To get a companion, or not....

Rufus&Edward

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Hi all,

Our beloved piggy Rufus died a few weeks ago and we've been looking to adopt a boar to live with his brother, Edward, who is now alone. Edward is 4 years old, so a tricky age to know what to do as he could have 1 year left... or potentially 4+.

I've contacted probably 20+ rescues, various pets at homes stores re: their rehome section, and breeders and pet shops who may have older pigs ready to retire, I've even asked on a local Facebook group in case anyone else is in a similar position, but to no avail.

The few rescues that do have single boars for bonding and rehoming only have very young ones (6 months- 1 year old). When I've asked if they ever get older ones in, they have all said no- the oldest they tend to get is 1 year.

Which leads me to my dilemma:

Option 1: Adopt a younger boar (around 1 years old), but then inevitably have the same problem a few years down the line when the one I adopt will end up older and bereaved.
Option 2: Hold on and keep waiting in the hope that an older one becomes available somewhere, though this could be unlikely.
Option 3: Don't get a new pig, and Edward lives out his days as a single pig (which feels very unfair on him).

I'll be honest; I intend for Edward (and a potential new buddy) to be our last pigs so I'm just wary of starting up a never-ending cycle of guinea pigs if I adopt a younger one. But that aside, Edward's happiness is my priority. I have the opportunity to meet some younger pigs this weekend for bonding, but I just feel like I'd only be deferring the problem to a few years time.

Just wondering what others have done in a similar situation? I figured this can't be an uncommon problem...
 

Wiebke

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Hi all,

Our beloved piggy Rufus died a few weeks ago and we've been looking to adopt a boar to live with his brother, Edward, who is now alone. Edward is 4 years old, so a tricky age to know what to do as he could have 1 year left... or potentially 4+.

I've contacted probably 20+ rescues, various pets at homes stores re: their rehome section, and breeders and pet shops who may have older pigs ready to retire, I've even asked on a local Facebook group in case anyone else is in a similar position, but to no avail.

The few rescues that do have single boars for bonding and rehoming only have very young ones (6 months- 1 year old). When I've asked if they ever get older ones in, they have all said no- the oldest they tend to get is 1 year.

Which leads me to my dilemma:

Option 1: Adopt a younger boar (around 1 years old), but then inevitably have the same problem a few years down the line when the one I adopt will end up older and bereaved.
Option 2: Hold on and keep waiting in the hope that an older one becomes available somewhere, though this could be unlikely.
Option 3: Don't get a new pig, and Edward lives out his days as a single pig (which feels very unfair on him).

I'll be honest; I intend for Edward (and a potential new buddy) to be our last pigs so I'm just wary of starting up a never-ending cycle of guinea pigs if I adopt a younger one. But that aside, Edward's happiness is my priority. I have the opportunity to meet some younger pigs this weekend for bonding, but I just feel like I'd only be deferring the problem to a few years time.

Just wondering what others have done in a similar situation? I figured this can't be an uncommon problem...
Hi!

I am very sorry for your loss!

If you want to stop with guinea pigs after Edward, then some guinea pig rescues operate schemes where the companion reverts to the rescue after the death of your piggy to look for a forever home from there. Older boars in rescue do turn up but they are much rarer because they are very often the lucky loved ones who are well cared for. Teenage boys make the majority of rescue piggies...

If you would like to continue but not with playing the 'pair teeter totter', then I would recommend that you consider adopting a younger bonded pair of sows with Edward living next to them with interaction and stimulation through the bars. He would certainly love that!
This means that you have much more options when one of the sows dies (another sow or neutered boar for company). But if you are happier with boars, a bonded young adult boar pair past the worst of teenage may also be something for you to consider.
Single Guinea Pigs - Challenges and Responsibilities

Please note that anybody in this country can call themselves a rescue or a breeder (and any shade in between) without licensing or supervision so we can only guarantee for our carefully vetted recommended good welfare standard rescues. With anybody else you are very much on your own and the risks are all on your side. The same goes for free-ads.
Rescue Locator

All the best!
 

Rufus&Edward

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Hi!

If you want to stop with guinea pigs after Edward, then some guinea pig rescues operate schemes where the companion reverts to the rescue to look for a forever home from there. Older boars in rescue do turn up but they are much rarer because they are vey often the lucky loved ones who are well cared for.

If you would like to continue but not with playing the 'pair teeter totter', then I would recommend that you consider adopting a younger bonded pair of sows with Edward living next to them with interaction and stimulation through the bars. He would certainly love that!
This means that you have much more options when one of the sows dies (another sow or neutered boar for company). But if you are happier with boars, a bonded young adult boar pair past the worst of teenage may also be something for you to consider.
Single Guinea Pigs - Challenges and Responsibilities

Please note that anybody in this country can call themselves a rescue or a breeder (and any shade in between) without licensing or supervision so we can only guarantee for our carefully vetted recommended good welfare standard rescues. With anybody else you are very much on your own and the risks are all on your side. The same goes for free-ads.
Rescue Locator

All the best!
Thank you so much for coming to the rescue again @Wiebke :) I'm now reading through your guide with great interest. I've actually lined up a dating/bonding session this weekend at a rescue where there are 3 boars currently available (however all are aged under 18 months). I will ask whether they have a scheme where you can return them... however if I'm honest I know I will get attached to a pig that I bring home, and I wouldn't be able to give them up. I have a tendency to get very attached to my pets (which is of course a good thing!) and I wouldn't like to feel like a piggy's life is on loan until it no longer suits :) I would however certainly like to have the option for them to return if they do not get on after coming home, so I shall ask.
 

Wiebke

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Thank you so much for coming to the rescue again @Wiebke :) I'm now reading through your guide with great interest. I've actually lined up a dating/bonding session this weekend at a rescue where there are 3 boars currently available (however all are aged under 18 months). I will ask whether they have a scheme where you can return them... however if I'm honest I know I will get attached to a pig that I bring home, and I wouldn't be able to give them up. I have a tendency to get very attached to my pets (which is of course a good thing!) and I wouldn't like to feel like a piggy's life is on loan until it no longer suits :) I would however certainly like to have the option for them to return if they do not get on after coming home, so I shall ask.
If you want to continue with a younger boar, you may want to consider whether it is worth having him neutered so you have got a lot more options when the time comes.

Fingers crossed that Edward will click with one of them!
 

Rufus&Edward

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Ted's speed dating session went really well tonight, and we decided to bring home Leo, who is just under 2 years old. They instantly clicked and were snuggling up together and happily sharing food. It was clear how much Ted enjoyed having a buddy again, so I think we've made the right decision. Will be keeping a close eye on them to make sure they're still happy together, but it's looking good so far :luv: He's a cuddly lad and super friendly.
 

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Wiebke

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Ted's speed dating session went really well tonight, and we decided to bring home Leo, who is just under 2 years old. They instantly clicked and were snuggling up together and happily sharing food. It was clear how much Ted enjoyed having a buddy again, so I think we've made the right decision. Will be keeping a close eye on them to make sure they're still happy together, but it's looking good so far :luv: He's a cuddly lad and super friendly.
When you see bereaved piggy happy again and having their sparkle back, you know just how much companionship means to them! Glad that it was a meeting of two hearts!
 

Rufus&Edward

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When you see bereaved piggy happy again and having their sparkle back, you know just how much companionship means to them! Glad that it was a meeting of two hearts!
It was lovely to see. The lady at the rescue said she doesn't often see piggies bond that quickly, so hopefully that's a good sign. There's a bit of teeth chattering going on now they're home in the hutch, so I'm keeping an eye on them. They're not doing it for long though, and I thought it would take a bit of time for them to get settled together.
 
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