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Small pets

GP on their own?

8 replies

BonkeyMollocks · 30/04/2012 18:42

So, today we bought a GP. Never had one before, today and tonight is dedicated to research.

The pet shop we bought him from are usually pretty good, but all the boars were on their own. everything I have read says that they should be kept in pairs/small groups.

We bought one and are wondering if he should have a friend. Not now, but maybe in a few weeks once he settles. I know they are social animals.

He's a indoor living room piggy, so loads and loads of attention.

I have heard alot about rabbits being ok on their own if they are house rabbits. Is this the case for GP's? Can they be happy alone or do they need a friend?

OP posts:
70isaLimitNotaTarget · 30/04/2012 19:11

Well, first of all welcome to the world of guinea-pigs.Smile

Did the PetShop advice you to buy just one pig? Really they should have company- sow+sow; boar+boar; neutered boar+sow/2 sows.

I have bought single GP as singletons, when I was a child. We had wrongly sexed 2 sows (bought 4 months apart) who turned out to be boar/sow (they got on for a while, inevitably she got pg -we didn't know he was a he til then. Unfortunately she bullied him)
I got 2 sows who were very unfriendly/independant.
My currant ones are brothers from rescue.

TBH I'd be wary of the petshops who keep animals seperate like that-were all the boars in single cages?
If they didn't advice you to get 2 then that's remiss.

<br />
Your options are : keep him single, but that's not really fair on him .<br />
Get him a cagemate.If you get a boar the same age (if he's a baby) or younger (if he's a bit older) then introduce them on neutral territory, before he gets his smell on everything.<br />
A rescue might have a baby boar that you can bond him with, they will supervise the first meeting.<br />
<br />
Or you can have him neutered (he might not be old enough yet, your vet will advice) then you can get a female when he's 'safe'.<br />
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~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~<br />
<br />
You are going to get told on here that you should have done the research first. You'd have also been adviced away from petshops. They encourage the breeding for profit of pets .<br />
<br />
But it's time to find out as much as you can for your new pig.<br />
<br />
Accomodation- size (especially if you have 2 boys, they are space greedy)<br />
Bedding-what to avoid<br />
Food- what to give, and what not to<br />
Health.<br />
<br />
<br />
Lots of threads on here<img loading="lazy" class="inline-flex mumsnet-emoji" alt="Wink" src="">
fridayfreedom · 30/04/2012 19:13

may be worth seeing if there is a GP rescue near you who would find him a friend and help with the pairing up.

BonkeyMollocks · 30/04/2012 19:18

Thanks, they did say he would be fine alone but I think we have decided to get another in a few weeks. Will see what's around, there is a rescue not far away :) I think he needs time to settle in first.

I'm clued up on everything else, piggy has a big cage and a playpen, I just got confused when they said he would be fine alone. They had the females together, but said the boys fight Confused

All the boys were separate. All the females were in groups.

OP posts:
70isaLimitNotaTarget · 30/04/2012 19:20

Boars are usually adviced as pairs some sites advice no more than 2 in a group, and certainly not 2 boars with females.
Though some GP owners on here have 3+ boys (but I'm sure they've all had problems at some time with in-house bickering) when they reach their Teenage Attitude.

At least if your PetShop kept the boys seperate then nobody will take home a female with a surprise. (I bought a female with a +1 when I was a child).

70isaLimitNotaTarget · 30/04/2012 19:26

I had 4 females (2 mums and their daughters) >Old mum didn't like new mum.But when she died, the 3 females were fine.

Boars are usually fine if they are related or bonded.
They will have spats, but read up on their body language to judge what they're thinking. Lots online about noises/behaviour.

Our boys had one bust up last year.
They'd just started coming in at night and thought their (perfectly adequate IMHO) 4'x2' cage was a bit meh. They'd gorged their little selves on coriander. Our little pig had an out-of-character tantrum and attacked his brother. But fine after.We seperated the indoor cage, they are together during the day (night and day now in their outdoor house)

KRITIQ · 02/05/2012 00:17

It's sad that pet shops are not giving the best advice about boars. Yes, they can "argue" particularly when one or both are going through the teen phase, but I've only ever had to separate 2 boars just temporarily (as was going away for a few days, so reintroduced them when I got back.) Are they worried that people will bring them back if they make noise and fuss?

Definitely check out a rescue to see if they have any young males who are looking for a home. Some rescues are also able to try and bond adult boars. If yours is still pretty young, another boar of any age just might be able to bond with him.

I know there are a rare few piggies that seem unable to bond with other pigs so have to be kept on their own, but the vast majority WILL be happier being with another pig (if a boar) or pigs (if neutered boar or female.) Best of luck and lots of good advice from 70 there!

FernieB · 02/05/2012 09:59

I would have thought it would be better to get another piggie before he gets too settled in and begins to see everything as 'his territory'. We have 2 boars (not brothers) whom we adopted when they were 5 months old, just before the terrible teens. We have been through some arguing, but they're fine now. We were lucky in that we never had to separate them. One is bigger than the other anyway, so he is naturally 'top pig' and now ignores the other if he tries to challenge him.

Enjoy having your pig in the house - ours are in the kitchen and shout like mad if we go near the fridge. They really are lovely little things and very funny.

We also have a houserabbit and he likes playing with them too.

silver73 · 02/05/2012 18:25

Please get another GP as soon as you can. They need at least one friend.

The RSPCA clearly state that GPs should not be alone unless a vet or animal behaviour specialist advises it.

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