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Celine298

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Hey guys,I wasn't sure where to post this one so I'm going with daily care!

I'm a Mum to a solo pig, Sunny. Yep, that's right, I have one boar. I know it's ideal to keep two pigs or more for company, and I'll admit I was worried as to how he would get on by himself. My intention is to wait until he's out of puberty (he's 8 months old) before introducing another playmate, just to get the hormones settled.

But so far, despite all I have read online, he seems to be quite enjoying the Lone Free Ranger Lifestyle!

I have his cage decked out to the last with all manner of gizmos: dangling chew toys, multiple hidies, hay and veg dispensers, tunnels, teddies etc. When I give his cage a big clean once a week, everything gets changed around and he spends a good ten minutes exploring each time.

Every day, I set up a massive run for him on the living room floor using cardboard boxes and tubes. It's never the same way twice and I often hide food in various corners for him to sniff out. There's a lot of popcorning done!

Then we have cuddle time, where he sits snuggled into my cardigan or a blanket tight beside me on the sofa. He burbles like crazy when I scratch his back and will spend the guts of an hour sucking my fingers.

We also keep his cage in the bay window in our sitting room, so he can see us all the time and is used to noises like people chattering and the TV.

All and all, he seems to be a contented little piggy, despite being on his own! I suppose it depends on the temperament of the pig and their personality, but I just said I'd throw this up to let anyone else with a lone pig know it's possible for them to be on their own and happy!
 

Anarchybmc

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Well he sounds like a very spoilt piggy :D

I have recently adopted a lone boar but in my case he was so depressed he wouldn't move around much maybe the equivalent to a 1x2 grid space :no: not so much as a popcorn in sight! So we decided to get him a friend from BARC this was the best decision we have ever made, his personality change is amazing and now he popcorns yay........ I have always had pairs of boys though so I knew that there was a huge difference in his behaviour compared to my others no matter how much human attention he got. But I have also read that a few people can keep lone piggies with no problems, I think that tends to be next to another piggies cages for the interaction though, I think you will be amazed in the difference when you get him a playmate honestly, I would say my Oakley is about 8-12 months old and he was paired with a 9 week old baby both are happy Oakley is top piggy but Ollie lets him his just happy to follow him everywhere!

image.jpeg
 

The3LittlePigs

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When our boar was on his own, he seemed happy enough, however it was only when we got the dynamic duo when we realised how happy he actually could be with a little company. Though he was always active and vocal and energetic on his own, it was only after he got companions that his true colours shone, and we saw him popcorning around and snuggling up to them like he'd known them all his life. So, in that respect I agree with the above, but I know it can be different for everyone c:
 

Wiebke

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With an only boar, you can always consider neutering if you have got access to a good vet (crucial!) so he can live with a sow or two after a 6 weeks post-op wait to be 100% safe around sows, or a live-alongside companion if the two boars don't get along. Character compatibility is key to any successful guinea pig bond. If you haven't got access to place that allows you to date your boy (not easy in Ireland where you don't have much in the way of piggy savvy good standard rescues), then you always have to have a plan B at the ready when by necessity you are getting a companion of YOUR and not HIS choice, in case it doesn't work out.

Some guinea pigs that have been separated very early on and been kept alone without contact with their own kind can lose the ability to perceive themselves as guinea pigs. Generally, guinea pigs are always happier if they have interaction with their own kind, even if it is just through the bars for round the clock stimulation, as they have got a very differentiated and much more intricate social life and interaction than previously assumed. Humans just can't fill that need, as much as we try - and you are admittedly doing a lot.
 

smileyface:)

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sounds like he has a very loving home!
My boy Chewy was alone at first as I got him from a pet shop where he was in the 'needs a home' section, and he couldnt go in with my two boys - but I always intended to get him a wife, he was so quiet by himself and it wasn't until I got Poppy from a rescue,and he was past the safe time from his neutering op, that his personality came out - from the word go he just wanted to follow her about and talk to her (she is top dog!) and as she's more confident he is happier to venture out more when out in the run instead of hiding in the igloos. I am sure there are case where a lone piggy could be happy but it's amazing how they change when they are with another piggie too!:)
 

Anarchybmc

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sounds like he has a very loving home!
My boy Chewy was alone at first as I got him from a pet shop where he was in the 'needs a home' section, and he couldnt go in with my two boys - but I always intended to get him a wife, he was so quiet by himself and it wasn't until I got Poppy from a rescue,and he was past the safe time from his neutering op, that his personality came out - from the word go he just wanted to follow her about and talk to her (she is top dog!) and as she's more confident he is happier to venture out more when out in the run instead of hiding in the igloos. I am sure there are case where a lone piggy could be happy but it's amazing how they change when they are with another piggie too!:)
:agr:

Ps Ive got a chewy too :D
 

Celine298

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I fully plan on getting a friend for my Sunny, but I read that if you wait until they come out of their 'teenage' phase they will adapt to a new piggy quicker.

Sadly piggy dating is not a thing in Ireland at all, and they almost never get them into rescue centres here, so when I get another it will be just pot luck!

My boy is a cheeky poo, always up to mischief so I'd like to get a piggy with a similar naughty streak I'm hoping to get another boar as I don't really want to neuter him. They're so tiny I have a fear of something going wrong
 

Freela

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I had a solo pig as a child (her name was Caramel.) At the time, no one really talked about what the pigs' emotional needs or wants were. She got a lot of love, snacks, and got the run of the kitchen several times a day. I think we gave her a good life, but I do think she would likely have been happier with a friend, knowing what I know now. As an adult I've always had pairs of sows and have honestly been both amused and touched by the relationship that develops between them. I've seen everything from annoyance and sibling squabbles as babies/teens, to concern when a cagemate is sick or absent, and obvious grief and mourning when a friend is lost... I didn't see that range with my solo pig. There is a relationship there that I can't give, much as I would like to. I look at it this way, no matter how much love I give my piggies, I don't speak their language. If I lived with only them, I would love them, but I would still be happier with a human companion as well. I think it's great that you are giving him so much enrichment on his own, but I also think it's great that you're open to the option of a friend in the future. My experience is that you'll see a larger range of emotion/behavior from two pigs that you don't see when they don't have another of their species, which is gratifying to an owner as well!

Your little guy is a real cutie....his face looks a bit like one of my past piggies! :)
 

Celine298

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Thanks for all the advice guys! This is my first piggie but I know from having numerous pets throughout my life that human company is great but it's just not the same. My mother has a shih tzu who is spoilt rotten, but when he became a big brother to a stray kitten we found he got a whole new lease of life. Two years on they are inseparable and they both get distressed one one is missing!

I'm all for getting Sunny a companion but I'm also glad I had a little time with him alone to firm a good strong bond!

So hopefully he bonds well with a new cage mate :) ill kept you all updated on our adventures!
 
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