Guinea Pigs Squeak When I Move Them

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Matt Y

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Hi All,

I have 4 pigs, 2 of them are older by a few weeks.

Each day I move them from the hutch to the run to make sure they get plenty of exercise and fresh air. The older 2 will always run away from me, but accept their fate when I pick them up to move them. The youngest 2 will squeak and squeal as if in distress when I pick them up.

I always make sure that their feet have something to rest on, usually by resting them on my arm.

Is this squealing something I should be worried about ? Am I traumatising my pigs when I move them ?

The oldest are maybe 14/15 weeks old, the youngest ones that squeal are maybe 12 weeks old I would guess.

Any advice would be much appreciated.

Thanks

Matt
 

Wiebke

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Hi All,

I have 4 pigs, 2 of them are older by a few weeks.

Each day I move them from the hutch to the run to make sure they get plenty of exercise and fresh air. The older 2 will always run away from me, but accept their fate when I pick them up to move them. The youngest 2 will squeak and squeal as if in distress when I pick them up.

I always make sure that their feet have something to rest on, usually by resting them on my arm.

Is this squealing something I should be worried about ? Am I traumatising my pigs when I move them ?

The oldest are maybe 14/15 weeks old, the youngest ones that squeal are maybe 12 weeks old I would guess.

Any advice would be much appreciated.

Thanks

Matt
Picking up cuts very close to the their prey animal instincts; youngsters at that age are at their most vocal and dramatic anyway.

If you have several piggies to move, you can try my method of using a square or oval waste paper basket, one side of which you line with a towel or fleece and which you can shield with your body during the transport. Always wait with the lifting up until the piggies have settled.
How To Pick Up And Weigh Your Guinea Pig
How To Understand Guinea Pig Instincts And Speak Piggy Body Language
You may find the tips in these two links here helpful:
 

VickiA

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Hello and a warm welcome to the forum.
Please could you add your location to your profile so we know when you are.
I have one piggy who still screams blue murder at being picked up (she's been with me for years) so I always pick her up in a cosy or tunnel - it's just easier for us both! Please don't let the shrieking put you off handling them. It's just their natural prey instincts as @Wiebke has said.
 

Matt Y

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I've added my location. I'm from just south of Bath, UK.

The 2 that shriek are both sisters, and they immediately run to each other for cover. Sometimes I'll very gently use the tunnel, and that does make it a bit quieter, but I suspect it's because they think I've not noticed them.

I don't want them to be afraid of us, and gradually get used to people over time. I just want to keep their stress levels down.
 

sport_billy

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I've added my location. I'm from just south of Bath, UK.

The 2 that shriek are both sisters, and they immediately run to each other for cover. Sometimes I'll very gently use the tunnel, and that does make it a bit quieter, but I suspect it's because they think I've not noticed them.

I don't want them to be afraid of us, and gradually get used to people over time. I just want to keep their stress levels down.
They will get more used to you over time I promise, some piggies are always more timid and nervous than others. Youngsters as Wiebke said are quite dramatic with there feelings. We find the tunnel or cosy technique works well to pick them up and takes the stress out for you and them. Once of lap give them a sprig of Coriander or something to bribe them with :)
 

Matt Y

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Oh, Coriander, I haven't tried them on that yet.

I'm in no rush, I just want them to be chilled :) They are still a lot smaller than the others, so I guess when they get bigger they'll be more relaxed.
 

sport_billy

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:) Food of the goods, any of their favourite food is a great bribe buddy. And start with lap time for a short amount of time then build up.

They will be, if I could get Vimto tame then anything is possible - she was an absolute nutter and a Biter! As pigs get bigger they do chill a little more, babies and little one s tend to want to be into everything, the world is too exciting to sit still!
 

Matt Y

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The oldest (Blondie) is also a biter, she's getting much better and will tolerate me for maybe a minute before she bites to remind me she has other things to do.

The food that seems to be the favourite is either curly kale, or gem lettuce, depending on what Tesco have reduced on an evening :)
 

Freela

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Hadley is a shrieker sometimes when we pick her up... as a baby I suspect she was actually scared, now I think she does it to demonstrate that she was in the middle of something. She certainly isn't afraid of us anymore! However, a lot of pigs, even those that are really comfortable being held, dislike the feeling of being 'stalked and grabbed,' as it cuts really close to their prey instinct, even if they realize that you are not going to eat them!
 

schnicksy

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One of my piggies will scream the house down when I pick her up one day and then the next sheets me pick her without any chasing and will curl up and go to sleep. I think it depends on whether she wants cuddles or not!

One of my other piggies used to nip when I first had her. She stopped doing it eventually and now only occasionally nibbles clothes.
 

Tiamolly123

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They will get more used to you over time I promise, some piggies are always more timid and nervous than others. Youngsters as Wiebke said are quite dramatic with there feelings. We find the tunnel or cosy technique works well to pick them up and takes the stress out for you and them. Once of lap give them a sprig of Coriander or something to bribe them with :)
Sport-Billy I'm still getting emails through.
 

Tiamolly123

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Hi All,

I have 4 pigs, 2 of them are older by a few weeks.

Each day I move them from the hutch to the run to make sure they get plenty of exercise and fresh air. The older 2 will always run away from me, but accept their fate when I pick them up to move them. The youngest 2 will squeak and squeal as if in distress when I pick them up.

I always make sure that their feet have something to rest on, usually by resting them on my arm.

Is this squealing something I should be worried about ? Am I traumatising my pigs when I move them ?

The oldest are maybe 14/15 weeks old, the youngest ones that squeal are maybe 12 weeks old I would guess.

Any advice would be much appreciated.

Thanks

Matt
Hi Matt,
Welcome, we are a friendly bunch here :yahoo:
 
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