Piggy Wont Accept New Piggy

Status
Not open for further replies.

Ginnypig

Junior Guinea Pig
Joined
Oct 18, 2014
Messages
73
Reaction score
49
Points
205
Location
Essex
We have kept our new baby girl piggy in a seperate cage for three weeks but they have seen each other through the cages, ran around the lounge and had cuddles at the same time. She seems sad and wants to be with the other two though so we tried all different introducing ideas to get them to bond. Generally the oldest girl doesnt seem all that bothered by her and just nips her occasionally if she gets too close. She is our dominant pig and was aggressive with the 2nd pig also a girl. They still fight occasionally so was surprised by her indifference to the newby. Our second piggy however who is normally very docile will not accept the new baby at all. She chases her and bites her and wont leave her alone. We have tried putting them in the big cage together aswell but she chases her about biting her and trashing everything in the cage. The baby seems so happy in the new cage so we have temporarily moved the 2nd girl into the smaller cage as she needs supervision anyway as she is getting fat and we need to monitor her diet. Its not a permanent solution though and at present we can't afford another large cage. Really dont know what to do as dont want to rehome any of them. Help?!?
 

Claire W

Forum Donator 2020/21
Joined
Mar 23, 2008
Messages
29,193
Reaction score
18,554
Points
2,415
Location
Lancashire (Originally from Nottingham)
This sounds like normal dominant behaviour to me where the two older girls are putting the baby in her place.

Have you noticed any aggression? Nipping is something that happens during the bonding phase so long as the baby isn't becoming stressed and / or blood isn't drawn. Are your two other girls allowing baby to eat, drink and sleep?

You may like to try putting two or three food bowls in the cage so that they all have one each. Please remove any hides that only has one enterance to stop baby from becoming trapped inside by one of the older girls blocking her in.

I am tagging one of our more experienced members @Wiebke The chasing and nipping looks far worse to us than it is to the piggies and it is upsetting when we hear them constantly squeaking but sometimes you just have to sit it out whilst the heirachy is established.

In the meantime, you may find these two threads helpful :) https://www.theguineapigforum.co.uk/threads/dominance-behaviours-in-guinea-pigs.28949/ https://www.theguineapigforum.co.uk/threads/sow-behaviour.38561/

I wouldn't call it a lost cause just yet.

You say one of your girls is getting fat? Have you been weighing her daily and is there any chance at all that she could be pregnant?
 
Last edited:

Wiebke

Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Mar 10, 2009
Messages
76,901
Reaction score
53,615
Points
3,466
Location
Coventry UK
Have you introduced the girls in neutral space, made sure that acceptance has happened and that the two girls were well into sorting out the dominance between them before putting them into the neutralised and rearranged the cage? Piggies can feel very strongly about having their territory invaded.

Your girls are now well into the dominance phase; the oldest is not interested as her position of being top girl is not in question. She is just making sure that her private sphere and standing in respected. Your second girl is suddenly confronted with a new rival for her position as second-in-command, so she is keen on keeping that. You always see the worst of the dominance behaviour from the sow just above in the hierarchy.

Please distinguish between full-on biting with blood (comparatively rare in sows), intentional bites that end up with a mouth full of hair (which is more often how sows express strong misgivings towards another piggy) or dominance nipping, i.e. just letting the underpiggy feel the teeth without breaking the skin or pulling hair. It is not painful; just a gesture of power. The proper response is submission squealing; again, not from pain but to signal that the underpiggy will not put up a fight or a contest for the higher ranked piggy's position in the hierarchy. The last is very typical for sow bonding.

For the chasing, please make sure that you haven't got any hideys with just one entrance for the duration of the dominance phase, as the new underpiggy will be thrown out of them as matter of course. if your second girl will not let the newbie sleep, eat or rest at all, I would separate overnight and then restart in neutral space again tomorrow. Hopefully things will be a bit calmer then. The dominance phase can last around two weeks until all girls are feeling settled together and the hierarchy has been fully established.
https://www.theguineapigforum.co.uk/threads/introducing-and-re-introducing-guinea-pigs.38562/
https://www.theguineapigforum.co.uk/threads/sow-behaviour.38561/
 

Wiebke

Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Mar 10, 2009
Messages
76,901
Reaction score
53,615
Points
3,466
Location
Coventry UK
This sounds like normal dominant behaviour to me where the two older girls are putting the baby in her place.

Have you noticed any aggression? Nipping is something that happens during the bonding phase so long as the baby isn't becoming stressed and / or blood isn't drawn. Are your two other girls allowing baby to eat, drink and sleep?

You may like to try putting two or three food bowls in the cage so that they all have one each. Please remove any hides that only has one enterance to stop baby from becoming trapped inside by one of the older girls blocking her in.

I am tagging one of our more experienced members @Wiebke The chasing and nipping looks far worse to us than it is to the piggies and it is upsetting when we hear them constantly squeaking but sometimes you just have to sit it out whilst the heirachy is established.

In the meantime, you may find these two threads helpful :) https://www.theguineapigforum.co.uk/threads/dominance-behaviours-in-guinea-pigs.28949/ https://www.theguineapigforum.co.uk/threads/sow-behaviour.38561/

I wouldn't call it a lost cause just yet.

You say one of your girls is getting fat? Have you been weighing her daily and is there any chance at all that she could be pregnant?
@Claire W : I am getting alerts for new threads in this section. ;)
 

Ginnypig

Junior Guinea Pig
Joined
Oct 18, 2014
Messages
73
Reaction score
49
Points
205
Location
Essex
Thankyou. We have tried the neutral territory a few times but will keep trying. Have decided to put the new piggy back into the little cage as dont want to make 2nd piggy feel more threatened than she is by putting her in there and baby is very scared of 2nd piggy as she wont let her eat drink or sleep. Have to monitor 2nd piggies diet another time. Blood has been spilt but only a slight cut on ear. Really appreciate your views xx hope they will get on soon as hate seeing baby sad :-(
 
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top