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inherited 2 guinea pigs, hutch conundrum

(17 Posts)
AmIAWeed Tue 23-May-17 14:42:47

So we already have 3 girly piggies whom my daughter adores and goes out regularly to pick them weeds and grass. As a result someone in the village has kindly given us 2 more....they no longer want them, it's estimated they are about 4-5 but he isnt sure, his wife had them when babysitting and hasnt done that for 3 years, not sure on sex and not exactly friendly or wanting to be touched.
My concern is the hutch is tiny, and filthy.
I cant hold them to sex them, and even if I could and they were females they may not get on with mine and would need a long introduction.
Without wanting to sound mean, Piggies life span is typically 4-7 should I get them a new hutch, or simply look after them in their current home and see how they seem in a month or two health wise? If they've spent years in a tiny hutch, is it cruel to leave them in it a little longer, albeit much cleaner ?

Heratnumber7 Tue 23-May-17 14:44:05

Could you find a bigger, second hand hutch?
Please let the end of their lives be pleasant.

AmIAWeed Tue 23-May-17 14:48:19

I see lots of second hand hutches advertised but I've never seen one I'd consider putting any animal in :/ Most need new felt and by the time I'd bought it and added the felt I may as well buy new.

I guess my concern is more I buy them a bigger hutch and it all gets too much, change in owner, change in home...with their age
We do have an indoor hutch we use for the winter for the others so I guess they could go in there in the shed short term

Heratnumber7 Wed 24-May-17 08:17:40

Bless them. It's difficult to know what's best isn't it.

AmIAWeed Wed 24-May-17 09:12:37

So the husband and I had a chat last night - three guesses whose off to buy a bigger hutch this week!
If the worst happens, we'll simply keep the hutch as a back up, lets face it, whats the difference between 3 and 5 piggies! You still have to do the water every day and look for tasty weeds. If these dont last we can always get some more rescues...or wait for the next person to -abandon- 'donate' some

LoveMyLittleSuperhero Wed 24-May-17 09:21:35

You and your family sound lovely. Those piggies have landed on their feet and I'm sure they'll open up a bit in a better hutch and with more interaction from people.
FWIW I had a rescue who was five (at the youngest guess) and he lives another 3 years with me so I hope your little herd have lovely long lives with you all.

FauxFox Wed 24-May-17 09:22:19

Aw - well done! Poor little piggies they will think they are in heaven with the extra love and attention (and food) they'll get with you 💖

AmIAWeed Thu 25-May-17 10:15:44

I found a man that makes hutches!!
Couple of villages along a couple breed guinea pigs and rabbits, he also makes hutches. Been along this morning and picked up a hutch with a run attached plus a large foldable run both for £90 smile
I can now give the boys a nice big space and out door access, then let the piggies take it in turns in the big run on the grass on nice days like this.
They did show me their piggies and rabbits and it killed me not to buy ANOTHER hutch for more.

70isaLimitNotaTarget Thu 25-May-17 22:58:37

Ahhhh piggies....
But - your new arrivals are boars?

You need to be careful with their proximity to the girls or they might start fighting amongst themselves.

Probably as a boar pair they've been ok, not had a whiff of female piggies (hopefully they're too old to care though about females)

We have a couple of Bunny Business runs (metal ones, can fold flat).
Our neutered boar in one, the two females in the other.
Our boar had two wives and were lovely as a trio, but they died , sadly the other two sows didn't like the older girls , and don't like the boar sad. My female pig is quite hostile to him, so for his own safety he's on chat terms through a fence.

If DD cuddles the sows then picks up the boar he goes into purr overdrive grin

Your boars will come out of their shells.Yes they're going to have changes but they'll still have each other and they'll get used to a new routine with you. Even if they're a bit wild, they'll be wild in comfort.

And yes, 5 isn't any more trouble than 3, main outlay of time and money is the extra bedding.

AmIAWeed Tue 13-Jun-17 17:51:02

It happened.
Guinea pig died today.
We now have one elderly guinea pig who needs a companion - as age is unknown I'm reluctant to have him neutered and put him in with the girls so have spent the last hour contacting animal sanctuaries within an hour of us in the hope they may have some lone male piggys.
Daughter is distraught sad

FernieB Tue 13-Jun-17 22:32:55

Sorry to hear about your poor pigflowers. His remaining friend will be a bit sad and lonely at the moment. If you can't find him a suitable companion, given his age, maybe the best option would be to have him within sight and sound of your girls if that's possible. Then he has piggie company and can chat to them and see them. They may like having him to wheek at as well.

WowserBowser Tue 13-Jun-17 22:36:22

Oh I'm so sorry flowers

Well done on giving those piggies lovely lives though

taptonaria27 Tue 13-Jun-17 22:46:39

Where are you? I have a lone male (and have resisted a companion as I do not want to be a GP owner in perpetuity)

AmIAWeed Wed 14-Jun-17 09:19:21

Tap I am near Grimsby in Lincolnshire.

Our local rescue has confirmed they have none, trying a few further out now

70isaLimitNotaTarget Thu 15-Jun-17 23:31:53

Weed you might be safer letting him side-by-side with your other pigs.
He can chat for company and vocalise.

He might not want another male and you'd really need a boar piglet for the optimum match, which will leave you with a lone boar when your older pig goes.And your older boy might be stressed when a younger pig decides to over rule him.

He can live out his Golden Years with your pigs for company, good food, nice grazing.

My DD boar has a 2+1 set up, not ideal but safer for him than trying to get on with our rather bolshy girls <sigh>

sad to hear about your boar

AmIAWeed Fri 16-Jun-17 08:01:40

70 After having time to reflect I agree, a guinea pig and rabbit rescue got in touch after a local general animal rescue got in touch and they also suggested a baby [ig would be better, but of course then we'd get into a cycle.
I have moved him next to the girls and so far he seems quite happy, one girl in particular comes over to see him lots, out of the three girls she isnt as close to the others. If they look like they are really making friends I may get her neutured as shes only 1.5, for now though chatting through the wire seems to keep them happy.

We have had a slight black humour moment. We've just moved into the house and in the process of sorting the very overgrown garden. I've insisted the gardener spends all week getting one bed sorted to be our guinea pig graveyard. Husband is building a coffin, cross with name engraved has been ordered....and all that time I've a piggy in the freezer so my daughter can have a 'proper funeral'
You can't make this stuff up confused

70isaLimitNotaTarget Fri 16-Jun-17 11:18:49

Oh yes , the GuineaPig GraveYard (we have 3 boars in the Boar-der and 2 sows at the edge of the lawn. DH has to mentally set aside bits of garden for future use )

We put ours in Lock'n'Lock boxes full of leaves - for their trip over The Bridge of course- and just don't look too closely while they're in waiting.

I've never personally known a neutered sow, you'd need to check with vets that they'd do it (they do plenty of rabbits I'm sure)

We've managed boar+sow groups (while waiting for them to go sterile) , taking the girls out first (so if the boar escapes there's nothing for him) then the boar secured in case the girls escape on return or he tries to jump , the girls' side is empty -(one of our boars could jump out of the carry box grin , don't underestimate them )

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