• You can find lots of information on how to settle in, understand your new guinea pigs in our New Owners Guide Collection but please ask any questions you have in Wannabe and New Owners' section.

3 boars after vet--help!

greensn

Junior Guinea Pig
Joined
Jul 15, 2016
Messages
32
Reaction score
8
Points
145
Location
Moore, OK
Norman (2) and Leroy (1.5) have been living together since Winter of 2016. I introduced a rescue, Stewie (2), who is asthmatic, about a month ago, and they are doing amazing! Norman has recurring health issues linked to his middle ear infections. He has nerve damage that causes him to blink less in his right eye, and he is prone to eye infections. He started getting really sick over the weekend so I took him and Leroy to the vet today and they stayed for about 8 hours. I didn't want to take Stewie because I figured it would stress Stewie out, and I figured he might like some alone time. He was honestly the submissive one of the bunch and would retreat to his loft I built if he needed a breather. I put my two boys back in the cage and wanted to leave Norman alone as he is pretty uncomfortable at the moment and Leroy is pretty tired too.

I noticed that Stewie has been chasing Leroy around and mounting him. He isn't bothering Norman too much because Leroy is more dominant than Norman. I am so frustrated though! Stewie didn't live with another guinea pig for almost two years because of his condition and now all of the sudden he is being a jerk!

I know I shouldn't interfere because they need to work it out but I am just so concerned for Norman and I don't want any stress on him. What should I do? Should I just let them work it out? They aren't actually fighting, but Leroy and Norman are annoyed, as am I.

**EDIT-- it isn't constant chasing and mounting. but they will lay down for a while near each other and then start again. I hear Norman and Leroy doing the submissive squeak. They are all allowing each other to eat and drink.
 

Siikibam

Teenage Guinea Pig
Joined
Jul 31, 2017
Messages
720
Reaction score
615
Points
525
Location
Sevenoaks
I’m afraid trip board have quite a high failure rate. Having said that, when bonding any pigs, you don’t intervene until blood has been drawn. I’d prepare for the possibility of having to separate them (maybe Stewie on his own). They’re all past the teenage phase but (I think) dominance play can still occur. Just keep an eye on them I guess. How big is their space/cage?
 

piggieminder

Forum Donator 2019/20
Joined
Apr 7, 2015
Messages
6,198
Reaction score
7,421
Points
1,625
Location
Bristol, UK
I would leave them to sort it out for now but keep a close eye on things. Trios of boars rarely work and seperating them has caused them to have a dominance dispute. Even pairs of boars who are just tolerating each other will do this after change, sometimes even when beng moved from cage to outdoor run, floortime or a cage clean.
You may find this thread helpful Behaviour, Bonding & Bereavement Guides
 

greensn

Junior Guinea Pig
Joined
Jul 15, 2016
Messages
32
Reaction score
8
Points
145
Location
Moore, OK
Update: This morning everything seemed mostly back to normal! What I did last night was take them all out for floor time in the next room while I gutted their cage--washed everything in dish soap (bowls and water bottles) and vinegar (cage and houses) and put all clean fleece and blankets in. There was some dominance behavior but it seems like they have settled down. There still has not been any aggressive behavior. Hopefully this worked! As for Norman's eye/ sinus infection, his eye is very goopy and crusty but we started his antibiotic and eye ointment this morning. Still eating and drink fine.
 

greensn

Junior Guinea Pig
Joined
Jul 15, 2016
Messages
32
Reaction score
8
Points
145
Location
Moore, OK
I’m afraid trip board have quite a high failure rate. Having said that, when bonding any pigs, you don’t intervene until blood has been drawn. I’d prepare for the possibility of having to separate them (maybe Stewie on his own). They’re all past the teenage phase but (I think) dominance play can still occur. Just keep an eye on them I guess. How big is their space/cage?
They have a large 2x5 panel C&C with a 1x2 loft.
 

Reenie

Forum Donator 2019/20
Joined
Jun 19, 2017
Messages
2,871
Reaction score
3,180
Points
1,225
Location
Kirkintilloch, Glasgow
Hi, I know it seems huge, but 2x5 is actually the minimum recommended size for 2 boars, so it's still a wee bit small for your three. If you have 2 more grids, you could extend lengthwise for a 6x2, or better still, extend widthwise for a 5x3, which gives them tons more space - half again what they have just now. That should help to minimise any issues, as they do seem to be doing well. I have my boar trio in a 5x3 with a 1x3 loft, and have not had any (major) issues. Cage Size Guide
 

greensn

Junior Guinea Pig
Joined
Jul 15, 2016
Messages
32
Reaction score
8
Points
145
Location
Moore, OK
Hi, I know it seems huge, but 2x5 is actually the minimum recommended size for 2 boars, so it's still a wee bit small for your three. If you have 2 more grids, you could extend lengthwise for a 6x2, or better still, extend widthwise for a 5x3, which gives them tons more space - half again what they have just now. That should help to minimise any issues, as they do seem to be doing well. I have my boar trio in a 5x3 with a 1x3 loft, and have not had any (major) issues. Cage Size Guide
The worst issue I have had in a 5x2 is that it gets dirty quick. They haven't had an issue with the size and they are ok now. I would recommend a larger for someone else. Stewie is a rescue and he lived in a 14x24 inch drawer for 9 months. he had his own 2x4 C&C and used a very very small portion of it :/ He honestly likes being up in the loft, and none of the other pigs use it so for now I think we are okay..
 

Siikibam

Teenage Guinea Pig
Joined
Jul 31, 2017
Messages
720
Reaction score
615
Points
525
Location
Sevenoaks
I’d go for a bigger setup regardless whether they’re ok with the 2x5. But you decide.
 
Top