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CV26

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The boys are 11 weeks old and I'm already seeing relatively hefty dominance behaviour. Looking at the dominance guide I'm seeing amber signs for sure (loud teeth chattering, yawning etc) but then we've had 2 lunging/ flying tackle type incidents in the last 15 mins.

My gasp of shock each time was enough to spook them out of it and they've settled down again now. I'd put them down for floor time and although there is some soiled bedding in there, maybe theres also a bit too much new stuff and it's upset them. They're back to general pootling round and hay munching at the moment.

We have the divider in their Ferplast 160 we can use if needs be and my hubby is making a wooden block so it can go down the middle of the cage rather than just the 40cm portion as it was designed. I do have other housing options for long term too if it comes to it.

Is this a bad sign to be edging into red so young?
 

Siikibam

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Is one of them squeaking in submission or are they both teeth chattering and going for each other? You say flying tackles are they going for each other?

Doesn’t sound good. I would think about separating them for a day or two to calm down and then try again. But dividing a 160 cage doesn’t provide enough space for each of them.
 

CV26

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I think they're both teeth chattering, but there is some squeaking too.

Dash cornered Spud and was going in with head raised, body side on and blocking before Spud lunged back I think. And the second time I didnt see from my vantage point but my husband did and he said they went for each other - so I couldn't clearly see the instigator on that one and hubby cant tell the difference as they look very similar. Dash has done lots of yawning too..haven't seen Spud do that.

I know the Ferplast will not be a long term option but is it ok for a days chill out?
 

Piggies&buns

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Keep a close eye on things. Some time to chill out if necessary. They are becoming hormonal so seeing the change in behaviour is to be expected but it’s the warnings signs you need to keep an eye out If they aren’t compatible. I’d be concerned about them lunging at each other
Dividing it should be ok for a temporary separation - it should still give them approx 130 x 60 each (or a bit less given the internal measurements are always less)

Bonds In Trouble
 

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The boys are 11 weeks old and I'm already seeing relatively hefty dominance behaviour. Looking at the dominance guide I'm seeing amber signs for sure (loud teeth chattering, yawning etc) but then we've had 2 lunging/ flying tackle type incidents in the last 15 mins.

My gasp of shock each time was enough to spook them out of it and they've settled down again now. I'd put them down for floor time and although there is some soiled bedding in there, maybe theres also a bit too much new stuff and it's upset them. They're back to general pootling round and hay munching at the moment.

We have the divider in their Ferplast 160 we can use if needs be and my hubby is making a wooden block so it can go down the middle of the cage rather than just the 40cm portion as it was designed. I do have other housing options for long term too if it comes to it.

Is this a bad sign to be edging into red so young?
Hi and welcome

Unfortunately it doesn't look like a good character match if your boys can't settle down together in the 2 weeks it takes to establish a new group hierarchy in any new territory. Flying tackles are usually a VERY strongly worded 'stay out of my SPACE!' It looks very much like one of your boys is pushing for abject submission and not getting it. :(
Sadly most people buy shop piggies for their looks and not who they hang out with most or preferably consider adopting a stably bonded pair from one of our carefully vetted good welfare standard rescues. It is unfortunately a long de-bunked but constantly de-bunked myth that brothers will get on. :(

Please follow the tips at the end of this guide here because things are only going to get worse once the teenage hormones kick in. We have listed all possible options after a fall-out or bonding fail with their various pros and cons in the last chapter.
Boars: Teenage, Bullying, Fighting, Fall-outs And What Next?

The cage divider will work for now; 2x4 ft are the minimum space for singles while you work our out your longer term options and avenues with the link above. There are more options than you would think. Take the time to discuss the issue and pursue those you think might suit your long term ideas and possibilities best. It is worth not being lured into a knee jerk reaction when you are still very much upset. ;)
 

CV26

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Thanks everyone. I've noticed the teeth chattering for a good week or so, and there has been the odd head flick type attempt at a nip. But this is the first time I've seen proper lunges with menace. They're still in their floor time pen right now...I was about to say all peaceful but we've just had a moment of head bobbing and teeth baring...back to eating again but I'll keep an eye on them for now.

Wiebke - they are brothers from a hobby breeder. Unfortunately I had quite a poor experience with the 3 rescues I contacted so it was sort of a case of take these guys on knowing that I might have to deal with the outcome if needs be. I've had boars before but this is the first time I've felt concerned by what I'm seeing.
 

DougalandDiego

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Sorry to hear your boys are going through a hormonal stage. I completely sympathise as I’ve sought a lot of advice from the forum and would have gone insane if I didn’t have the support from members on here when my boys were going through their hormonal spikes. I hope they calm down for you!
 

DougalandDiego

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Maybe try filming the behaviour next time you see it and upload it to the forum? It’s easier for people to comment and give advice when they can see it themselves. Best of luck!
 

CV26

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Thank you. Frustratingly whenever I get my camera out they tend to spook and run off so even getting regular pictures has been a challenge. I'll see what I can do.

Feeling a bit upset right now...I was prepared for boar grumping in the coming months but a tussle at less than 12 weeks old feels rather ominous. 😔
 

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Maybe try filming the behaviour next time you see it and upload it to the forum? It’s easier for people to comment and give advice when they can see it themselves. Best of luck!
Since we don't have a video uploading facility (we are entirely run by voluntary member donations and this requires a lot more bandwidth), we recommend to upload any videos on a public setting elsewhere and then copy them into your post.

You generally know when things get really dodgy from the very different level of tension and intensity, especially when you have had previous boar experience. Unfortunately most breeder piggies are born to very stressed mothers and they inherit this high stress setting as their default, which in my own experience of adopting piggies from all kinds of backgrounds and situations does often make for a more difficult social life. It is very upsetting unfortunately, but try to focus on constructive solutions. An early fall out is very disappointing but there is a whole life after a fall-out - and at least you will be spared months of nail biting teenage antics... ;)

You could consider having them neutered when they are old enough and bonding them with a sow each for company. it is not a quick solution as you are looking at a wait of several months (4 months until neutering plus a 6 weeks post-op safety wait where they will have to live as next door neighbours) but if you are in the position of being able to provide space for two pairs in the long term, then this would be the most stable long term option for a happy life. Cross gender bonds are the most stable of all once you have got past the initial acceptance from the sows. If you can give us your general area if you decide to go down that way at some point, we may be able to recommend the best neutering vet for you.
Neutered / De-sexed Boars And Neutering Operations: Myths, Facts and Post-op Care
 

CV26

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I'll have a look, than you.

I do have some other questions...

- Hubby has remodelled the divider so they can go back in the Ferplast with their own space but still see each other. If they are still grumping majorly at each other in a bit how long should they stay divided in this space max before trying them together again? Only asking in terms of overnight issues, and I'm at work tomorrow so feeling nervous about unsupervised time.

- Vets visits - they're both seeing the vet at the moment for a URI...if the bond does eventually turn out to be broken then they'll need separate carriers...but in the shorter term if the seem settled again is the same carrier ok?
 

Wiebke

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I'll have a look, than you.

I do have some other questions...

- Hubby has remodelled the divider so they can go back in the Ferplast with their own space but still see each other. If they are still grumping majorly at each other in a bit how long should they stay divided in this space max before trying them together again? Only asking in terms of overnight issues, and I'm at work tomorrow so feeling nervous about unsupervised time.

- Vets visits - they're both seeing the vet at the moment for a URI...if the bond does eventually turn out to be broken then they'll need separate carriers...but in the shorter term if the seem settled again is the same carrier ok?
That is a difficult one. Personally I would prefer to use a cardboard box for the second boy in a pinch as being stressed in close quarters could cause another flare/overreaction and serious bites. But both boys not feeling top can of course contribute to the problems.

It rather looks to me like an unresolved dominance issue. Flying tackles in a pair that has been together since birth is not a fear-aggressive overreaction during bonding but a very strongly worded last warning that a party has reached the end of their tether.
 

VickiA

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I think if you’ve genuinely seen flying lunges then I would be calling it a day and making plans for them to live separately on a permanent basis.
 

CV26

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They're back at the vets on Wednesday so I've got time to get a second carrier or sort out a temporary but sturdy one to cover all bases.

All quiet right now and they're resting in their hideys in their play pen so they're still sharing the same space for now. It's been nearly 2 hours since their rumble. I didnt see the second incident but the way hubby described it is that they both definitely went for each other and had a scuffle before they came apart...either they chose to stop or hubby and I spooked them by reacting.

I'm going to leave them in their play pen until it's time for their next meds and then move them back into the main cage with divider in. They will still see each other but cant get to each other so at least there wont be the risk of bite wounds whilst they're unsupervised. I'm back working from home on Tuesday so can always try again with them together then.
 

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They're back at the vets on Wednesday so I've got time to get a second carrier or sort out a temporary but sturdy one to cover all bases.

All quiet right now and they're resting in their hideys in their play pen so they're still sharing the same space for now. It's been nearly 2 hours since their rumble. I didnt see the second incident but the way hubby described it is that they both definitely went for each other and had a scuffle before they came apart...either they chose to stop or hubby and I spooked them by reacting.

I'm going to leave them in their play pen until it's time for their next meds and then move them back into the main cage with divider in. They will still see each other but cant get to each other so at least there wont be the risk of bite wounds whilst they're unsupervised. I'm back working from home on Tuesday so can always try again with them together then.
All the best! It is always a very worrying and upsetting time. All you can do is play it by ear.
 

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I agree that it’s the times you’re not there that are the most stressful and leave you feeling anxious! Good luck and hope you make a decision you feel happy with!
 

CV26

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So they've been back out of their hideys to eat again. Dash yawned once and there was a little bit of tense eye contact at one point but nothing more. Back in separate hideys where they can see each other and they look fairly chilled right now - Dash is even lying more on his side rather than poised to react.

So the divider plan seems like a good bet as any. Allow them some chill time but with a level of contact, and then bring them together on Tuesday when I can react to any issues. Maybe they didnt like the play pen today as they felt (despite a little soiled bedding) that it was too new...although that's probably me just trying to make myself feel better as it did seem a pretty extreme reaction after all.

Time will tell. Thank you for all your support!
 

DougalandDiego

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Yes I’ve posted before now as unfortunately floor time sets my two boys off and they’re 15 months. Luckily they have a large c and c (3x5) which is being upgraded to a 3x6 next weekend and then I’ve got more grids coming to upgrade it even further as floor time was causing a lot of bickering and they both felt the need to re-establish the hierarchy when they got back in their cage despite trying all the tips on the forum.
I’m hoping as they get older they calm down which means we can try it again in the future. I hope Tuesday goes well but at least you can have them living as neighbours if they don’t. Let us know how you get on!
 

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You could get them neutered and get them a girl each? (It might be a bit expensive). I know how difficult it is with divided boys! Can they see eachother okay? (Sorry, I just briefly read this thread so sorry if I asked questions that have already been answered) but I hope all goes well :)
 
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