The Adventures of Frodo & Samwise

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Post   » Wed Feb 03, 2016 3:03 am

My partner and I recently adopted two boars from the LAGPR. I failed to get their ages and their backstories. We changed their names after adoption.

We got them on Saturday and they are still showing dominance displays on occasion; they were a bonded pair when we got them.

Frodo appears to be a typical American (previously named Zeus) and is very quick and tends to be on the more submissive side.


Samwise (previously named Hector) is slightly bigger and is a purebred teddy. He tends to be more dominant. He is much less skittish and while Frodo prefers sleeping and eating under covered places, he'll sleep and eat happily in open spaces. He does, however, show some long-term issues from his original owner (not LAGPR, but rather who they rescued him from), particularly in his back feet.


The photos taken were from their journey from the rescue, as we do not use shavings (we prefer paper in their kitchen, dubbed the "Green Dragon" and fleece in the rest of their cage, or "the Shire").

I'm a new cavy owner, but my partner has owned them before. (I'm used to cats; I've lived with and cared for 11 so far, and hamsters, of which I've had 7.) I'll admit, I'm pretty nervous, especially because I want them to enjoy their new space. I recorded their weight on day 0 [their rescue day] and I record what fresh greens they get daily.

On day 2, Frodo finally popped out of his fleece hiding spot and discovered the loft, which has a secondary food, water, and hiding spot, which made him immensely happy. He likes to chut while he runs up and down the ramp.

In the Green Dragon, they have two water bottles, two ceramic dishes for timothy pellets, and a hay bag for the timothy hay. Samwise likes to sleep here. (Which secretly concerns me because I worry he may be food aggressive.)

In Bag End, which is what we call the loft, is primarily Frodo's domain. It has hay shaped into a hidey home, a water bottle, a ceramic dish, and more timothy hay. Frodo tends to run up and down the ramp through out the day, and sometimes sleeps under the fleece on the first floor and sometimes sleeps in Bag End under the hay home.

During free-running (in a marked off pen outside their cage free of anything they could get at--wires, etc), Frodo tends to be immensely vocal (lots of wheeking!) and follows Sam around like glue. When we hold them and pet them, Sam usually flops over and falls asleep, while Frodo tends to wheek and will fall asleep if we keep him covered.

We've gotten some dominance displays from the both of them--mostly rumbling, chattering, nose offs, cheek rubbing, and butt wiggling. From what I've read, this all is pretty normal and not something to be concerned with, but I still get anxious about this. As their first week has gone on, they appear to be displaying less dominant displays. Typically, they end with Frodo displaying submission.

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Post   » Wed Feb 03, 2016 10:28 am

They are very handsome piggies and I am so glad they're settling in so well. Welcome to the wonderful world of a cavy slave. I look forward to hearing more about your journey together!

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Post   » Wed Feb 03, 2016 8:25 pm

Congrats on your latest family members. Thank you for adopting. Both boars are adorable and their living quarters sound like they each have space to have their own quiet time away from each other.

It looks like their personalities are slowly coming and I look forward to reading more about their antics. Fingers crossed that they continue to get along.


Post   » Wed Feb 03, 2016 9:05 pm

Thanks both of you!

I am very happy to provide a home. If we had the ability, I think my partner would aim for a second pair, haha!

It's fascinating to watch their changes day by day. Today was a major cage cleaning day, and this time, Samwise popcorned as well.

One of the things I didn't entirely expect is that Frodo really enjoys having a fleece blanket in which he can manipulate and move around.

Frodo is learning that the faucet means potential fresh greens (because they're washed first). He gets the most verbally excited for food. He's also starting to eat more in front of us. I put out some hay and he was too excited to care if I was in front of him, although if I move, he usually will bolt in the corner and wait until I'm still again. He's starting to take food from our hand as well, which is pretty heartening.


Post   » Thu Feb 04, 2016 7:39 pm


It took me a bit to figure out how to set up their run-around time. Much of our house isn't very cavy safe, so mostly it's up to the kitchen to be their running around place. I want to get more fleece to create a softer surface (and to catch their urine), but this is what I can do for now.

I also wanted to help promote more running around and exercise. Today they got some carrot, but usually they get various lettuces, as I want to help promote exploration and foraging. (They also get an amount earlier in the day; Frodo's gets his up in Bag End, where Sam won't go, and Sam gets his where he always is: Green Dragon. Today's greens were dandelion leaves and romaine.) There was little fighting over the carrots today, although at times they would run up and steal it from each other's mouths.

Frodo, especially, made lots of noise as he was wandering around and at one point, I shifted while eating my own lunch, and apparently spooked Samwise, as he bolted under the hide (Frodo didn't seem to care at all, because he kept eating).

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Post   » Thu Feb 04, 2016 8:54 pm

They certainly seem to be settling down and it is encouraging as you see your pigs get more used to you and be more confident.

I have a sow who hates coming out, although once out she'll relax and eat her vegetable snacks and generally very timid. After a year and constant food bribes, she'll now come out and stand and allow me to pet her in the cage, all out in the open.

Meanwhile, your boys look to be ok weightwise so you may want to take note that both dandelion and romaine have high calcium (and I'm sure some other mineral) that may make some pigs more prone to stones. Check out the diet info on the site, plus there's also a very detailed veg chart there.

And got the T-shirt

Post   » Thu Feb 04, 2016 9:02 pm

Actually, romaine is no higher in calcium than the other lettuces. There just something about the interaction of romaine and some pigs that causes excess urinary calcium, and that can contribute to stones. Your pig may or may not be one of the ones that has that problem, but red or green leaf lettuce would be a safer choice.


Post   » Thu Feb 04, 2016 9:17 pm

Today was their first day with romaine; they typically get red lettuce.

I do love Lynx's food chart! We keep printed food charts and other information in their binder so that we do not have to go to the laptop whenever we need to research information.

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