Bonding with squealing

Belfadin

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Bonding 2 piggy at the moment, there was ear licking and some nose contact but nothing alarming. They moved to fresh cage after a few hours and ear lick noticed earlier.
Every so often there’s a bit of close contact, no biting but the less dominant one squeals as he goes to a hidey or in the hay. There was a nose away from the pellet bowl, both have been eating and drinking from water bottle. The submissive piggy drank quite a lot earlier. He arrived yesterday but spent the night on his own and didn’t eat or drink much so now I know he getting water.

couple hours ago I observed them lying next to each other for at least half an hour, on top of a cardboard made hidey.

Anything to be concerned with with underpiggy squealing every so often? with no obvious aggression to him other than actions what mentioned.
 

Siikibam

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Sounds normal. It’s just squeaking in submission and telling top pig he knows his position. Make sure they have two of everything - bowl etc. And put them at least one body length apart. Scatter feeding is even better.
 

mulderandscully

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Glad I found this as I have just introduced 2 new pigs to my current 2 and have been having the exact same concern! I introduced 2 new females to my neutered boar and sow pair and my original sow was not too happy to begin with... things have settled, but the younger of the 2 piggies I have noticed will squeal when another pig gets too close to her. Boo, my big bossy sow, will chase her around showing her who's boss (theres lots of establishing dominance going on still!) and poor new baby will squeal her little head off. I've health checked her, made sure there's no biting etc, and I can't find anything to suggest she's in pain. She only makes this noise when another pig chases or gets too close, which makes me think she is just scared. She isn't interacting with the others the same way the other new girl is and she's very little and shy. If squealing is happening during bonding for you as well, that makes me think that maybe this is a natural reaction for some piggies. Wishing you the best, I hope the bonding is a success ❤
 

Siikibam

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She’s not scared, it’s normal. The hierarchy can take a further two weeks to sort out/settle. Bonding is Jus the beginning. Babies can also be more dramatic! Hopefully she will come out of her shell soon.
 

mulderandscully

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She’s not scared, it’s normal. The hierarchy can take a further two weeks to sort out/settle. Bonding is Jus the beginning. Babies can also be more dramatic! Hopefully she will come out of her shell soon.
Thanks so much! This is very helpful 😁 I'm glad to hear it's normal, I wasn't too worried as compared to some of attempts at bonding boys, this is nothing 🤣
 

Belfadin

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Thanks I think the squealing because of the pitch made me wonder. Looks like a few of us have an exciting night of piggy relationship building to enjoy😊
 

Belfadin

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More squealing today, there are 2 hidey but in one underpiggy was resting and top pig goes on gives him a nose nudge to the side, this is where there was squealing and then it was quieter but continuous sounding like I submit I submit, please let me be. It was almost like he was crying. They don’t want to use the other hidey. Is all quiet now. Have seen a few of them it’s like he is charged and butt just with the nose. No nipping or anything.

Food has been spread throughout and both have been munching hay and pellets and taking on water

Hoping the dominant guy realizes he has his brother into submission and they will be happy together and the squealing will stop as they start to know their roles

I’m trying to name them too, bit it is taking me a bit to decide. One is smooth light ginger all one colour and the other is mostly white with some light brown
 

Piggies&buns

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More squealing today, there are 2 hidey but in one underpiggy was resting and top pig goes on gives him a nose nudge to the side, this is where there was squealing and then it was quieter but continuous sounding like I submit I submit, please let me be. It was almost like he was crying. They don’t want to use the other hidey. Is all quiet now. Have seen a few of them it’s like he is charged and butt just with the nose. No nipping or anything.

Food has been spread throughout and both have been munching hay and pellets and taking on water

Hoping the dominant guy realizes he has his brother into submission and they will be happy together and the squealing will stop as they start to know their roles

I’m trying to name them too, bit it is taking me a bit to decide. One is smooth light ginger all one colour and the other is mostly white with some light brown
the dominant piggy will always have the pick of the best hidey. If there is a particular hidey which causes problems, then it can sometimes be the best decision to remove that hidey altogether. I prefer to have more hideys than piggies - my boar pair has about four to six hideys at any one time so that there aren’t arguments over any particular one.
The other important factor is that all hideys should ideally have two exits. Don’t use enclosed hideys as it can cause an argument and defensive injuries if a piggy gets cornered in a hidey with no other way out.
 

Wiebke

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Please take the time to read and watch our very detailed comprehensive step-by-step bonding guides below, which also covers the post-intro dominance phase that lasts on average about 2 weeks until the new hierarchical group is established; many new owners are not aware just how complex and long a bonding actually is and are surprised/upset by the attendant drama.

Do not introduce houses with just one exit until after this has happened. Locking an underpiggy in or chucking it out of any prime estate is part of establishing and affirming dominance. Things are a lot easier if you allow the underpiggy to move away through a second exit and not get trapped. You also want to have at least as many huts with two exits as as there are piggies, either well apart or in parallel so the dominant piggy cannot physically control them both at the same time. Sprinkle feed around the cage rather then serve veg and pellets in bowls (or serve in two bowls at least a body length apart from each other). Make sure that you have water bottles in two different places and that hay access (which makes 80% of what a piggy eats in a day) cannot be blocked.

Bonding and Interaction: Illustrated social behaviours and bonding dynamics
Dominance Behaviours In Guinea Pigs
 

Belfadin

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lots of very detailed information thank you. Moved from topic to topic. Granted it did get me thinking about more detailed care for boar such as the cleaning of the sack and checking the penis for debris regularly

Have edited the home layout, hidey s opposite ends and cut second exit into them, spread foot out and different hay piles.
The underpiggy is a lot smaller and is only nearly 9 weeks old so I was feeling for him a bit with the squealing especially when it can be quite high pitched even though it’s part of the process, the desire to hold and comfort him was strong although I resisted. I think before he was getting blocked in the house l and now he can whiz out the side and both home are also surrounded by hay to burrow in.

It is comforting though that throughout today there have been periods of a few hours where both have been at rest, even in same house and all quiet.
 

Wiebke

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lots of very detailed information thank you. Moved from topic to topic. Granted it did get me thinking about more detailed care for boar such as the cleaning of the sack and checking the penis for debris regularly

Have edited the home layout, hidey s opposite ends and cut second exit into them, spread foot out and different hay piles.
The underpiggy is a lot smaller and is only nearly 9 weeks old so I was feeling for him a bit with the squealing especially when it can be quite high pitched even though it’s part of the process, the desire to hold and comfort him was strong although I resisted. I think before he was getting blocked in the house l and now he can whiz out the side and both home are also surrounded by hay to burrow in.

It is comforting though that throughout today there have been periods of a few hours where both have been at rest, even in same house and all quiet.
You are most likely over the worst of the dominance by now. The submission screaming can pick up again towards the end of the two weeks when it is your baby's turn to say just how much he allows himself being pushed. The screaming is a very effective 'Don't be mean; I am no rival of yours!' All drama (and babies are very good at drama) but actually no pain.

You may find our New Owners information collection very helpful. We have compiled the most helpful guides that address the most often asked questions and concerns with care advice, learning to understand your guinea pigs and learning to spot what is normal and not etc. Unlike a book, we can update and extend our guide collection at need. The guides are as practical, step-by-step and precise as we have been able to make them; no glossing over the tricky little details that can trip up inexperienced owners! The collection contains a boar care guide, too; with pictures.
It is worth bookmarking, browsing, reading and re-reading as you will take different things from the guides with different levels of experience: Getting Started - New Owners' Most Helpful Guides
 

Belfadin

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more info in this forum than I ever have seen, so much knowledge to absorb

today They both lay next to each other in a hidey earlier at least an hour. I was trying to find observe where they were as the little guy’s body was obscured.
You’re right I think the worst is over. There’s been a little bit of dominance today, but the squealing has dropped off. both have been coming out of hiding more to explore and I even saw some jumping and quick changes of direction.

just put an assortment of veggies in and have seen them both Eating a decent Amount.

experience so far:
the guineas eat healthier than I ever have
They don’t smell at all
Even moving the bag of a delivery package caused some wheeking, always hungry never full
One pig is a really loud drinker while the other is pretty quiet
Top boar seems more comfortable with me, staying in cage when I am doing things near by, is definitely happy he has a mate to dominate
I love how they go from curled up and looking small to walking around and suddenly look like they have grown into a sausage
They do make some cute noises as they move about
Who needs human contact when you guineas, or any pet tbh
 

Betsy

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experience so far:
the guineas eat healthier than I ever have
They don’t smell at all
Even moving the bag of a delivery package caused some wheeking, always hungry never full
One pig is a really loud drinker while the other is pretty quiet
Top boar seems more comfortable with me, staying in cage when I am doing things near by, is definitely happy he has a mate to dominate
I love how they go from curled up and looking small to walking around and suddenly look like they have grown into a sausage
They do make some cute noises as they move about
Who needs human contact when you guineas, or any pet tbh
If you don't want the wheak chorus to start, you'll soon learn to do the following very quietly:-
Eat a packet of crisps
Open the fridge
Chop veg
Tiptoe past their cage ......
 

Belfadin

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There has been chasing and bum licking overnight and this morning, the underpiggy keeps running away through the hideous and around the cage even on top of them yet chased and voices his displeasure by moaning and then comes the high pitched squeal. They settle and it starts again after some time has passed. Although there seems to be peace now.

Seems they have moved on from nose nudging to the other end now!
They have been together 3.5 days so still very early
 

Siikibam

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All normal. Remember it takes up to two weeks to establish the hierarchy.
 

Belfadin

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As I worked yesterday they have been pretty quiet and not making as much noise. The squealing has really reduced. Mostly hearing them talking to each other now.

top pig is definitely enjoying ruling the roost, started wheeking louder and louder15 minutes ago after I refreshed the water. As top pig I did pick him up and held briefly then just checking his body out make sure looked all ok and then transferred to towel so I could clean his house inside and put some fresh bedding down.Returned him and added more hay and nuggets and seem to have 2 happy pigs.
I didn’t pick up the younger one, he is too shy and wriggly. He going to be a get into a tube and pick up pig for a bit.
They have started to get used to there being 2 hidey too, so they both have a preference for where they relax
 

Piggies&buns

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Sounds like they are settling in now.

don’t refresh pellets throughout the day - they should only have one tablespoon per pig per day. Once they have eaten their tablespoon, it can sometimes be best to remove the pellet bowl and don’t give it back until the next day
 

Belfadin

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thanks and will be sure to, mainly because of wheeking I put more in thinking they were hungry for more. But even now one has been wheeking bit there’s plenty of hay and still some pellets left. Plenty of water.

trying to figure out what he is asking for it maybe just wants some more attention. Although has just stopped now When I made a sandwich for lunch even taking the bread out of its packaging wheek wheek wheek. don’t want to give treats every wheek or I’ll end up with a couple of porkers.

It’s only from the one, the other is so silent he is so small and was in the corner earlier trying to climb onto a house but couldn’t make it. he looked like a little mouse.
They’re still so tiny. Even when I held just the elder guinea earlier when I checked him over he fit on just one hand, his fur so soft and to feel his warmth it was a nice moment. Was stroking on top and near ears. After watching the videos to try to be saying I like you and keeping on his level to hopefully put at ease. Most videos I’ve seen has always been adult guineas so Theres a big difference in size. Going to be exciting to watch them grow and note the weight gains.
 

Piggies&buns

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They get to know that if they wheek and then you will give them food! Dont give in! stick to a normal feeding schedule and as they have hay constantly, they aren’t hungry.
What I do is give my piggies their pellets first thing in the morning. They then get half an hour to eat their tablespoon portion each and then I remove the bowl whether there are pellets left or not. they then have hay for the rest of the day until they get their veg in the evening.
 

Belfadin

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I am happy the piggies have seemed to successfully bonded, there has been no more butt sniffing chasing or submission squealing for a day now. Just the usual little chatty squeaks as they go about their business.
They have been lying down together as well as separately and even the underpiggy is coming out of his shell. Exploring more and not confining himself to a hidey for as long. They had even tipped one cardboard box the other side up
Been around cage the elder pig has really been stretching his legs doing laps around the cage and settling in for a drink between exercise.
I have just put in even more fresh hay and they’ve been happily chomping that as well as dragging it everywhere.
Thanks for all the comments, advice and guidance. Here’s to keeping these 2 pigs happy and healthy.
I hope at some point to get some photos which I will put into the photo forum when I move them out of residence for a deep clean
 
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