Have 2 boars, considering a third boar

Brendan03C

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I've done my research. I know that many people say that boar trios only work 10% of the time. However, I don't know if that statistic is true. I haven't been able to find out how that percentage was calculated. It seems to me like a random number thrown around to stress that people think the chances of trios working are low. Don't get me wrong, I don't doubt that it's hard to make it work, but I feel like it's more possible than people say. I don't know how early anyone who tried bonding a trio gave up, but when I bonded my pair, it escalated to biting and fighting that led to bleeding and wounds on both of them. I think that this is where some people would stop and assume they're not compatible. However, I kept trying and eventually they bonded. It's been almost a year and there hasn't been a single fight since they bonded. Not even any biting. Most of the time they sleep in the same hidey. They seem to really enjoy each other. I don't know if I just got lucky that they worked it out, but I think that boars can be more compatible than people think, and that they give up on bonding them too quick. If anyone knows for sure that what I think is false, please let me know. I'm not saying that my opinion/theory is true. It's just what I think. And while researching boar trios, I found many people that have trios. I even found more people than I thought I would with quartets. What I noticed while researching is that the only places where boar trios are highly advised against by people are on this site, and guinea pig cages. It very well could be because the people here are more educated than other owners. It could also be that a misconception about boars and bonding started on these sites, and has continued since. Because of the (alleged) misconception, many people might not even attempt a trio and just say that they don't work. Again, I could be entirely wrong and it might be a proven fact that trios don't work. But I wasn't able to find anything to back up the claims about trios not working, besides the people on here that say they don't. And I'm not going to get a 3rd boar right away and try and prove people wrong. I'm interested in hearing what other people think about what I had to say. Just like everyone else here, I want my piggies to be happy and healthy. That's why I'm posting on here instead of irrationally getting a 3rd.
 

Jesse's pigs

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It is true that you can have multiple boars living together harmoniously- these are called bachelor groups and require more than just 3 or 4 males. The place I got Bellamy from had a huge cage divided in two with about 20 odd males all together and females the other side. This works becuase there are so many that one pig can't be entirely singled out and the huge amount of space ensured they could get out of each others way.

I think boar trios are likely to fail more than succeed becuase the odd number almost ensures that one pig is going to be bullied more than the rest. The more piggies added to a bonding the more hormones and bickering you can expect as they attempt to assert their dominance over all.

I think if you were to add a third pig to your current pairing you would almost certainly see the fighting start up again and likely even your original bond fail. It could work. Especially if you bought in a really young pig or a very old one who isn't as hormonal. But young piggies quickly grow and then will want to try and become dominant and if an older pig then passes the entire bond could again fail as the hierarchy shifts once more at this sudden change.
 

Piggies&buns

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:agr: The only way to get a group of males to work is to have at least 10 piggies make up a bachelor group in an exceptionally large space. They would need at least one square metre of space each, so you’d be looking at at least a 10 square metre room/shed, Most people cannot offer that.

As has been mentioned above, it’s not only adding third then might not work, the fighting that occurs will most likely break the bond between the original pair and then there are three single piggies each needing three new friends etc.
We see a lot of posts on this site where people have not realised you can’t add more pigs to boar pair, have gone ahead and done it and then we have had to advise on what to do next once it has all fallen apart. The failure rate is high.

The question is, if it didn’t work out then do you have the means both in space and financially to deal with it. You could potentially go from a happy pairing to having six piggies (three separate pairs) whose cages can’t go next to each other because the original two pigs can’t stand the sight of each other. It’s a big risk to take in my opinion.

If you were ever going to try a trio, then space is the key. The recommended cage sizes won’t be big enough to give each one a territory, so you’d have to go very big even for a trio. We do have a person on here who has managed to keep a trio who can hopefully give you her experience @Reenie .

My opinion is that if you have a pairing that is working, why do anything to that pair that could ruin that relationship.

Adding More Guinea Pigs Or Merging Pairs – What Works And What Not?
 
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Brendan03C

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It is true that you can have multiple boars living together harmoniously- these are called bachelor groups and require more than just 3 or 4 males. The place I got Bellamy from had a huge cage divided in two with about 20 odd males all together and females the other side. This works becuase there are so many that one pig can't be entirely singled out and the huge amount of space ensured they could get out of each others way.

I think boar trios are likely to fail more than succeed becuase the odd number almost ensures that one pig is going to be bullied more than the rest. The more piggies added to a bonding the more hormones and bickering you can expect as they attempt to assert their dominance over all.

I think if you were to add a third pig to your current pairing you would almost certainly see the fighting start up again and likely even your original bond fail. It could work. Especially if you bought in a really young pig or a very old one who isn't as hormonal. But young piggies quickly grow and then will want to try and become dominant and if an older pig then passes the entire bond could again fail as the hierarchy shifts once more at this sudden change.
I would be bringing in a young pig, most likely around 6-8 weeks old. I'm currently trying to research submissive and dominant behaviors to see if my current pair are both dominant, one dominant one submissive, or both submissive. Depending on their behaviors, I'd find it easier to make a decision on adding another. Essentially if my current pair are both submissive, even if the new pig would be a dominant one, they should still all be fine since he'd easily become the dominant one right? Based on what I've researched so far, they don't show any dominant behaviors besides the standard ones. They must rumble strut, occasionally nose off, and occasionally bottom sniff. Both of them do these, but neither of them retaliate. They both take it. When one nose offs the other, it'll just put up with it and then continue what it was doing. Same with the bottom sniffing. I don't know if that means that they're both submissive since none of them retaliate, and they just show basic boar behaviors from time to time. Or that since they've been together for almost a year and still occasionally show basic dominant behaviors, if that means that they're both a little dominant but don't retaliate because they view each other as equal? I have no idea who the dominant one is of the 2, so I have a hard time telling their behavior types.
 

Brendan03C

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:agr: The only way to get a group of males to work is to have at least 10 piggies make up a bachelor group in an exceptionally large space. They would need at least one square metre of space each, so you’d be looking at at least a 10 square metre room/shed, Most people cannot offer that.

As has been mentioned above, it’s not only adding third then might not work, the fighting that occurs will most likely break the bond between the original pair and then there are three single piggies each needing three new friends etc.
We see a lot of posts on this site where people have not realised you can’t add more pigs to boar pair, have gone ahead and done it and then we have had to advise on what to do next once it has all fallen apart. The failure rate is high.

Adding More Guinea Pigs Or Merging Pairs – What Works And What Not?
My cage setup is a diy cage that's 55 sq ft. If you take the minimum sq meter per boar, that's less than 20 ft for three. I'd have almost three times that. I do think that a big part of trios not working is not enough space, and not 3 of everything. I may be wrong (and probably am lol), but I feel like boar trios almost never working is a misconception (similar to how it used to be believed that boars couldn't be together in general), and that people just haven't found a proper way to introduce boar trios yet. I think that people having trios that work shows that it's absolutely possible for more than 2 boars to work out a hierarchy, and that owners just haven't found an effective way to introduce them. Again, I could be entirely wrong, but since trios work for some people, I think it should theoretically be able to work for everyone with enough effort and proper cage space and materials. It could take months, but I feel like it's more possible than people think. I'm currently trying to find out my current pairs behaviors. If you could look at my previous reply to Jesse's pigs where I explained the behaviors they show to each other, and give me your opinion on if you think that they're dominant or submissive, that'd be great. Because if my current pair are both submissive, wouldn't adding a third work really well? Because if the third is dominant behavior, wouldn't that mean he'd easily become the dominant pig, and my previous 2 pigs would go back to their equal state before the third?
 

Piggies&buns

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I would be bringing in a young pig, most likely around 6-8 weeks old. I'm currently trying to research submissive and dominant behaviors to see if my current pair are both dominant, one dominant one submissive, or both submissive. Depending on their behaviors, I'd find it easier to make a decision on adding another. Essentially if my current pair are both submissive, even if the new pig would be a dominant one, they should still all be fine since he'd easily become the dominant one right? Based on what I've researched so far, they don't show any dominant behaviors besides the standard ones. They must rumble strut, occasionally nose off, and occasionally bottom sniff. Both of them do these, but neither of them retaliate. They both take it. When one nose offs the other, it'll just put up with it and then continue what it was doing. Same with the bottom sniffing. I don't know if that means that they're both submissive since none of them retaliate, and they just show basic boar behaviors from time to time. Or that since they've been together for almost a year and still occasionally show basic dominant behaviors, if that means that they're both a little dominant but don't retaliate because they view each other as equal? I have no idea who the dominant one is of the 2, so I have a hard time telling their behavior types.
No, it doesn’t necessarily mean they’d go back to their state before the third. Their relationship now is most likely to be because their know their position now and are happy with that not because they are both submissive. Adding a unknown quantity in a baby third boar who will become a hormone driven teenager, does not mean that your two will stay the same in their behaviours. The presence of another male who will push his luck as a teenager (4 to approx 14 months of age) (it’s what they do) could change their relationship and this is where you run into problems. Adding a third might not cause problems to begin with, might not be for a few months and then you’re thinking it’s all going to be ok and then suddenly the dynamic changes because the baby third becomes his own character which you didn’t see a tiny 8 week old baby and the original pair don’t like it. They may be super laid back now but it doesn’t have to stay that way when somebody else threatens their harmony.
Only you can make the decision if you are prepared to try it and It is so rare to see the trios working out that when it does, it is great. But we always advise anybody who is going to attempt it to have that back up plan to have another few cages and the funds to potentially have to get up to another three piggies as new companions for all if all relationships break down.
 

Brendan03C

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No, it doesn’t necessarily mean they’d go back to their state before the third. Their relationship now is most likely to be because their know their position now and are happy with that not because they are both submissive. Adding a unknown quantity in a baby third boar who will become a hormone driven teenager, does not mean that your two will stay the same in their behaviours. The presence of another male who will push his luck as a teenager (4 to approx 14 months of age) (it’s what they do) could change their relationship and this is where you run into problems. Adding a third might not cause problems to begin with, might not be for a few months and then you’re thinking it’s all going to be ok and then suddenly the dynamic changes because the baby third becomes his own character which you didn’t see a tiny 8 week old baby and the original pair don’t like it. They may be super laid back now but it doesn’t have to stay that way when somebody else threatens their harmony.
Only you can make the decision if you are prepared to try it and It is so rare to see the trios working out that when it does, it is great. But we always advise anybody who is going to attempt it to have that back up plan to have another few cages and the funds to potentially have to get up to another three piggies as new companions for all if all relationships break down.
But do you have a thought as to what their behavior types could be based on what I described? Sorry, I'm just not educated enough about behaviors to tell on my own. And I am very aware of the young third becoming his own character as a teenager. I can't tell you how many reddit post I've seen saying "my boars were fine for months and out of nowhere they got in a huge fight" while researching trios. I've also seen later posts that say they worked it out. However, I've also seen some that say they didn't. One interesting post I saw was how a person's trio got in a fight after being fine for months, and they had to keep them separated for a couple months, and later re introduced them and they were fine again. To be honest, the main reason I think I want to attempt a trio is because when I first got my pair, I was never planning on expanding. But after building my diy cage and seeing posts and videos about herds, I decided I wanted to add a third. I did research before I got a third and found out how 2 boars are so difficult to add onto. I'm kind of kicking myself because if I would have known I wanted to eventually expand and if I would have done research before I got my pair, I would have gone with sows. But don't get me wrong, I love my 2 boars and wouldn't replace them. But I still want to expand into a herd, and it seems like the only way to do so is to attempt a trio. Having 2 pairs of boars doesn't seem the same to me as 1 trio. I'd prefer a herd over groups. If the trio doesn't work out and I had to resort to groups I would, but a trio seems so appealing to me.
 

Siikibam

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What’s wrong with getting another bonded pair? You’d have your herd, just not in the sense of them living together. And would you then add another to the three boys, if they did manage to live together?

As for who’s dominant...I’m not entirely sure. It’s generallya case of one being more dominant than the other, even if just slightly. Is there one who rumblestruts more than the other? One in particular who chases or mounts his cage mate? And how old are they?
 

Piggies&buns

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You say that having two pairs of boars isn’t as appealing as a trio and I do see what you mean but It just seems to me that if you want more pigs, risking your boys relationship isn’t the way to go about it. yes, It may work out but it just might end up large vets bills and up to three separate pairs of pigs that can’t stand the sight of each other. it seems a high price to pay to me.

Without knowing the exact ins and outs of your boys behaviour and seeing their behaviour first hand, I wouldn’t be able to call who is dominant. However, you do need to bear in mind that just because you can’t see any outright dominant behaviour, the pigs will still know who is boss. They may seem calm to you but there is just no telling what is going on underneath that!
I have an 18 month old and a 19 month old. The 18 month old will rumblestrut and the 19 month old mounts (not usually in response to the rumblestrutting). They both chase each other. All dominance behaviours. I do know that it’s my 19 month old who is slightly more dominant but their behaviours don’t make that entirely clear, the 18 month old isn’t clearly submissive although he is. This is why it is very difficult to call and risking them both being more submissive, and a new third being dominant is just not safe as one of your original two will be more dominant than you think.

I would actually like a second boar pair myself. I am hoping this will happen in the spring time when ive got my new shed but even having a second pair in the same space as my boys slightly worries me. It should be absolutely fine but I would hate for anything to happen to my boys relationship that was my fault.
 
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Brendan03C

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What’s wrong with getting another bonded pair? You’d have your herd, just not in the sense of them living together. And would you then add another to the three boys, if they did manage to live together?

As for who’s dominant...I’m not entirely sure. It’s generallya case of one being more dominant than the other, even if just slightly. Is there one who rumblestruts more than the other? One in particular who chases or mounts his cage mate? And how old are they?
In general there's absolutely nothing wrong with having multiple pairs. It just doesn't necessarily fit with the way I interact with my current pair. Their cage is in my bedroom, and my entire room is piggy-proofed. When I'm at home I let them free roam around my room, but they like constantly switching between their cage and free roaming. If I had two pairs, I don't think I'd be able to do this. I'd have to let one pair have a certain amount of time to free roam, and same with the others. But since they like to constantly go in and out of their cage it seems like it might not be fair. For example, if each pair had 2 hours of free roam time, one pair might spend over half of that time in their cage, whereas the other half might spend the entire time free roaming. The first pair wouldn't get as much time to free roam as they normally get, since after being in the cage for an hour, they might want to spend the next 2 hours free roaming but can't because the time would have gone to the other pair. I hope that example makes sense. Another reason is because of the cage size. My cage is 55 sq ft. (I know that's a lot for 2 pigs, but I've noticed the bigger the cage they have, the more active they are. So why not.) And my room is about 200 sq ft. I'd have to add another 55 sq ft. cage for the second pair (I wouldn't want to make the cages smaller because that's not fair for the first pair. Getting their cage downgraded because there are more pigs in the room.) so over half my room would be cages. It'd also decrease their free roam space drastically. And as for adding a 4th later on, I doubt it. My 2 pigs are American guinea pigs, but after getting them I've fallen in love with abyssinians. I feel like adding a third would take advantage of the large cage, and allow me to get an abyssinian. If I were to get a 4th, I wouldn't feel comfortable having 4 boars in a 55 sq ft. cage, so I'd have to expand it which I don't necessarily want to do. I also doubt I could convince my parents to get a 4th. (I'm 16 still living with parents. I pay for everything - hay, sherwood pellets, veggies, fleece, everything. Even though I financially support the pigs and my parents recognize them as my pigs, not a family thing, they're still controlling over how many I can have.) It took a while to convince them to possibly add a third. Getting a 4th seems out of the question.

One in particular seems to rumble strut the most, and is almost always the first to do so. The other one most of the time will rumble strut back, but one of them always seems to start it. They don't chase each other or mount. One is 15 months (the one who rumble struts the most), and the other is 14 months.
 

Brendan03C

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You say that having two pairs of boars isn’t as appealing as a trio and I do see what you mean but It just seems to me that if you want more pigs, risking your boys relationship isn’t the way to go about it. yes, It may work out but it just might end up large vets bills and up to three separate pairs of pigs that can’t stand the sight of each other. it seems a high price to pay to me.

Without knowing the exact ins and outs of your boys behaviour and seeing their behaviour first hand, I wouldn’t be able to call who is dominant. However, you do need to bear in mind that just because you can’t see any outright dominant behaviour, the pigs will still know who is boss. They may seem calm to you but there is just no telling what is going on underneath that!
I have an 18 month old and a 19 month old. The 18 month old will rumblestrut and the 19 month old mounts (not usually in response to the rumblestrutting). They both chase each other. All dominance behaviours. I do know that it’s my 19 month old who is slightly more dominant but their behaviours don’t make that entirely clear, the 18 month old isn’t clearly submissive although he is. This is why it is very difficult to call and risking them both being more submissive, and a new third being dominant is just not safe as one of your original two will be more dominant than you think.

I would actually like a second boar pair myself. I am hoping this will happen in the spring time when ive got my new shed but even having a second pair in the same space as my boys slightly worries me. It should be absolutely fine but I would hate for anything to happen to my boys relationship that was my fault.
The other thing I've considered is keeping these boys as a pair and starting a separate sow heard. However, I don't know how well that'd work. I wouldn't want to decrease the size of their cage, and since the cage takes up 1/4th of my room, the only way I could see adding another cage of similar size is to make another cage on top of the pairs by using c&c grids. But I'm not sure how well that'd work because I've read that boars can fight just by being able to smell sows. And I'd also be worried about the boars being able to see the sows when they get floor time/free roam time. I haven't considered it too much because it seems like a very last resort, and I honestly doubt I could convince my parents to start another herd. (I'm 16 and live with parents. I pay for all the pigs stuff, but it's their house and they make the rules about how many pigs I can have.)

My pair doesn't chase each other or mount. The only time I can recall them mounting was within the first month of them being introduced. Since then they haven't. They've also never chased each other. This is why I can't tell if they both seem like submissive pigs and one is just slightly more dominant, or if they're both dominant and their personalities just go together really well so they never mess with each other.

If my parents would allow me to have as many piggies as I want since I financially support them all (I can't help but think of Erin's Ark as an example lol. When she still lived with her parents she had sooo many pigs.), I'd keep these guys as a pair and start a sow herd or a herd with a neutered boar and the rest being sows. But unfortunately that's not possible for me.
 

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But your reason for not having two separate pairs regarding free roaming space and time will still stand with a trio. when/if the trio fails you will still end up the same situation with having to have separate cages and separate free roaming time. If you don’t think your parents would let you have a fourth pig, then risking a trio is dangerous as you could potentially end up having to have six pigs in your room. There is no guarantee that your boys relationship will remain in tact and they could need to be separated.

At their age, they are still just in teenage months. As they get older and they’ve been together longer, their relationship is established, seeing dominance behaviours May decrease as they don’t feel the need to assert themselves over each other. This doesn’t change their relationship. One will still be dominant and the other submissive but just subtly.

You wouldn’t be able to keep sows in the same room. Your boars aren’t used to sow pheromones and just smelling them could ruin the boys relationship.

I do totally understand the desire to have more, but your situation doesn’t seem to allow for that. My advice is to just enjoy your boys, let them have all that lovely free roaming space and enjoy their relationship.

 

Brendan03C

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But your reason for not having two separate pairs regarding free roaming space and time will still stand with a trio. when/if the trio fails you will still end up the same situation with having to have separate cages and separate free roaming time. If you don’t think your parents would let you have a fourth pig, then risking a trio is dangerous as you could potentially end up having to have six pigs in your room. There is no guarantee that your boys relationship will remain in tact and they could need to be separated.

At their age, they are still just in teenage months. As they get older and they’ve been together longer, their relationship is established, seeing dominance behaviours May decrease as they don’t feel the need to assert themselves over each other. This doesn’t change their relationship. One will still be dominant and the other submissive but just subtly.

You wouldn’t be able to keep sows in the same room. Your boars aren’t used to sow pheromones and just smelling them could ruin the boys relationship.

I do totally understand the desire to have more, but your situation doesn’t seem to allow for that. My advice is to just enjoy your boys, let them have all that lovely free roaming space and enjoy their relationship.

If a trio doesn't work and I need other pigs for them they'd let that happen. Fortunately they understand pigs needing a friend and how they can fight. But your point about fee roaming is valid. If I ended up with 6 the free roaming time would be even less less per pair. Plus like 3/4th of my room would be cages lol. And my bed and everything take up about 1/4th so there'd literally be no free roam space anyways lol.

And yeah I thought so about the sows. The last possible option I could think of is if they don't work to keep the troublemaker(s) away with cage dividers? I've seen posts on reddit of people doing that. If it were to go wrong I'm hoping it'd just be one of the pigs, and he could just have a section of the cage to himself. And overtime they could potentially warm up to each other. I know it seems like I'm heavily pushing to attempt a trio and that I'm more focused on getting another pig instead of making sure my pairs relationship is good, but I just feel confident that I could make a trio work. And if it works their relationship could become even better. But it's a risk. Since they're done growing and are almost adults, I'm starting to miss having a young pig. Weighing it every week and seeing how much it's grown, watching it grow up, and if a trio works, I'd love to see how my pair would treat a young pig. I'd love to experience having a young one again, and if I could get an abyssinian pup, that'd be absolutely amazing. My pair just feels kind of incomplete rn. They have a very big cage that could be utilized by another pig. It doesn't feel the same not having a young one. Idk :/
 

Piggies&buns

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In general there's absolutely nothing wrong with having multiple pairs. It just doesn't necessarily fit with the way I interact with my current pair.

My 2 pigs are American guinea pigs, but after getting them I've fallen in love with abyssinians. I feel like adding a third would take advantage of the large cage, and allow me to get an abyssinian.
Your interaction with the current pair isn’t what is important. It’s their interaction with each other.

Taking advantage of a big cage is not worth risking their relationship over. You may love an Abby but there is no guarantee your boys will love anybody other than each other. A big cage is only part of the equation. If pigs don’t like each other no amount of space is going to change that. They may have a lot of room to get away from each other so allow them to tolerate living in the same space, but tolerating because of no choice and living happily and harmoniously are two different things.

I personally think it’s far too big of a risk on a ‘hope’ it works out. The chances are it isn’t going to, if fights occur they will probably never warm up to each other. Keeping them away from cage dividers - if they fought there is always the possibility that it wouldnt be as simple as just separating with dividers. They may need to be kept at totally opposite ends of the room. Potentially three separate cages.

You may think you can make it work but it ultimately comes down to the guinea pigs liking each other. just going out and buying a new pig (rescuing always being the preferred option) because it’s one you like the look of is not necessarily going to result in a happy bond, even more so in a boar trio. A trio, even if it does make it through the third pigs teenage times (around 14 months of age) there will constantly be the risk of fall out even into adulthood. With three there is always the risk of an outsider situation occurring, somebody always gets left on their own.

Missing having a baby around is, in my opinion, the worst reason to risk a trio. Within 8 weeks of getting a baby, you’ve got a teenager ....

Ultimately it is your decision.
 

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You say you miss having a baby pig. What will happen when the (theoretical) third pig grows up. Would you then want to get another young one? And you can (and should) still weigh your boys weekly and do a health check. You can enjoy the interaction they have with you and each other. And they can enjoy all that free roaming space 😁
 

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Hi there, I think perhaps you aren't appreciating the fact that the advice given on the forum is a) based on many decades of experience from our behaviour experts, b) based on the experiences of people who have brought home 3 or 4 boys then run into trouble and turned to the forum for help, and c) tailored to be good general guidelines for any of our 20 thousand plus members and any casual visitors who are seeking information.
You say you have 55 sqft of cage (which we would love to see, please post pics that sounds an amazing set up) but I think you are quite unusual in having that amount of space for piggies! I have 35 sqft of my home dedicated to guinea pigs but I realise that this is not typical, many of our forum members and casual visitors have 10 to 12 sqft of available space and do not have space for a "plan B" if things dont work out. Then they end up having to return or rehome the 3rd piggy which is something we want to avoid as there are already far too many sad little boars looking for homes because they didn't fit in somewhere.
Of course you are free to follow or ignore our advice and guidelines, and if you decide that you know best you can come back in a few months and let us know how you made it a success. Our most experienced behaviour expert is offline this weekend, but she will probably pick up this thread next week sometime and offer further advice- she has kept very large groups of guinea pigs in all combinations and can probably give you some first hand insights.
 

Reenie

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I have a boar trio. I may be wrong but I think I am only one of two or three members of this forum who have this combo, fairly stable and working. I have lost count of the times that I have seen people here introduce a third boar and regret it.
My theory on why mine work are, in order of importance: personalities - I have one boar who 'sorts out' the other two when they bicker. I fully believe that the other two wouldn't even get on as a pair without him; space - they are in a 6x3 c&c with a 1x3 loft (32 Square feet roughly) which gives them space to get away from each other; multiple places to feed and sleep - originally all with 2 exits, but I have risked single exits now; they have always been together - and I think this is very important, as they have never had to be bonded with all the tension that involves. Even with all this going for them, I have had times when I've really thought it was all going to pot, which was quite stressful. I have always been prepared to separate them if necessary, and in my head, when one of my other pair passes, I will definitely pair one of the trio with the other because one of the trio definitely the 'outsider', although they do all call for each other when separated.
You have some of these things in place, but not all, and some are unknown quantities for you.
The choice is yours, but if you choose to risk it, you must be prepared for the potential of 3 singles being a very real possibility. Good luck whatever you decide.
 

eileen

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i have had one boar trio work,one was a elderly disabled piggie,the other two boars were very laid back.but mostly ive had boars on the dominant side,who in bonding just a pair has esculated to all out furball fights within 3minutes.with that has come abcesses,teeth knocked out,gapeing holes under the chin.ive had all my boars neutered to go with sows. i still have two boars that are on there own due to fighting and clambering over the grids to start a fight. these two will get neutered soon so can place with sows.you have to be knowledgable in bonding,and i agree with all the others that have posted it very rarely works having a trio.enjoy your boys as they are..
 

Brendan03C

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Your interaction with the current pair isn’t what is important. It’s their interaction with each other.

Taking advantage of a big cage is not worth risking their relationship over. You may love an Abby but there is no guarantee your boys will love anybody other than each other. A big cage is only part of the equation. If pigs don’t like each other no amount of space is going to change that. They may have a lot of room to get away from each other so allow them to tolerate living in the same space, but tolerating because of no choice and living happily and harmoniously are two different things.

I personally think it’s far too big of a risk on a ‘hope’ it works out. The chances are it isn’t going to, if fights occur they will probably never warm up to each other. Keeping them away from cage dividers - if they fought there is always the possibility that it wouldnt be as simple as just separating with dividers. They may need to be kept at totally opposite ends of the room. Potentially three separate cages.

You may think you can make it work but it ultimately comes down to the guinea pigs liking each other. just going out and buying a new pig (rescuing always being the preferred option) because it’s one you like the look of is not necessarily going to result in a happy bond, even more so in a boar trio. A trio, even if it does make it through the third pigs teenage times (around 14 months of age) there will constantly be the risk of fall out even into adulthood. With three there is always the risk of an outsider situation occurring, somebody always gets left on their own.

Missing having a baby around is, in my opinion, the worst reason to risk a trio. Within 8 weeks of getting a baby, you’ve got a teenager ....

Ultimately it is your decision.
I never thought really thought of how it could affect their interaction with each other. I was thinking that adding a third = more interaction = more fun for me and the pigs. But I think you're right. They've been getting along really well, and adding a third could permanently ruin that. It might mean more interaction, but not necessarily good interaction that the pigs will all enjoy. They seem very happy with each other, and I don't want to risk ruining that. For the time being I won't get a third. Maybe in the future I'll re consider, but for now it's off the table.

Yes, I'd love to have an abby, but what's the point of having one if it makes my current pigs unhappy? Don't get me wrong, I absolutely love my current pair and still think they're adorable, but abby's just look so loveable! But I'm not going to risk getting a new pig just because I want to try a different breed, when I already have 2 adorable and healthy pigs that get along great. I still think a trio is definitely possible, but for the time being I'm not going to risk it.
 
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