding.....only I am very pregnant myself and so would need catbasket on table next to me, in eyesight of dog.

The disadvantages of bringing them inside if they are feeding well, is the rehabilitation back to outside - i have 2 male piggies who live indoors, and fatpig is not mine, she belongs to a business which I own, and would have to go back outside when we know her babies are able to fend for themselves.

WWYD? feed them yourself? Let mum have 24hrs + to see if she does? bring them in? Leave them outside?

70isaLimitNotaTarget Sun 11-Nov-12 21:40:39

Cor this is tough. There are a lot of variables and "if I did this then that wouldn't have happened) to consider.

OK:
4 is quite a big litter for a GP (not the most they can have but big).
My childhood sow has 3 in her first litter, one born dead.
Then another 3, but one got a bit 'ignored'

It's quite late in the year for baby pigs.
TBH I wouldn't leave baby pigs outside. In your shoes I'd keep her in (but not too warm) until they are weaned. I don't know if the cat carrier would be big enough though. Is there an area in a room that you could fence off. Even a playpen or a paddling pool- protected from the dog.

Is it essential that you have her - if she's not your pig and you being pg?
But you'd have to keep her away from your males (the smell of a female would get them all flustered and they are very fertile after giving birth.Which was why we got Litter #2)

Could your boars go out? (My 2 boars are out in their Pighouse (the DCs old wooden playhouse) with a heater for night-time and Snuggle Pad/ Hotties for day) It is bally cold here and they are 2 yo , but they were little gits inside last weekend (fireworks) so I decided to let them have the space but heat + lots hay. They seem to approve. But I wouldn't do that to a baby pig.
What will happen to girl pig after her piglets are born?

GPs are usually pretty good mums and baby GPs can eat nibble food within a couple of days (though are on milk for 3-4 weeks til weaned)

If she's indoors you can make sure she gets enough to drink/eat and that the babies are feeding.

Put out a shout to damppatchnot she's a breeder but I don't know if she's got any piglets hatching at the moment.

guineapiglet Mon 12-Nov-12 10:03:35

\hi - hope all goes well with the new arrivals-to-be - hope they all arrive fit and healthy. I agree with 70 - I really think it is too cold outside for babies at the moment - light frost here last night, and they really need to be somewhere warm and snuggly, and within your eyesight so you can keep an eye on them, - any chance of getting an indoor hutch ( freecycle in your area?) so they can be dog and boar proofed. When you say 'go out' - do you mean to a shed/garage/shelter etc? as you are right, it will be a big shock to go from in to out at this time of year - could they go into an outbuilding of some sort with lots of heating arrangements? Or could the boars go out temporarily until the little ones have arrived and are thriving. We lost a lovely baby girl at this time of year ( a P@H reject, bless her, dont get me started on that) - Im convinced it was a temperature shock for her, coming from there to our house ( she was indoors, but maybe not warm enough)

I feel really sorry for fatpig and wish I could be of help to you - she sounds like such a sweetie and needs lots of support and reassurance to help her get the babies settled.

Good luck!

BonkeyMollocks Mon 12-Nov-12 10:10:25

No help but you enticed me with the title grin

Pics when possible would be very very much appreciated! wink

70isaLimitNotaTarget Mon 12-Nov-12 18:37:50

YY Pictures are compulsary .

<<Elbows Bonky out the way. You had LittlePig as a tiny little 5 wheeker. I missed all that with my lardy boars>>

grin

Shelium Mon 12-Nov-12 19:42:01

soooo, fatpig had 5 babies last night!!! sadly two did not survive. one was still fetal shaped (and MASSIVE) so i'm guessing he died in the birthing process, or just before. The other seemed very thin and long sad

The three surviving are so lovely, and seem healthy and happy. We've had them out to check them over and to check they are energetic and not lethargic. They seem fine, and are currently snuggled with mum smile

We have decided to move the hutch into our kitchen (which is cool) overnight, and back out again each morning. When they are returned to where they came from, they will be in an undercover cellar area with washing machines - but with no door, so cool, but not freezing. They are in a big nest of hay, and they have newspaper placed over the top to keep the area smaller and warmer.

I will prob keep them here for the week to check all okay, as I'm well aware one piggy might get less milk than the rest. There are other people who have offered to have them for me, but I don't trust anyone else to make sure they survive hmm

will upload pics when have them out properly later in the week. Thank you for your help smile

guineapiglet Mon 12-Nov-12 19:55:20

Hi - so pleased that you have some babies, bless her, she must be very busy and tired. It is a shame about the ones who didnt make it, but hopefully she will be able to give all her attention to the ones who survived and they will be thriving over the next few weeks. As long as they are warm and snuggly and you can see them and what they are up to, they have agreat chance.

They will be very labour intensive for a while, but it sounds like you have a plan of action to keep them warm and safe. Like the others, I look forward toseeing them when you have a mo' - hope all goes well smile

BonkeyMollocks Mon 12-Nov-12 20:53:32

Yay! Babies!

sad about the ones that didn't make it but there is always a reason for these things.

Hope mum and babies are doing ok.

<elbows 70 back out the way>
5 weeks is not baby baby. I neeeed to see babies! You ahve had litters iirc envy .
So ner! <sticks out tounge>

grin

Shelium Mon 12-Nov-12 21:18:14

hadn't realised DH and dd got the babies out for a photo shoot earlier envy

pictures now on profile grin

alemci Mon 12-Nov-12 21:22:12

that baby boar is gorgeous.

70isaLimitNotaTarget Mon 12-Nov-12 21:33:40

They are a good size by the looks of things (I know your DD probably has tiny hands)
They look alert and interested.

It might have been that she just physically couldn't carry 5 piglets sad
She'll have her work cut out with three as it is (the expression on a sows face when their piglets dive under the mums tummy. They stand on tiptoes. It's a shock face ) smile

Shelium Mon 12-Nov-12 21:50:46

they are a good size grin

I haven't yet seen fatpig feeding them, though she scarpers whenever the lid is raised on her hutch, so I guess I'm unlikely to. The fact that the 3 babies run away when mum does is enough to let me know that they are healthy enough to be left alone for now.

Hutch and pigs safely esconced inside for the night smile

70isaLimitNotaTarget Mon 12-Nov-12 22:08:42

You'll have to rename FatPig .
She'll be A-Bit-Porky-and-Squidgey-Round-the-Middle-Pig now grin

KRITIQ Mon 12-Nov-12 23:41:32

What gorgeous bubs! Is one a ridgeback?

ChippingInLovesAutumn Tue 13-Nov-12 00:06:59

They're beautiful & huge - it's amazing three made it when they are that size!

How many are you keeping??

Please tell your DH thank you!!

guineapiglet Tue 13-Nov-12 09:46:12

Oh, arent they gorgeous, and so big and lively looking - well done Fatpig, they are lovely babies. Glad they are all safe and sound and doing so well. The guinea mum needs a new name - can we have a picture of her, too, so we can suggest something!!!!! Good luck looking after them all, am very jealous. XX:0

Shelium Wed 14-Nov-12 20:21:00

babypig number 3 has a part ridgeback - he is definitely a boy pig. I think the others may be girls. The mum is smooth, with a slight swirly head bit going on. Dad is a spiky, scruffy, almost long haired creature with a lovely nature smile

I will try and find a pic of fatpig, who is now slimpig - I am jealous of her shape shrinking ability! there is no WAY I look that good 3 days after birth grin

Baby pigs all healthy, babypig 1 has a gammy eye, but one.of her last litter did too, and he recovered fine. I wipe it with cooled boiled water once per day, and that seems to be enough to keep it open. It still looks blind at the mo, but iirc, the last one looked blind for weeks, and then suddenly the eye cleared, so I'm not too worried. Today the babypigs started to eat grin they are all squeaky and wriggly little things that all walk in a line to a tomato, lick it and run away! too cute.

We will probably keep the girl pigs, as one can live with fatpig, and one with her sister. Fatpig and sis used to live together, but sis got ill (anyone remember sockpig?) and I had to bring sockpig home to nurse back to health, and now they hate each other sad so a new friend for each of them should go down well (i hope)

My friend wants the ridgeback boy. grin

BonkeyMollocks Wed 14-Nov-12 20:28:59

Oh your Sockpigs nurse!

How is she?

Shelium Wed 14-Nov-12 20:39:11

still slim for a piggy, but out of a sock, and back in a hutch, eating and drinking normally. Thank goodness, it took 6 months!

Sadly, she is now quite scared of people, after being a very sociable pig. I guess I betrayed her trust. Hopefully she'll get over it soon grin

BonkeyMollocks Wed 14-Nov-12 20:55:00

Awww, it will be lovely for her to have a friend again!

Shelium Wed 14-Nov-12 21:10:11

pic of fatpig prior to birth now on profile.

guineapiglet Thu 15-Nov-12 11:52:04

Oh, bless Fatpig, what a big girl she was on the birth day - and what a cutie. KRITIQ is running a thread gathering together all our photos, so we can put together a calendar type thing, would be lovely to include her and her babies. IS there a picture of Sockpig? Would love to see her.

Shelium Thu 15-Nov-12 18:57:42

pictures of sockpig uploaded! They are only "old" pics of her in her socks when she first came home with me. Now she is fatter and well, I have no pics!!! sorry smile

guineapiglet Thu 15-Nov-12 20:33:43

Oh thank you Shelium, sockpig is a real sweetie as well, you lucky thing! She has obviously been well cared for and is happy and thriving - what a great story. Great photos of her.

BertieBotts Thu 15-Nov-12 20:40:22

5 is loads! She must have some kind of super fertility gene grin I read somewhere that if you halve the amount of nipples a mammal has, that's their average litter size and total number of nipples is (supposedly) maximum, give or take. GPs have two like humans grin

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