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Eek! I've pimped the GP cage and Harry's not happy! Plus now I see how small it is (photo)..what to do?

(19 Posts)
LookBackInAnger Sun 06-Mar-16 04:37:27

Hello, having diligently read all the answers I've had on here, and archive stuff, I went out, bought fleece, washed it a lot, cut to size... And relined Harry's cage.

Harry's gone camo commando. He rushed around at first, squeaked as if he was on board the titanic, dragged veggies into his Iglu, and won't come out. It's a warm day so I've drawn a couple of curtains in that room, and the air con is on, but he's on polyester in his little house. He'll get far too hot.

1 - Does he just need time? Should I take him out for a bit. He's already pissed off by having to sit in his travel box for 10 minutes...
2 - Having seen the photo, do you agree that he needs extra play stuff - I've seen some fleece tunnels and things on Etsy, am thinking about those.
3 - I've found a local small pets rescue and they're crying out for homes for babies and females, so have an appt with vet on Wednesday for a once over and find out about neutering. Given that, would this cage (1mx.5m) plus same cage again with adjoining bridge do the trick?
4 - He has an outside house (his country manor) but the ramp is very much a part of getting between the 3 floors, no one floor is very big. He hates the ramp. SHould we give the outside hutch to the rescue centre and get/make something else?

We have a big problem with sun, eagles, snakes and crows/mynah birds here so he would definitely need something covered when outside I think. We have the chicken wire for a run, but I (meaning DH does not agree) think it needs a covering too...

Too much for one post I'm sure, but maybe you're relieved I'm taking this so seriously??

PS Please forgive washing/toys in background. This is the back door which apparently is where we put laundry when it's ready for the laundry room, not in a basket, not in the laundry, just by the back door just focus on the pig (everyone else here is having to fend for themselves whilst I get the new piggy baby settled grin)

PPS I managed to coax him out for one photo before he flew back in with a lot of of guttural "I'm pissed off and consider yourself admonished" noises. He's huge in there now! Somehow the camo has made the space appear smaller failed at Guinea interior design, no help for our major renovation next year

lborgia Sun 06-Mar-16 07:28:42

Well one problem's gone away, he was uncomfortable at the idea of weeing on the fleece. .he waited till he was on ds's lap and did the biggest wee ever. He's back to happy :-) meanwhile, still wondering about cage size and toys. ..

lborgia Sun 06-Mar-16 07:29:30

Sorry, I seem to have two names on here and don't understand how? !

lborgia Tue 08-Mar-16 10:08:12

Hello. I know it's a long post, but it would be really useful to get a little guidance. . I'm taking Harry to vets tomorrow so maybe she will have some ideas. .thank you!

EastMidsGPs Tue 08-Mar-16 15:49:21

He might prefer a cover over at least part of the cage. They are prey animals and he may be feeling vulnerable? Cannot assess how big cage is but always think the bigger the better especially with toys igloos and the like

lborgia Tue 08-Mar-16 17:04:07

Thanks East it's 1m ×.5m. The igloo is his home for hiding/sleeping in, but i could cover the end too. Cheers, Lu

FernieB Tue 08-Mar-16 18:05:38

The cage is not really big enough for a pig and definitely not big enough for two. Connecting cages via a bridge sounds a bit dubious - pigs aren't known for their climbing abilities and would be unlikely to use it or could fall from it. Better to get a new bigger cage and start again. When you introduce a new pig, you'd need to neutralise the cage anyway, so a new cage then would make that easier.

The outside hutch on 3 levels sounds a bit complicated for a pig. They're much better with a large space on one level. A few do manage to learn about ramps but most don't bother and the other levels don't get used.

Make sure he has a little house or box or something inside his cage to hide in.

70isaLimitNotaTarget Tue 08-Mar-16 23:07:41

All piggies are different of course but I've steered away from multi level living since our GP1 and GP2 completely ignored the lovely wide shallow carpeted ramp DH lovingly built. Well they sat under it, never climbed it.

They didn't like fabric bedding either , loved hay.

My present trio will sleep on fleece (on top of newspaper on a woodpellet base so it's soft) but like their hay to burrow and tunnel through.

Your minimum space for two pigs is 4'x2' for living in. (Mine sleep in a 2x4 but it is just for that, Winter Night Bed)

For two boars , I'd go bigger if you can. Territorial issues can be avoided if you handle their space right but a nightmare to overcome if they start.

If you have your piggie neutered are you thinking of 1 or 2 sows?

I think some piggies panic a bit with any changes. When we brought home a new piggie, we never saw them out in the cage while they were quarentining. We new they ventured out- they ate and poohed, but as soon as they heard us approach, they scarpered.
We do like to move their furniture around though to bamboozle them grin

I've seen some YouTube videos (my DD searches them out) where the owner has attatched two cages with a wooden bridge, but the piggies were very agile. Mine aren't. And you'd need to fasten the cages together really sturdily but still be able to clean .
Have you looked at C&C? Lots of owners use them, you can customise the build .You can do 2 levels to make a sleeping area, make sure the walls are high enough to stop them escaping and if you have other animals , build a roof in. Line with a waterproof base then put fleece or paper inside.

If you have him neutered, he'll need between 4-6 weeks to go sterile depending on who you ask. (I've done both. Our GP3 had 4 weeks , our GP6 was already neutered but had 6 weeks . Both had 4 weeks to quarentine while they went sterile. No piglets occured grin )
So we've side-by-sided a boar and sows but we had a strict routine to make sure they couldn't escape into the forbidden territory.
They got to know each other safely and had company. Depends if they are happy for they sow to live beside your pig or say "Wait".

Good Luck smile

LookBackInAnger Tue 08-Mar-16 23:46:58

Oh thank you .. And oh crap. I'm starting to feel a bit overwhelmed to be honest. Much like when I had new babies. I want them to have the best environment possible, and hate the idea that he's unhappy. Rescue woman said it was best to get a baby (either sex) or a female to pair with Harry. I'm seeing the vet tonight with him so will discuss with her more.

I've seen some great IKEA hacks. Will sort something out. Not sure if we have C&C stuff in Oz, but will have another check.

THank you so much, will go back through what you've both said ...

70isaLimitNotaTarget Tue 08-Mar-16 23:51:30

Personally speaking I wouldn't have put either of my boars with a baby female (they reach sexual maturity quite young and even if your boar is neutered they still think they can DTD)

My feisty adult sows (picked for precisely that reason) told our GP3 (over 3lb in weight) to Foxtrot Oscar when he tried it on. A tiny sow wouldn't have fared so well I don't think.

A tiny male piglet and a boar adult is a good combination, but keep a close eye when the Baby Turns Teenage grin

tabulahrasa Wed 09-Mar-16 00:00:52

I've joined two cages together before with a house brick either side of the door and they managed climbing on a brick fine...but, they were bigger cages and you lose quite a bit of floor space to the bricks.

I think you need a bigger cage too tbh.

ouryve Wed 09-Mar-16 00:01:46

Probably best to have made the changes much slower than you did. He doesn't have the first clue about why you've made the changes that you did, but heck is his home different, now!

lborgia Wed 09-Mar-16 00:36:36

How do i slightly change the fleece? I knew to change foods gradually, but surely it's either shavings or fleece ...urgh. should i change him back? He's squeaking and popcorning like a trooper. .hay. presumably not the hay/Lucerne he eats? What if he eats it? I think he's supposed to be on Lucerne for another 6 months? I've read here soft, almost raffia, straw, not horse/wheat hay...

I will crack on and get a bigger cage. .wtf did the shop not suggest something bigger? ?they said we were being "generous" hmm

Meanwhile, thanks*70s*, I'm happy to take the advice, find him a big sister/older aunt type!

FernieB Wed 09-Mar-16 08:46:41

Most pet shops have no clue about proper housing for small pets and nearly all the cages they sell are far too small or completely inappropriate (multi level living for Guinea pigs).

Don't worry about changing the cage about. I do this regularly to my boys and they're always a bit confused and can't find anything for a bit, even if the food bowls only moved 2 inches! They're not the brightest of animals but I'm quite happy with a pet that can't (most of the time) outwit me.

FernieB Wed 09-Mar-16 08:49:18

I never bothered with special hay for baby pigs - my little boy (now an enormous lump) had to eat what his grown-up Uncle had. Also I only get one kind of hay. Pigs don't distinguish between eating hay and sleeping hay - they'll give most things a nibble.

lborgia Wed 09-Mar-16 11:10:38

Thanks Fernie the vet had yet more different advice - i feel as if I'm trying to use the baby whisperer and Gina Ford at the same time confused. I have a real child who's just sobbed to sleep about bullying so may have to think about that now.

FernieB Wed 09-Mar-16 14:41:56

My vet did have loads of advice about special hay for my rabbit - I didn't have the heart to tell her that he hates it and won't eat it.

Been there with the bullying too ( on many occasions) - hope your DC wakes up feeling better about it and more positive. thanks. Guinea pigs are so much simpler to deal with than children.

lborgia Wed 09-Mar-16 20:32:33

Yes, he had woken up feeling better, and we've got a resolution for half the problem. One boy is actually a really good friend and he was told some stuff that wasn't true. ..etc etc. The other child is horrible and that will be the difficult one. Yes, Paddington bear hard stares from Harry are much easier to bear! Thanks again for the advice and encouragement.

EastMidsGPs Fri 11-Mar-16 12:04:19

Hugs for DS and also hope Harry is settling in. All takes time .. but good fun at same time.
Have this morning freaked Sadie out (Mollie not bothered) i changed tge batteries in my sleep aid thing in the kitchen whilst they were playing. So went through all the settings babbling brook, waves crashing on the shore and birdsong - the birdsong had Sadie drrrŕ drrrrr drrrrr ing
She must have thought we'd eagles in the house !! And had to be fortified with both parsley and cucumber to alay her fear.
Now she's sulking and not in the mood for cuddles 😀

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