Introducing Girls Together Advice Please!

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crnyng

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I own 2 around 1 year old girls who I aqcuired together, they have been together since I'm sure they can remember. I also recently aquired two new girls, perhaps around 5-7 months old. The two pairs were separate for the first two months and I recently introduced them. On the floor they were fine, all got along with barely any chattering or rumblestrutting. However I cleaned the older girls cage today completely clean and put all 4 together. They got along for the most part with normal nips here and there and some rumblestrutting. But come recently my one older girl keeps chasing the younger ones, one specifically more so. At some point she is completely fine with both younger girls can sleep next to them but then out of no where will nip one and then chase it till the younger one stops or is cornered and she doesn't even do anything after that. Will just stand there like that for a moment and then lay down or walk away. Having never introduced pigs before that weren't already paired together I'm not sure if this is normal. I'm hoping someone can tell me if this is or if it's not acceptable. Any reccomendations or tips on how to help out the situation. I took her out and stuck her in a pen with a hut and food/water. I'm not going to be able to sleep wondering if she is going to hurt any of them. I know for introducing it's best to leave them all together and letting it play out but I can't tell if this is okay yet or aggressive. Honestly I'm not sure what to do. If I leave her in the pen alone overnight this would be the first night her and my other older girl have ever been apart. Please ease my worry and help me out with this situation.
 

crnyng

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I feel bad taking the one out as well as possibly messing up their hierarchy process so I put two open ended tubes in and took out all huts/hidies and am putting the older one who keeps chasing and nipping back in. But please still help me out with this.
 

Wiebke

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I own 2 around 1 year old girls who I aqcuired together, they have been together since I'm sure they can remember. I also recently aquired two new girls, perhaps around 5-7 months old. The two pairs were separate for the first two months and I recently introduced them. On the floor they were fine, all got along with barely any chattering or rumblestrutting. However I cleaned the older girls cage today completely clean and put all 4 together. They got along for the most part with normal nips here and there and some rumblestrutting. But come recently my one older girl keeps chasing the younger ones, one specifically more so. At some point she is completely fine with both younger girls can sleep next to them but then out of no where will nip one and then chase it till the younger one stops or is cornered and she doesn't even do anything after that. Will just stand there like that for a moment and then lay down or walk away. Having never introduced pigs before that weren't already paired together I'm not sure if this is normal. I'm hoping someone can tell me if this is or if it's not acceptable. Any reccomendations or tips on how to help out the situation. I took her out and stuck her in a pen with a hut and food/water. I'm not going to be able to sleep wondering if she is going to hurt any of them. I know for introducing it's best to leave them all together and letting it play out but I can't tell if this is okay yet or aggressive. Honestly I'm not sure what to do. If I leave her in the pen alone overnight this would be the first night her and my other older girl have ever been apart. Please ease my worry and help me out with this situation.

Please let them get on with settling the dominance and establishing a hierarchy. You always start an introduction on neutral ground and then transfer to the new and newly cleaned and rearranged cage once acceptance has happened and ideally once the very worst of the dominance as to who comes top of the new group has been sorted out. In the following days you will see lots of dominance behaviour as the other sows establish their own ranking; it travels slowly down the ranks. The worst of the dominance behaviour is always directed at the piggy just below in the ranks to make sure that they can't pass. It takes on average two weeks to establish a group.
Please read these guides here carefully:
Illustrated Bonding Behaviours And Dynamics
Sow Behaviour
Dominance Behaviours In Guinea Pigs
 

crnyng

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Thank you for the response. I did start with neutral territory but for only about an hour or hour and a half (while I cleaned the cage). All seemed fine there but once in the cage together that's when the chasing started. Was just curious more so if the nipping and chasing is normal dominance or an aggressive situation. Like I said she doesn't seem to attack the younger one, just nips at her once or twice and then chases her, ignores her for some time and then does it all again.
 

Blossom15

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How are your piggies now?

In the summer I was in the same situation as you, with one of the older sows chasing the younger two. Things have changed so much now. Now they all get on brilliantly, even see them licking eachother from time to time - the youngsters have definitely made the original two sows lives more interesting!

Hope all goes well for you too.
 

crnyng

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They're a bit better! Still somewhat chasing and nipping but not as much which has calmed my nerves. The other day they ate together side by side!

image.jpg
 

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They're a bit better! Still somewhat chasing and nipping but not as much which has calmed my nerves. The other day they ate together side by side!

View attachment 42892

Give them time! The dominance phase can last up to two weeks, but the first days are usually the roughest. Your girls have bonded, now they are working out the ranking and status within group from the top down. You will usually see each sow in turn defend her standing against the sow ranked just below.

They are a gorgeous quartet!
 
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