Guinea Pig Died, New Friend For His Brother?

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geraltofrivia

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at the end of christmas break one of my guinea pigs suddenly died :( its taken a few weeks for me to process and move past it but I'm mostly okay now. my guinea pig is named haytham (like the assassin’s creed character!) and he and his brother have been together for all their lives (3 years!). now that his brother is gone I'm wondering about getting a new friend for haytham.

the thing is that haytham’s brother had been a bit of a bully and would chase him around, steal food, climb all over him, etc.

since his bro died, haythams seemed less stressed and more organized. (he is a much tider pig than his brother was: doesnt knock over the food dish on purpose and poops in little piles rather than everywhere).

its been over a month and half since arno died and ive noticed these past couple of days haytham isnt eating as much. like he loves food, and still asks for it, but seems a bit disinterested in couple things he usually likes. for example i gave him some carrot today and yesterday and usually he would have devoured it, but he just kind of nibbled at it and i had to throw the leftovers out so i didnt go bad.

he still is eating hay, pellets and leafy greens fine tho!

I'm just worried that he’s starting to get lonely. a friend of mine offered to have a piggie play date sometime soon so maybe that would help. ive been spending as much time as i can with him and when I'm out i try to leave him in my mom's room (i have a play pen that we set up in there) so that hes not in a silent room for hours.

I'm just worried that a new piggie would stress him out or start bullying him. he hasnt really been around any other pigs since i got him and his brother together.

so just a few questions if i look into a new cage mate, should i get a younger or older piggie if haytham is 3 years old? how much younger or older? would a spayed female be better than another boar if i can find one? (i wouldnt be able to pay to spay one so it would already have to be)? and what do i do if he ends up being bullied again?

sorry this is long and probably has mistakes, its nearly 2am!
any advice would be much appreciated
 
D

DM030819

If you find a good guinea pig rescue they will let Haytham choose his own buddy, they call it boar dating.

It all depends on personality really rather than age.

I know from asking around that finding spayed females is really hard unfortunately as it's such a tricky surgery.
 

Lady Kelly

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Females are only generally spayed as a medical necessity. I have had one pig spayed in the past as a bit of an emergency op (she only went in for a scan) because of very prominent ovarian cysts that my vet felt needed acting on very quickly. They do occasionally come up in rescues but they are a bit like a needle in a haystack, you have to be extremely lucky to find one.

I would recommend against playdates with your friends piggy too. Everytime I pig is put with another it starts off the dominance behaviour, for the sake of maybe a couple of hours together I think it would be unfair on both piggies to put them through this stress unnecessarily. As Jaycey has said a good rescue will be able to boar date which will help with the bonding process and make sure that you end up with two well suited piggies so you shouldn't face bullying behaviour etc. The other plus side is that if a problem does come up the rescue will continue to offer you support. Try using the forums rescue locator in the top menu bar
 

Wiebke

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at the end of christmas break one of my guinea pigs suddenly died :( its taken a few weeks for me to process and move past it but I'm mostly okay now. my guinea pig is named haytham (like the assassin’s creed character!) and he and his brother have been together for all their lives (3 years!). now that his brother is gone I'm wondering about getting a new friend for haytham.

the thing is that haytham’s brother had been a bit of a bully and would chase him around, steal food, climb all over him, etc.

since his bro died, haythams seemed less stressed and more organized. (he is a much tider pig than his brother was: doesnt knock over the food dish on purpose and poops in little piles rather than everywhere).

its been over a month and half since arno died and ive noticed these past couple of days haytham isnt eating as much. like he loves food, and still asks for it, but seems a bit disinterested in couple things he usually likes. for example i gave him some carrot today and yesterday and usually he would have devoured it, but he just kind of nibbled at it and i had to throw the leftovers out so i didnt go bad.

he still is eating hay, pellets and leafy greens fine tho!

I'm just worried that he’s starting to get lonely. a friend of mine offered to have a piggie play date sometime soon so maybe that would help. ive been spending as much time as i can with him and when I'm out i try to leave him in my mom's room (i have a play pen that we set up in there) so that hes not in a silent room for hours.

I'm just worried that a new piggie would stress him out or start bullying him. he hasnt really been around any other pigs since i got him and his brother together.

so just a few questions if i look into a new cage mate, should i get a younger or older piggie if haytham is 3 years old? how much younger or older? would a spayed female be better than another boar if i can find one? (i wouldnt be able to pay to spay one so it would already have to be)? and what do i do if he ends up being bullied again?

sorry this is long and probably has mistakes, its nearly 2am!
any advice would be much appreciated
Hi and welcome!

Please have Haytham vet checked, to make sure that you are not overlooking an emerging health issue. Start monitoring his weight daily at the same time in the feeding cycle instead of the usual weekly, and start topping him up with syringe feed. Complete Syringe Feeding Guide

If that is not the case, it would be great if you could get to a good rescue that offers boar dating at the rescue under expert supervision to make sure that the boys are character matched and that they like each other for a successful bond. Age is not a concern; the key to any happy guinea pig bond is compatibility. A rescue can help you to find another laid back/submissive boy to see whether Haytham is happy with him, as they know the personalities of the piggies in their charge best.

Sadly, spayed sows are about as rare as gold dust because the operation is much riskier and much more invasive/riskier than a neuter. However, Haytham is not too old for a neutering operation himself if you have either a general vet with lots of experience in neutering or a specialist with practice in small furries operations within your reach. You would have to factor in a 6 weeks post-op wait to make sure that he is 100% safe to go with one sow or a bonded couple of sows. My Tegan is living proof that over 5 weeks post-op boars (not one of mine, by the way) can fire live rounds as late as that!

As we have members from all over the world, you can really help us if you please added your country, state/province or UK county to your details, so we can point you in the right direction and are always able to tailor any advice to what is relevant and available for you straight away. Click on your username on the top, then go to personal details and scroll down to location. This makes it appear below your username in every post you make. Thank you!
 

Lynette.i

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Sorry to jump on your post. I adopted 3 guinea pigs last spring we were told they were from the same litter all female and about 4 years.
We sadly list one around the autumn but the other two we pronounced fit and healthy. Sunday we lost a second one we have bought the remaining pig onto the main part of the house for company. She is eating and drinking fine just seems very sad. She is happy just sitting on a lap. I was wondering due to her age if introducing a mate was a good idea?
 

Red Star

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The same thing happened to me a few months ago. Agent Nibbles' cagemate passed away, and at first he seemed okya, but then he started ignoring his hay, not eating his pellets, etc. etc. He lost some weight, even got sick a little after, too.

And now that we have new piggies, he's back to his normal self, even though we haven't officially introduced them yet (he can hear them, and I think that alone perked him back up!).

What I've read on the internet is that its best to get a youngster of the same gender when introducing new piggies. But if you're somewhere that you can take him on a boar date to judge how well they mesh, then that sounds like it'd be the best plan. :) I'm not really sure that's an option here in the States, but it sounds fantastic.

Best of luck!
 

Red Star

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Sorry to jump on your post. I adopted 3 guinea pigs last spring we were told they were from the same litter all female and about 4 years.
We sadly list one around the autumn but the other two we pronounced fit and healthy. Sunday we lost a second one we have bought the remaining pig onto the main part of the house for company. She is eating and drinking fine just seems very sad. She is happy just sitting on a lap. I was wondering due to her age if introducing a mate was a good idea?
From what I hear, female guinea pigs are much easier to introduce to each other than males. And they live happiest in pairs. :)
 
D

DM030819

Sorry to jump on your post. I adopted 3 guinea pigs last spring we were told they were from the same litter all female and about 4 years.
We sadly list one around the autumn but the other two we pronounced fit and healthy. Sunday we lost a second one we have bought the remaining pig onto the main part of the house for company. She is eating and drinking fine just seems very sad. She is happy just sitting on a lap. I was wondering due to her age if introducing a mate was a good idea?
Yep. My 5.5 year old boar happily accepted a new friend. It really gave him a new lease of life.
 

geraltofrivia

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thanks for the information and support everyone! sorry for the late response, i just wanted to take a few days to moniter my piggie, look into guinea pigs up for adoption in my area, and touch the subject with my parents.

my mom isn't opposed to the idea of a new cagemate for haytham, but she thinks he's happier this way since his brother used to bully him.

ive been looking at some ads on kijiji and have just contacted a few people. unfortunately the humane society doesn't have any guinea pigs at the moment so i cant do boar dating very easily. there are a couple single male guinea pig ads, a couple ads with a pair of male guinea pigs, and an ad with a male and female guinea pig.

i was wondering if its best to only get haytham one friend, or if an additional pair would accept him into a trio? would he be happier with more than one? the more the merrier? or would the bonded guinea pig pairs exclude him? do they need to all live together? or would them being in the same area like someone mentioned be enough to perk him up.

i think he would like a friend, i played a video of a guinea pig wheeking the other day and he started wandering around trying to 'find the other piggie'.
 

Lady Kelly

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Boar trios very rarely work out so I would focus on a single make male to bond him with. Also with trios you can often find that somepig is inevitably left out. With my initial pair the younger was getting injured by trying to cuddle with the older one too much so I introduced a neutered male. Then the grumpy older one snuggled up to the male and the younger one was still left looking for somepig to cuddle and that's when I had to get a 4th lol
 
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