Reintroducing guinea pigs

hilltop

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Our children were given a pair of guinea pigs by their grandparents in the early summer, supposedly a pair of females, but predictably one turned out to be a boar! He has now been neutered, though by that stage the female was already pregnant, so we have also had a litter born.

Before the boars operation, they were very happy companions. They have been in separate hutches, facing eachother so they can see eachother and "talk" throughout the pre op/post op/birth/baby stage. They have pined for eachother dreadfully though and have been apart for a little over 2 months, except for supervised time together in a box while their hutches are cleaned.

Now the little ones are weaned and heading for new homes, we have started to put them together for longer periods of time with a view to them sharing a hutch again. The problem is they keep fighting. The sow especially is aggressive, biting at the boar. Is their relationship doomed?! Will they get over it and learn to get on again?! Any tips to help the reintroduction go more smoothly?
 

Siikibam

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When you say bite, is she nipping or is actually pulling hair out? With bonding you need to put them together and see it to the end - whether good or bad. You can’t keep separating then putting together again. Have you also been doing it in a neutral area?

Have a read of the guides I’ve linked below and see where the Dow’s behaviour is in terms of dominance/dislike.

One last thing, please never put a boar in with a sow until he’s safe, even when neutered. It takes a mere second (even with supervision) and separating could cause severe damage to both. There have been incidents where a boar that wasn’t 6 weeks post neuter got a sow pregnant.

A Closer Look At Pairs (Boars - Sows - Mixed)
Bonds In Trouble
Dominance Behaviours In Guinea Pigs
" Biting" And What You Can Do (Biting, Tweaking, Nibbling and Nipping) (no 4)
 

hilltop

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It's a good 10 weeks since the boar was neutered, so I'm not worried on that score. She's just nipping, not pulling out hair or anything. They've been together in a neutral area for relatively short times as the vet advised a gradual, supervised reintroduction. We had hoped to put them back together permanently tomorrow when the pups are separated from the sow. Do you think it would be safe enough to put them into the hutch together and assume they will work out their differences? They were happy as a pair before.
 

Piggies&buns

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It's a good 10 weeks since the boar was neutered, so I'm not worried on that score. She's just nipping, not pulling out hair or anything. They've been together in a neutral area for relatively short times as the vet advised a gradual, supervised reintroduction. We had hoped to put them back together permanently tomorrow when the pups are separated from the sow. Do you think it would be safe enough to put them into the hutch together and assume they will work out their differences? They were happy as a pair before.
you will need to put them in the neutral area again for many hours and see the process through - to either success or failure. Don’t just put them together In the hutch tomorrow - it’ll be seen as territory invasion (of whoever’s hutch you put them into) and that will cause a fight.
 

Siikibam

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Guinea pigs don’t do gradual introduction I’m afraid. It’s all or nothing.
 
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