Small fight or pending problem? Bonding boars

AngeH

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Hi All,

I'm new to signing up (hello!) but have used this forum many times in the past to search advice and it has been so helpful. Thank you. I'm a fairly experienced owner; 20 years of having boars and have always have had two, either bonded or side by side when trouble occurred! But I'm in a quandry with my current pair and hoping for some advice please.

I have two boars, around 10 months old. They've lived harmoniously until 3 weeks ago when they had a fight. I read all the guides in this forum about when it's getting bad...and they were pretty much amber to red on this one occasion - serious rumblestrutting and the loudest teeth clacking I've ever heard, which culminated in a lunge and some furball flight :( They kept their distance afterwards for a few hours, but there was a small nick on the usually dominant ones face and small patch of missing fur on the others face (only found by some serious hair parting). The fight was stirred by the usual submissive one suddenly chasing the other around the cage. After hours of watching them (and there still being some amber warnings), I decided to put a grid cage divider up as I had to go to bed, hoping they would calm with some temporary side by side separation - and they went back together the next morning.

They've been fine since apart from some general rumbling and annoying each other - but always caused by the usually submissive pestering the dominant and wanting to be wherever he is. I thought we'd recovered and maybe it was a temporary irritation as it was a particularly hot day that time. Until tonight...

I heard a scuffle and came through to find them minor teeth clacking and rumbling, and then the (previously) submissive one launched at the other. They separated themselves without my intervention but possibly caused by me coming through to the room, and they calmed down. I took them both out separately to check in case I'd missed an earlier fight/any wounds. And the (previously?) dominant had a small nick on his face again. It's definitely not a bite wound and wasn't properly bleeding but clearly was a scratch.

Sorry for all the details but thought it best to fully explain. I have two of everything (bowls, hideys, water bottles, corner covers) and a good size cage/space (5 x 3 C&C) .

I'm working from home right now due to COVID so I am watching them daily which is great. And they've been generally fine. The submissive sometimes decides to try and assert dominance, usually by a stealth approach, and sometimes they 'nose off' but the dominant either wins and the other backs away, or just runs off to another corner and gets out of his way.

They are now calm again after their scuffle tonight, and there's no bullying behaviour, but I guess my question is - are they in trouble? The submissive is clearly (I believe) making moves for dominance and I've not seen it suddenly shift like this. Since this has been the second time I've seen it get pretty serious I'm worried if this is maybe their teenage hormone stage and I'm in for more trouble ahead. I do not want to separate them if I don't need to, but I'm worried about overnight etc and if it's going to escalate again.

Has anyone been in the situation and can offer any advice? Should I be as worried as I am? Thank you.
 

Piggies&buns

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AngeH

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Thanks very much Piggies&buns, I really appreciate your response. I'd read through the links - I think I was hoping that as they calmed down again it might be still be ok. But I think deep down your answer is what I expected to hear. It's so sad :-(
 
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