Bonding and general help

Brona

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Hi here’s your essay warning but we appreciate any help!
We just need some help. My girlfriend and I have had pigs as kids, in particular my girlfriend who’s last pig before we got together lived for 11 years! So when we moved in together we wanted to get some piggies. We lived in a flat at the time so we decided to have them as indoor piggies. So my girlfriend fell in love with a pig at Pets at home so we got 2 young boars (Nilla and Rupert) from there and we know Pets at home is not great but she fell deeply in love with this pig.
We got a 130cm cage for them and used hay for bedding to begin with. They had (and the boar remaining still does) veggies every evening. Mainly a mix of kale, lettuce, pepper, carrots, broccoli, cucumber rarely and apple and grapes as treats. Always has access to fresh water, hay and nuggets mixed in with some muesli. When they were a year old we changed to saw dust as bedding but a month later Nilla started getting sniffles so took him to the vet and got antibiotics then a month later got the sniffles again so got more antibiotics and the vet suggested try changing the bedding so we changed to fleeces and that’s what we still use now.

Nilla got a couple of UTIs over the next year and a bit which we got treated as soon as we noticed. We didn’t weigh them as much as we should have done but we did now and again and when they were about 2 and a half we noticed Rupert had lost a little weight and then he suddenly stopped eating as much so we took him to the vets and they didn’t really know so gave us antibiotics and painkillers and he only ate when the painkillers kicked in. He continued losing weight so we took him back to the vet and they gave us recovery food which we tried to give him as much as the vet said but often he wouldn’t take it all. Rupert then sadly went downhill and couldn’t stand up by himself so we took him to the vets as an emergency but by the time we got him there he was all but gone so the vet said best to put him to sleep 😔 we were absolutely devastated but reading on here we knew how to check Nilla was okay with the loss of Rupert. So a week and a bit later we got Sydney a young boar to bond with Nilla and they got on just fine. We googled if we couldve done anymore to save Rupert but we couldn’t see anything.

Nilla was always a big pig at 1.3kg at his biggest in the summer but then dropped over a few months to 1.1kg early this year and just put it down to the season. 2 months ago we noticed that he seemed to be always cold and just put it down to be colder so we got him some heat pads which he loved. But about a month ago we noticed blood in his urine so we took him immediately to the vets and he weighed just over 1kg then so they said it’s most likely a bad UTI so gave us some antibiotics. We said that he was drinking more and the vet said it’s most likely because he’s trying to flush his system. So we were worried it was because of hard water from the tap so they started having bottled water and we spot cleaned more often and kept changing the blanket once a week. After 3 weeks he lost a little more weight but was drinking and eating happily and we hadn’t seen anymore blood but a couple days after this there was blood again in the cage. So we took him to the vets again and they said if the antibiotics don’t work this time we’ll do urine sample testing. He had painkillers this time to as he was just sitting in the pigloo with his hair fluffed up so we thought he was in pain. He finished the course of antibiotics and appeared to be more lively and eating better but he was now down to just under 900 grams, we bought a 2x4 C&C cage hoping more room would help him get better. Then Monday night this week we came back from work and noticed blood back on the blanket and him not at all himself so we agreed we’d call the vets first thing in the morning. We gave them their veggies as normal and he didn’t touch a thing so we got him out and gave him some painkiller which was left over and we managed to get him to eat some lettuce. So we put him back and he flopped in his pod and we hoped the food he ate would keep him strong enough until the morning so we could take him in on an emergency appointment that morning. However we woke to find he passed in his sleep, we think it was bladder stones 😔
Were both still absolutely devastated but we can’t help but feel we’re doing something wrong. So we’ve now got Syndey who is a 9 month year old boar by himself who is stilling eating well and seems to be okay. We just want to know if we’re using the wrong bedding or giving them too many veggies or something else we’re doing as 3 years wasn’t enough time to spend with our sweet boys and we want as many as possible with Syndey and any other piggies we may get.

Which brings me on to the fact we need to get Syndey a friend and we don’t know what to do. We contacted our local rescue but they don’t have any suitable pigs at the moment. Also Syndey is a very energetic pig so we want to get the right type of friend for him. Pets at home have a young boar up for adoption near us because he had a cataract which was treated but he’s quite skittish like Syndey, so we don’t know if A. he’s going to be the right match for Syndey and B. That he doesn’t have any other health issues that’s gunna break our heart in the future. Our only option at the moment seems to be Pets at home again which we obviously want to avoid.

Any advise/reassurance on anything would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks for taking the time to read this.
 

Wiebke

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Hi here’s your essay warning but we appreciate any help!
We just need some help. My girlfriend and I have had pigs as kids, in particular my girlfriend who’s last pig before we got together lived for 11 years! So when we moved in together we wanted to get some piggies. We lived in a flat at the time so we decided to have them as indoor piggies. So my girlfriend fell in love with a pig at Pets at home so we got 2 young boars (Nilla and Rupert) from there and we know Pets at home is not great but she fell deeply in love with this pig.
We got a 130cm cage for them and used hay for bedding to begin with. They had (and the boar remaining still does) veggies every evening. Mainly a mix of kale, lettuce, pepper, carrots, broccoli, cucumber rarely and apple and grapes as treats. Always has access to fresh water, hay and nuggets mixed in with some muesli. When they were a year old we changed to saw dust as bedding but a month later Nilla started getting sniffles so took him to the vet and got antibiotics then a month later got the sniffles again so got more antibiotics and the vet suggested try changing the bedding so we changed to fleeces and that’s what we still use now.

Nilla got a couple of UTIs over the next year and a bit which we got treated as soon as we noticed. We didn’t weigh them as much as we should have done but we did now and again and when they were about 2 and a half we noticed Rupert had lost a little weight and then he suddenly stopped eating as much so we took him to the vets and they didn’t really know so gave us antibiotics and painkillers and he only ate when the painkillers kicked in. He continued losing weight so we took him back to the vet and they gave us recovery food which we tried to give him as much as the vet said but often he wouldn’t take it all. Rupert then sadly went downhill and couldn’t stand up by himself so we took him to the vets as an emergency but by the time we got him there he was all but gone so the vet said best to put him to sleep 😔 we were absolutely devastated but reading on here we knew how to check Nilla was okay with the loss of Rupert. So a week and a bit later we got Sydney a young boar to bond with Nilla and they got on just fine. We googled if we couldve done anymore to save Rupert but we couldn’t see anything.

Nilla was always a big pig at 1.3kg at his biggest in the summer but then dropped over a few months to 1.1kg early this year and just put it down to the season. 2 months ago we noticed that he seemed to be always cold and just put it down to be colder so we got him some heat pads which he loved. But about a month ago we noticed blood in his urine so we took him immediately to the vets and he weighed just over 1kg then so they said it’s most likely a bad UTI so gave us some antibiotics. We said that he was drinking more and the vet said it’s most likely because he’s trying to flush his system. So we were worried it was because of hard water from the tap so they started having bottled water and we spot cleaned more often and kept changing the blanket once a week. After 3 weeks he lost a little more weight but was drinking and eating happily and we hadn’t seen anymore blood but a couple days after this there was blood again in the cage. So we took him to the vets again and they said if the antibiotics don’t work this time we’ll do urine sample testing. He had painkillers this time to as he was just sitting in the pigloo with his hair fluffed up so we thought he was in pain. He finished the course of antibiotics and appeared to be more lively and eating better but he was now down to just under 900 grams, we bought a 2x4 C&C cage hoping more room would help him get better. Then Monday night this week we came back from work and noticed blood back on the blanket and him not at all himself so we agreed we’d call the vets first thing in the morning. We gave them their veggies as normal and he didn’t touch a thing so we got him out and gave him some painkiller which was left over and we managed to get him to eat some lettuce. So we put him back and he flopped in his pod and we hoped the food he ate would keep him strong enough until the morning so we could take him in on an emergency appointment that morning. However we woke to find he passed in his sleep, we think it was bladder stones 😔
Were both still absolutely devastated but we can’t help but feel we’re doing something wrong. So we’ve now got Syndey who is a 9 month year old boar by himself who is stilling eating well and seems to be okay. We just want to know if we’re using the wrong bedding or giving them too many veggies or something else we’re doing as 3 years wasn’t enough time to spend with our sweet boys and we want as many as possible with Syndey and any other piggies we may get.

Which brings me on to the fact we need to get Syndey a friend and we don’t know what to do. We contacted our local rescue but they don’t have any suitable pigs at the moment. Also Syndey is a very energetic pig so we want to get the right type of friend for him. Pets at home have a young boar up for adoption near us because he had a cataract which was treated but he’s quite skittish like Syndey, so we don’t know if A. he’s going to be the right match for Syndey and B. That he doesn’t have any other health issues that’s gunna break our heart in the future. Our only option at the moment seems to be Pets at home again which we obviously want to avoid.

Any advise/reassurance on anything would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks for taking the time to read this.
Hi and welcome

I am very sorry about your losses! you are welcome to post a tribute to all your piggies in our Rainbow Bridge section if you wish to.

Please contact Little Pip's Guinea Pig Rehoming in Buddleigh Salterton and/or Norman Gorman Guinea Pig Sanctuary near Liskeard. If you are in North Devon, the Littlest Rescue in Bristol may be closest.
Little Pip's offer residential bonding. Sydney will go on a holiday and will be introduced to up three suitable companions. Any successful bond will be stress tested before Sydney comes home with a full bonded companion. It is not as quick and there may be a waiting list, but it is by far the least stressful and best way of allowing Sydney to choose his new mate and to make sure that they really like each other and are personality compatible, even if it involves some travel and is not the fastest method - but it is the safest. Residential bonding is the Rolls Royce of boar dating and is not quick, but any resulting boar bond is as stable as any sow bond. Because it is very time consuming, only a few rescues can offer it. If you can get to one of them, please do!
Molly Gorman is also very careful with bonding boars, but she runs a smaller outfit and does not always have adoptable singles in rescue.

All rescues on our list have been carefully vetted and are run to a good standard at all stages; you and Sydney will be in safe hands with any of them.
Recommended Guinea Pig Rescues
 
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