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Lone Guinea Pig

(14 Posts)
LaFlottes Tue 19-Apr-16 17:27:16

Hi - One of our guinea pigs very sadly died this morning.

We now have a 4 year old female guinea pig, who lives outside in the spring/summer and indoors in the winter.

I have made some enquiries today about adopting a friend for her. I spoke to the adoption centre at Pets at Home and they really made it sound like we shouldn't get another one. They said it would be really hard to introduce another guinea pig, it would stress the existing one, we'd have to find one that has lived outside etc etc.

Any thoughts from anyone? We would of course give our remaining guinea pig lots of cuddles, but at the end of the day, we are at work/school all day.

Thank you.

LittleCandle Tue 19-Apr-16 17:30:18

I lost 2 of our 3 piggies several years ago in a heat wave. We got another one to keep her company and they got along great. My friend also introduced a new piggie when one of hers died. However, they were younger than yours, so I would leave yours as an only. Piggies can be tricky animals. My friend's piggie lived to be 6 and a bit, and lost his second companion very suddenly, but seemed contented on his own.

loubielou2 Tue 19-Apr-16 17:42:03

Op, I would really encourage you to introduce a new pal to your piggie. We have had several guineas and very successfully introduced new ones. Pay no attention to the pet shop. This particularly shop actually encouraged us to do it! Anyway, our story is that we lost two of three and were left with a sow who was nearly 5. We introduced two new ones of 12 weeks old, gradually, over a week. She was very sad and withdrawn on her own and immediately perked up and seemed happier when the two new ones arrived. She nuzzled into them and seemed happy. Unfortunately, her age and perhaps missing her old friends, took her to guinea heaven, joining the other two in our front garden grave. We are now left with our two new ones. I would be very worried about a little piggie on their own especially if you are out all day. They must live in groups and can get very depressed without any company.

starry0ne Tue 19-Apr-16 17:47:27

I had 2 male g.pigs.One died when he was about 3.. the other one is 6 now and seems very content on his own..

70isaLimitNotaTarget Tue 19-Apr-16 17:58:53

Sows can be right little "characters" but you know your piggies temprement and a Rescue can give you an idea of what they have. There may well be other pigs in similar situations who have been left on their own and the owners hand them in.

Our sows are unrelated but were matched up as a pair in Rescue. They are a bit snippy in season but thankfully it only lasts a day or two.

FernieB Tue 19-Apr-16 18:16:06

Go to a rescue. There are some dedicated pig rescues around who will probably be able to help and match your girl up with a friend.

LaFlottes Wed 20-Apr-16 11:01:50

Thanks everyone for your kind words and thoughts on our situation.

I'm so sad about Scruffy, she was lovely and cuddly and we miss her.

Remaining piggie seemed ok at first this morning, but then I noticed she had buried herself under loads of hay and she didn't seem to want to come out. She doesn't normally hide like this.

So I've fixed up the indoor hutch again and she's in with me and running around and eating and seems happier and more like herself.

I have spoken to a rescue today, it's an hour away but they have one female or one neutered male of about the same age, so they are going to take her for a week and match her up with a friend and then hopefully we will bring them both home.

I think she maybe would be ok as an only piggie, but she worried me this morning as that was really out of character for her and she hadn't eaten all that much so I think if she can find a buddy, that will be a good thing, plus it will be nice to give a home to a piggie in need.

Fingers crossed x

MrsFlorrick Wed 20-Apr-16 11:27:25

Definitely get another piggie friend!!

Pigs get lonely.

Last year we lost one of our boars. Within a week of losing him the remaining boar looked so sad and wasn't wheeking or charging around as normal. Poor pig.

We got piggie matched (piggie dating smile).
You can do this a number of ways. Either through rescues who will let you bring your pig and put them together with potential pigs to see if they hit it off. Or some pet shops including pets at home in our area will set up a piggie matching session or offer that you can take a pig home and see if it settles with your existing pig and bring new pig back if they fight.

We got one which we brought home and the two hit it off immediately! Firm friends. The lady who helped us was very knowledgeable and able to help guide us to a suitable friend.

The little pig we got was sort of lonely within its litter as the others had paired off. And our existing piggie was lonely. The minute they clapped eyes on each other, the literally cuddled up next to each other and sniffed each other and didn't move for well over an hour.

The new piggie was young at only 12 weeks old and is now a bit of a teenager and occasionally tries to hump the older piggie but he doesn't mind and just brushes him off. They hang out and play and are very happy.

LaFlottes Thu 05-May-16 11:45:06

I just thought I would report back to say that Squeak has a friend! A neutered boar and they are getting on so well. They play, snuggle and chat loads! She was so lonely after little scruffy died and this really has helped. Her friend is called Pickle! Pickle is 3.5 years old and was given up to a rescue.

I have a question though. They have been in our indoor hutch and the rescue recommended not putting any igloos or tubes in, so that they wouldn't squabble over them and also to kind of force them to get to know each other.

When we put a tube in while we are watching them, they love it and run through it and get all excited! We took it out at night though. They seem to love just lying about in all the hay and Squeak doesn't seem to miss her igloo.

So we are moving them to the outdoor hutch tomorrow - seeing as it's now nice and warm and it's also larger so more space.

Should we put the igloos in? Or just loads of hay in the nesting/sleeping area as they do seem to prefer just to snuggle!

Any other tips?

FernieB Thu 05-May-16 12:36:01

Firstly welcome to Pickle! Pleased that you found a friend and they're getting on well.

If they're getting on really well, I'd at least stick a tunnel in for them to pootle through. I can understand the Rescue being cautious - sometimes pigs can lie across the entrance to an igloo blocking the other pig in (looks sternly at Gingerpigwink). As soon as you're happy they're settled together, give them igloos and things to play in. I have one extra large igloo which fits three friendly pigs and two boars (when one of them hasn't noticed the other has sneaked in). You could try larger igloos so they can snuggle up together.

70isaLimitNotaTarget Thu 05-May-16 19:43:53

Welcome Pickles to the Super Furry Animal family grin

The igloos and hidey spaces - yes they do need to escape if one decides to be bolshy or just inconsiderate (eyerolls at Lardy Arsed GP4)
Cardboard boxes that you can cut two doors -and throw them away when soiled- are good . And you can keep giving them new ones to keep them interested.
Snuggles to your new boar and your piggie girl will love him. smile

LaFlottes Fri 06-May-16 12:44:00

Thanks folks! Have given them tubes and they are having a right old time of it!! Loads of fun. Then they buried themselves in loads of hay together and had a snooze - oh the life of a guinea pig!

I think I will also buy the biggest igloo I can find and will get creative with some boxes! Thanks!

70isaLimitNotaTarget Fri 06-May-16 13:12:39

Our neutered boar (we've had him a year now) is trying it onnnnn with the sows.
They are giving him The Look (and it ain't a come hither look, it's a Get Knotted look)

He tries , Bless Him. smile

LaFlottes Fri 06-May-16 13:26:06

I think there's a bit of that going on here too!! Although she is about three times the size of Pickle and just gives him a "look" and he slinks off!!!

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