Boars Not Getting Along

mulderandscully

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I have 2 10-11 month old boars Mulder and Scully and they are not getting along. I have had them since they were 4 months old, even at that age it was clear Scully was the dominant pig, and I assumed most of their behaviour was harmless. Scully chases Mulder, Mulder is grumpy and rumbles a lot but it's Scully who is physically aggressive towards Mulder. Recently I've been finding scabs and patches of hair missing on Mulder, and he is significantly smaller than Scully and is not a healthy weight. I love them both very much and really do not want to separate them as I don't have the space for two guinea pig setups and will have to rehome one, but of course I will if I have to. Any advice on what to do with them would be appreciated. Thank you.
 

Piggies&buns

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How big is their cage? Do you have multiple food bowls and water bottles? Do you have open ended hideys so that no piggy can get cornered?
The problem is, if injuries are now being caused, then even increasing cage size may be too late as their relationship may has now broken down too far and separation is the only route you can take. Could they be housed vertically ie stacking cages?
 

Swissgreys

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Welcome to the Forum and sorry to hear your boys are not geting along.

A good place to start would be with the guides about Boars listed here:
Behaviour, Bonding & Bereavement Guides

They will offer some excellent advice on how to spot and deal with problems.

How big is Mulder and Scully's cage and do they have 2 of everything?
How much does Mulder weigh and is he loosing weight?

Of course if they are fighting and one piggy is suffering then it is of course best to split them, but scabs and small patches of hair loss can also be due to mites or otehr treatable skin conditions.
So maybe try and see if there are other things you can do first.
 

Wiebke

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I have 2 10-11 month old boars Mulder and Scully and they are not getting along. I have had them since they were 4 months old, even at that age it was clear Scully was the dominant pig, and I assumed most of their behaviour was harmless. Scully chases Mulder, Mulder is grumpy and rumbles a lot but it's Scully who is physically aggressive towards Mulder. Recently I've been finding scabs and patches of hair missing on Mulder, and he is significantly smaller than Scully and is not a healthy weight. I love them both very much and really do not want to separate them as I don't have the space for two guinea pig setups and will have to rehome one, but of course I will if I have to. Any advice on what to do with them would be appreciated. Thank you.
Hi and welcome!

Your boys are still in one of the trickiest stages of the teenage months; that is the time when it decides whether their personalities are compatible or not. Sadly baby shop boys are not bought with an eye on whether they are best friends or not (even though it is much more important).

Please take the time to read our guide; you will find it very helpful. It talks you through all aspects.
Boars: Teenage, Bullying, Fighting, Fall-outs And What Next?

If there have been bloody bites and your vet agrees that they are not caused by mange mites, then a separation would be better.
 

mulderandscully

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Welcome to the Forum and sorry to hear your boys are not geting along.

A good place to start would be with the guides about Boars listed here:
Behaviour, Bonding & Bereavement Guides

They will offer some excellent advice on how to spot and deal with problems.

How big is Mulder and Scully's cage and do they have 2 of everything?
How much does Mulder weigh and is he loosing weight?

Of course if they are fighting and one piggy is suffering then it is of course best to split them, but scabs and small patches of hair loss can also be due to mites or otehr treatable skin conditions.
So maybe try and see if there are other things you can do first.
Thank you, I'm not sure of the dimensions of their hutch but it is very large, plus they spend most days on the grass outside in a big run so I don't think it's an issue of space. However they don't have separate food bowls or water bottles so I will try this, thank you.

Mulder weighs 921 grams so he's still technically within a healthy weight range (I thought he weighed less when I posted the thread sorry for the misinformation!) but he used to weight around 950 so I will be keeping an eye on him.

True but I don't think it could be mites as the scabs and hair loss are only on Mulder.

Thank you for the advice :)
 

mulderandscully

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How big is their cage? Do you have multiple food bowls and water bottles? Do you have open ended hideys so that no piggy can get cornered?
The problem is, if injuries are now being caused, then even increasing cage size may be too late as their relationship may has now broken down too far and separation is the only route you can take. Could they be housed vertically ie stacking cages?
They have plenty of hideys but not separate food bowls or water bottles so I will try this. They have a large hutch so I don't think space is the issue. But I'll try the two of everything thing and see how it goes, thank you :)
 

Wiebke

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Thank you, I'm not sure of the dimensions of their hutch but it is very large, plus they spend most days on the grass outside in a big run so I don't think it's an issue of space. However they don't have separate food bowls or water bottles so I will try this, thank you.

Mulder weighs 921 grams so he's still technically within a healthy weight range but he used to weight around 950 so I will be keeping an eye on him.

True but I don't think it could be mites as the scabs and hair loss are only on Mulder.

Thank you for the advice :)
We can only go by your word; it is important for us to close out any possible angles you may not be aware of. ;(
Please be aware that the daily variance in weight is 30-40g between a full/empty bladder and digestive tract. With outdoors piggies you also have to take sudden major changes in temperature into account.

Are you in the UK or in Australia?
Please be aware that guinea pigs in either country are not hardy and need extra protection in winter as well as during heatwaves.
Cold Weather Care For Guinea Pigs
Hot weather management and heat strokes
 

Wiebke

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They have plenty of hideys but not separate food bowls or water bottles so I will try this. They have a large hutch so I don't think space is the issue. But I'll try the two of everything thing and see how it goes, thank you :)
If you suspect fights and bullying, please conduct a trial separation. It is the boy you are worried about whose reaction is the crucial one - if he is suddenly much happier and perkier when away from his mate, then you have your answer.
 

mulderandscully

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We can only go by your word; it is important for us to close out any possible angles you may not be aware of. ;(
Please be aware that the daily variance in weight is 30-40g between a full/empty bladder and digestive tract. With outdoors piggies you also have to take sudden major changes in temperature into account.

Are you in the UK or in Australia?
Please be aware that guinea pigs in either country are not hardy and need extra protection in winter as well as during heatwaves.
Cold Weather Care For Guinea Pigs
Hot weather management and heat strokes
Thanks again :)

Oh I didn't know that thank you! Yes I am from Scotland so the cold weather could account for this, and I've only just this week moved their hutch inside.
 

mulderandscully

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If you suspect fights and bullying, please conduct a trial separation. It is the boy you are worried about whose reaction is the crucial one - if he is suddenly much happier and perkier when away from his mate, then you have your answer.
I have only done short term separation (about 20 mins at a time) and both pigs have squeaked for eachother and seemed a bit lost. I will try separating them for longer though and see how it goes.
 

Wiebke

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I have only done short term separation (about 20 mins at a time) and both pigs have squeaked for eachother and seemed a bit lost. I will try separating them for longer though and see how it goes.
All the best! All you can do is trying to evaluate the situation and try to find out whether they want to still be together or not.
 

Piggies&buns

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They will call for each other but it doesn’t mean that being together is the right thing.
A trial separation as wiebke suggested is obviously a good idea, but don’t keep separating and then putting them back together because it causes them stress. Separate, observe the timid one, make the decision. Wiebke can advise on what is the best amount of time for the separation to be able to see a true change in behaviour.
 

mulderandscully

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They will call for each other but it doesn’t mean that being together is the right thing.
A trial separation as wiebke suggested is obviously a good idea, but don’t keep separating and then putting them back together because it causes them stress. Separate, observe the timid one, make the decision. Wiebke can advise on what is the best amount of time for the separation to be able to see a true change in behaviour.
Thank you this is really helpful, I'll try the longer separation and see if Mulder improves any :)
 
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