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Abused cavy slave-biting piglet!

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2280CLAIRE

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Hi everyone,

I've had my boys from 6 weeks for about 3/4months now. One of them has a tendancy to nip me, and I don't know how to control it. I sometimes wonder if it is because I spoil them too much? Edward (the nipper) will be on my lap, wrapped up in a blanket and nice and cosy for a good while, but when I decide to put him back, he will nip me as if to say "How dare you!?". He always does it when I am picking him up to go back into his cage. My boyfriend also reports that when his hand has been near Edward (clean hands-not smelling of food), he has felt his teeth on his skin but my boyfriend has flinched fast enough to avoid being fully bitten.

When he bites, he doesn't draw blood, but he is leaving red marks and it is bothering me that it could be quite dangerous-i.e he bites me when I have him in my arms and it makes me jump (I have hard flooring throughout). Even when he is wrapped up (and I always hold him close to my body), he makes a distinct effort to bite me when I go to put him back after he has been comfortable. I wonder if it is because he doesn't know that I'm the boss yet!? His brother has never done it, and in fact is the total opposite-I can stroke his lip, kiss him on his whiskers/cheeks, and he loves it-never once bitten me.

Any advice would be gratefully received. I don't want to "discipline" him (e.g a tap on the nose)-as I feel this would only leave him scared of me, but I don't want him to believe he can continue to bite me either...
 

Guinea-wiggles

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I'm glad you've posted this cos i've got the same problem, my boys Albie & Alfie are completely different.
Albie is so placid he'll just sit and snuggle wherever he can get but Alfie (El Diablo) just bites me whenever he gets the chance and yes he's drawn blood on me and Albie difference being Albie bites him back and Alfie knows he's lost, then them 2 are friends again.
He doesn't bite either of my daughters or my bf or my mum or brother all of which regulary hold him - must just be me then:(
 

Teresa J

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Firstly guinea pigs cant reason like people so tapping him on the nose would be pointless - he would have no idea what it means and could actually cause him to be aggressive in defence or could frighten him badly :(

Guineas can sometimes nip if they are frightened and if it's mostly when you're lifting him it could be because he feels insecure and thinks he's going to fall - although this is unlikely if you have him wrapped in a blanket.

I think it would be worth getting him checked over by a vet or guinea expert as it's possible he could be nipping if he's physically uncomfortable. Skin problems ie: mites etc are relatively common in guineas and if he's feeling a bit itchy then this would cause him to nip - especially whilst being handled.

Teresa xx
 

2280CLAIRE

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Thankyou for your reply. Theresa. But I doubt it is mites-for several reasons, Ed loves to be stroked on my lap-he can't stop purring, and even relaxes to the point of his eyes closing with me stroking him, I also use the same brush for him and Jeff-but Jeff does not nip, and they are indoor piglets (I don't know where the mites would have come from). He also doesn't mind being picked up from the cage, but hates it when I disturb him after he has been snuggling on my lap. Is it possible that he is just grumpy?!
 

2280CLAIRE

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Thankyou for your reply. Theresa. But I doubt it is mites-for several reasons, Ed loves to be stroked on my lap-he can't stop purring, and even relaxes to the point of his eyes closing with me stroking him, I also use the same brush for him and Jeff-but Jeff does not nip, and they are indoor piglets (I don't know where the mites would have come from). He also doesn't mind being picked up from the cage, but hates it when I disturb him after he has been snuggling on my lap. Is it possible that he is just grumpy?!
 

2280CLAIRE

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Thankyou for your reply. Theresa. But I doubt it is mites-for several reasons, Ed loves to be stroked on my lap-he can't stop purring, and even relaxes to the point of his eyes closing with me stroking him, I also use the same brush for him and Jeff-but Jeff does not nip, and they are indoor piglets (I don't know where the mites would have come from). He also doesn't mind being picked up from the cage, but hates it when I disturb him after he has been snuggling on my lap. Is it possible that he is just grumpy?!
 

Wiebke

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Multiple posting can happen with a very slow system. The only thing you can do is delete the message in you extra posts within the fist 5 minutes - if you can! We usually replace it by "Sorry, double post" if it happens to us.

I would have your boy checked for mites - just in case, but it can be just a habit to tell you that he doesn't like to be picked up. He doesn't intend to draw blood, just to give you an admonitory tweak when he isn't best pleased at having to leave his cuddy blanket. Perhaps it is easier to cuddle him in a cuddle cup?
 

2280CLAIRE

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Hmmm...I think you are right, he is more than happy to oblige when I go to pick him up-he actually sits still in his cage when he sees me coming over! He just hates it when I put him back (and there is nothing wrong with his cage-120 cm, and has a fleece crash pad and tunnel, wooden house, chew toys, fleece lining, and cleaned every day!). The only time he doesn't go to nip me, is when he needs the toilet (he'll let me know by fidgetting/teeth chattering), and then I put him back-he doesn't mind going back/being picked up when it's his choice! I hope he grows out of it...

He's such a sweetie, he even enjoys his baths-and will happily sit in the sink being rinsed. He just absolutely hates being disturbed when he is resting on me.
 

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He's an only piggy, isn't he? So it would be no wonder why he so hates to have to go back to be on his lonely own!
 

2280CLAIRE

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No, he lives with his brother-Jeff. Jeff is the total opposite, and will actually let me stroke his piggy lip-never once bitten me. That's why I find it so odd!
 

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He's an only piggy, isn't he? So it would be no wonder why he so hates to have to go back to be on his lonely own!
Sorry, I reread my post, and he is not on his own. I suspect, he just enjoys being cosy!

Perhaps you can divert his attention by promising a treat that he gets as soon as he's back in the cage, so he has something to look forward to?
 

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He's an only piggy, isn't he? So it would be no wonder why he so hates to have to go back to be on his lonely own!
Sorry, I reread your first post and see that he isn't! Just a very cuddly boy!

Can you divert his attention by promising him a little treat upon his return to the cage, so he has something to look forward to?
 

2280CLAIRE

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That's a good idea, actually. I will definetly have to try that, thank you. He's such a little rascal...!
 
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