Super Young Piggie! Problems?

rinlalin

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hello all! as some of you may know, i'm a new-ish guinea pig owner. (backstory, the short version: got a guinea when i was 9/10, went to school, my grandma (who hated the poor little guy) drove it to the pet store and gave it to a random kid in the parking lot before i got home)

i just got a piggie two weeks ago and thought he was just an absurdly small 3-4 month old baby, but when i went back to see him in quarantine at petsmart today (he had a URI and is currently being cared for) the lady told me he's only 3-4 WEEKS old! is he okay to be away from his momma? there's no way I can get him back to her, but i just want to know.

i have 6 cats (friendly! don't worry) and i know for them, they didn't stop nursing until they were two-ish months old. it just feels super weird because i just thought he was a runt. turns out he's a baby, literally!

any advice for his age? and will his young age make it easier to bond with him since he's only, basically, just been born?

here's a photo below of my little boy, bootsy. he fits in the palm of my hand.

79B0A246-B962-4B66-87F6-09066B282B5D.jpeg

thanks in advance! much love.
 

HeatherRose

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I bought a pregnant guinea pig from petland in December. She had 2 boys and a girl. The boys had to be separated from her at a little less than 3 weeks old because they were getting pretty big and can start mating at that point. Guinea pigs only nurse for about 3-4 weeks, but i think they are not supposed to be totally separated from their mom until 6 weeks old. My boys could still interact with their mom through the bars. You say you got him two weeks ago, so was he 1-2 weeks old then!? Either way that is really young to be at a pet store I think. If you can, I would look into getting him a friend, he will probably do better with another guinea pig. He’s very cute, good luck with him!
 

Watchman

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Usually guinea pigs are safe to leave mum at 3 weeks. Males have to be seperated at that time anyway as they can become sexually active at that age.
 

rinlalin

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I bought a pregnant guinea pig from petland in December. She had 2 boys and a girl. The boys had to be separated from her at a little less than 3 weeks old because they were getting pretty big and can start mating at that point. Guinea pigs only nurse for about 3-4 weeks, but i think they are not supposed to be totally separated from their mom until 6 weeks old. My boys could still interact with their mom through the bars. You say you got him two weeks ago, so was he 1-2 weeks old then!? Either way that is really young to be at a pet store I think. If you can, I would look into getting him a friend, he will probably do better with another guinea pig. He’s very cute, good luck with him!
he's being cared for by the vet right now, but when i get him back i'll be buying him a friend. i think 2 weeks ago he was only 2 weeks old! he was SUPER small and even now if we compare him to the others he's half their size and those are the ones that are 3-4 months old. thanks for the input!
 

rinlalin

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Usually guinea pigs are safe to leave mum at 3 weeks. Males have to be seperated at that time anyway as they can become sexually active at that age.
thanks a bunch! they're so much different than all the other animals i'm used to caring for. it's like a whole new experience! where cats and dogs and etc are all the same.
 

Freela

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Guinea pigs give birth to precocious young, i.e. newborns with teeth, fur, open eyes, and able to walk around. Because of this, they are ready to leave their mother much earlier than most other mammals. Males reach reproductive age around 3 weeks and need to be separated from mom at that point. So having pigs made available for sale at 3 or 4 weeks old is not unusual. We got Leela at around 4 weeks of age... she was the same size as our Syrian hamster.
 
D

DM161119

My guinea pigs are still baby's I got them on my 10 birthday me and my got them when I first saw them I know that I will love them so my mom bought it for me and when we got home we forgot the water bottle 😂😂😂😂😂 so we went to the store and I was mad it took a long time to get back anyway I was happy with fluffy and miu miu
 

Wiebke

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hello all! as some of you may know, i'm a new-ish guinea pig owner. (backstory, the short version: got a guinea when i was 9/10, went to school, my grandma (who hated the poor little guy) drove it to the pet store and gave it to a random kid in the parking lot before i got home)

i just got a piggie two weeks ago and thought he was just an absurdly small 3-4 month old baby, but when i went back to see him in quarantine at petsmart today (he had a URI and is currently being cared for) the lady told me he's only 3-4 WEEKS old! is he okay to be away from his momma? there's no way I can get him back to her, but i just want to know.

i have 6 cats (friendly! don't worry) and i know for them, they didn't stop nursing until they were two-ish months old. it just feels super weird because i just thought he was a runt. turns out he's a baby, literally!

any advice for his age? and will his young age make it easier to bond with him since he's only, basically, just been born?

here's a photo below of my little boy, bootsy. he fits in the palm of my hand.

View attachment 86969

thanks in advance! much love.
Hi and welcome!

3-4 weeks is weaning age and your little one should be eating normal food, but what your baby urgently needs is a same sex companion for comfort and socialising. Guinea pigs are group animals and should not be kept on their own; at this young age they are especially desperate for the protection and guidance from an older piggy. It is the biggest gift you can ever make it!
PS: the average weight for a 3 week old is 250g but as the birth weight ranges from 40-120g, baby sizes can vary enormously. As long as your little one is well in themselves and is putting on weight every week, they are doing fine.
https://www.theguineapigforum.co.uk/threads/sexing-separating-baby-boars-and-rehoming-babies.109391/

Please always double-check the gender of both piggies before introducing.
What to check and look out for in new guinea pigs (vet checks, sexing, parasites&illness)
Arrival in a home from the perspective of pet shop guinea pigs
Companionship
Bonding and Interaction: Illustrated social behaviours and bonding dynamics (includes a chapter on baby bonding with videos)

A lot has changed in the last years as welfare standards (cage size, diet, enrichment etc) and the understanding of guinea pigs as a species in their own right have improved.
You may find our new owners guide collection (of which the guides above are all part of) a good resource to catch up on developments and give your little baby the best and happiest life you can. Any book is currently very quickly outdated; our guide format allows us to keep up with any new insights. The guides have been specially written for new owners. They are as practical and informative as possible and aim to specifically answer the most often asked questions, concerns and challenges new owners are faced with and that are often glossed over in other literature: Getting Started - New Owners' Most Helpful Guides

I would also strongly recommend to start saving up for a vet fund as an integral part of the weekly/monthly living cost, so you are not caught out badly in an emergency or serious but treatable illness, which can quickly run into hundreds of pounds or dollars. If you are based in the US, vet fees are usually payable upfront, which can cause major distress and leads to many piggies dying miserably and in pain unnecessarily.

We can also help you better if you please added your country, state/province or UK county to location your account details (via clicking on your username on the top bar) so we can tailor any advice straight away to what is relevant and available where you are (climate, background, vet and rescue access, differing brand names etc.)
We are UK based but have members and enquiries from all the world. This makes your location appear with every post you make and allows personalised support straight away. Our default advice is UK based. Thank you!
 

VickiA

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My guinea pigs are still baby's I got them on my 10 birthday me and my got them when I first saw them I know that I will love them so my mom bought it for me and when we got home we forgot the water bottle 😂😂😂😂😂 so we went to the store and I was mad it took a long time to get back anyway I was happy with fluffy and miu miu
Oh they are lovely. How long have you had them?
 
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