I have 5 Guinea Pigs, I sometimes add a "plus 1", as Bean, who lives with a good friend of mine, is practically my Pig as well (She took him in moments before I was going to).
I've always had pets, cats, dogs, and a couple hamsters. However, my fiancé at the time wanted a Guinea Pig. So I adopted Shepard:
A Rex Guinea Pig I believe(?), she's very energetic to the point where when she popcorns, she'll jump so high she has a hard time landing.
A bit bigger now, she was born in February of 2014.
She's the fattest and loudest of the herd, probably because she's my first Pig.
She enjoys being pet down her back or getting a brushing, she's not really one for ear scratches like the others.
She's still occasionally skittish and moody. Shepard may also have nights where she'll chirp or sing all night (cute when I don't have work the next morning).
Once I adopted Shepard I became worried she was getting lonely since I had both school and work. So, I found someone on campus who was trying to find a home for her Guinea Pig, enter Zelda:
Born around November 2013, this beautiful Abyssinian was primarily in the care of two five-year-olds and her parents seemed in over their heads (accidental breeding). Because of what I presume to be a bit of a semi-rough start being in a small cage with 3 other pigs (males too), she's very shy and skittish. I only handle her when I need to. She'll eat out of my hand, let me trim her nails, and on occasion, I can carefully scratch her ears, though this took a bit of trust building.
Sadly she does often get into fights with the other pigs, usually out of dominance, this does seem to stress her out a bit.
That said, she does seem to do well on the whole, I just have to keep an eye on her to make sure she's not losing fur or getting too stressed.
(Note that these pictures were taken over a year apart and her fur remains the same)
Finally, after a while, I noticed she was bulging on the sides... I was worried it was some kind of growth, as it turns out, it was a growth of a sort... she was pregnant. Her previous owners left her in the cage with the males too long. But I'll get to that in a bit, next off (chronologically anyway) is Bean.
The Guinea pigs were doing well and stayed at my place, however, after seeing me have Guinea Pigs my Fiancé decided to get a Guinea Pig for her place.
The small store I adopted Shepard from had another Pig that had been there for a while sadly. This pig sat lonely in his own glass cage on his own not long after being born around September of 2013 and was actually discounted since nobody wanted him. His eye was damaged, presumably from a fight with a cage-mate, and now since he was older and "not as cute" as the younger pigs, he was being left alone.
My Fiancé and I went to the store and I looked at the lonely pig just laying down with his dried out left eye, and I said, "I'm taking him home or you are." Sure enough, she happily took him home and named him "Sir" Bean:
We promptly brought him to a vet about his eye, turns out it just needs some ointment to keep it moist as the tear duct seems to no longer work, also he may be impaired or even blind in that eye. Even so, Bean does extremely well.
He is obnoxiously lazy, trustworthy, and cuddly. He will sleep on your lap for more than in hour at a time, sometimes to the point where he snores.
My fiancé, after consideration, she carefully had a little meet and greet with the tiny cat in the house, he just ran up to the cat to check him out. The car, who's only a tiny bit bigger than Bean is, became scared of Bean ever since.
After a while, we even brought him back to the vet to see if he was sleepy and lazy because he was sick, and nope "he's just a lazy pig."
He has gotten two infections, one just last week requiring getting shots, he never likes that, however, he does enjoy the attention from the people at the Vet's office as they all love Bean.
So Zelda was fully pregnant now, I introduced myself to every bit of online research I could regarding pregnancy, birth, gender identification, sexual maturity, diet, weight, etc.
Finally on May 14th, 2014, Zelda had three healthy pups (which me and my fiancé both witnessed):
From left to right (also oldest to youngest in a sense), we have Navi, Lucy, and Spud. We didn't name them until a few days later after we had a decent idea of their genders, which we confirmed as they grew.
We had them under a warm lamp (it can be cold up here) and Zelda took good care of the three.
Hyper, loud, and so cute, these three were eating alfalfa and pellets on the first day.
"Turn on a guinea pig popcorn machine", is what I believe I said at one point, as these nuggets were bouncing all over the place.
Sadly they did grow older and that meant, Spud now had to leave.
She's the smartest and quietest of the three. Navi is extremely friendly and loves chin scratches more than anything else. She's kinda odd in the sense she doesn't mind being picked up or handled at all, unlike every other pig I know.
Navi and Spud are my spoiled children.
She's quite moody, she'll go from being very cuddly and friendly, grooming the others, asking for pets, to asserting her dominance, or being scared of anything in a heartbeat.
I was actually supposed to give her to a friend, however, I never got the chance to, as my had to friend move away.
Spud, being a male, couldn't stay in the same cage as my females here, so my Fiancé took him in with Bean. The introduction went very well, so they settled in well for a while.
However, "Nothing gold can stay", Spud eventually proved too assertive for the atypically relaxed Bean. We tried a few different things we researched about online, however, nothing quite worked, we didn't want to try neutering as we weren't completely comfortable with it. After Bean showed fur loss and even some bite marks on his nose, it was time for Spud to be rehomed.
I had been working a bit more and had upgraded my pigs cage to a larger 6x2 C&C cage for my 4 females, I also had space and another relatively large cage. That in mind, I opted to take Spud back in a separate cage, the cost wasn't an issue, it just didn't feel right having Spud rehomed again to a place where I'll never see him again.
He's now living happily with me.
Spud was already used to me so it didn't take long for him to warm up to his new home. He is pretty relaxed, but very much an attention seeker, he will actually chatter his teeth sometimes if he wants out of his cage or if he see's me with another pig. When I walk home from school/work, the first thing I see when I walk in my room is his two beady eyes staring out at me from his cage (which is pretty high up off the floor right next to my desk). I need to get him a bigger cage still as the move was very recent, his store bought cage is about ~3ft by ~1.5ft, it was meant for "two or more" pigs when we bought it, but honestly, I think he should be in a bigger roaming space (my females have a large 6x2 grid c&c cage so about 2.5ft by 9.5ft).
He's in a cage by himself sadly, however, since I'm quite sick I'm home very often and therefore I spend a lot of time with Spud, which he seems to appreciate.
For now, though he seems to be quite content.
I have had other small pets before, but I still never believed Guinea Pigs could have such diverse and vibrant personalities. Each one is particular on how (and where) they're pet, they have their own temperaments, and even different curiosity and energy levels.
Since they were each raised together (mostly) I wouldn't have expected them to be so unique. It creates a fun atmosphere that keeps things interesting.
P.S. I'm bad at typing, I meant *Cat* not *car* whilst referencing Beans size.