Basically I want a thread where I can gush over this gorgeous guinea.
Aladdin is not coping great with the loss of his friend but it's not been long, he has a teddy now which he adores and has been chatting to. If I move it, he runs after it and checks it over when I put it down, and he has been sleeping pressed up against it. It's sad to watch, but also undeniably adorable.
He is eating well: he refused critical care this morning, but began devouring his hay as soon as I put him back into the cage, and has had some carrot and critical care this morning as well as lots of greens and pellets last night. Poos are good as well and although he is less active, he's still been moving about - there were even some popcorns last night - as he's been throwing his critical care bowl around. I scatter feed greens and pellets and all these have gone so he must have been moving at least a bit. I had a nice cuddle with morning and he had lots to say for himself which is nice as he seems quieter now, I assume it's as he now has nobody to talk to. His coat is shiny and his eyes are bright, and - best of all - I haven't heard any sneezing since yesterday morning, which is all good.
Love this little lad anyway...
* Not as in breeding, I don't breed and 110% support rescue, but just find genetics interesting .
he keeps trying to give hay to the teddy though which is a bit heartbreaking to watch: he picks up stray strands and then drops them at the toy, then does it again when the toy doesn't respond. Sad :(
As he's a lone pig (temporarily...I have exams coming up soon so am wanting to adopt him a friend after those are finished; getting another pig would be a nice reward for myself as well!) is there anything else I can do to entertain him besides lots of attention, scatter feeding, food toys (kebabs, treat balls etc.), radio on when I'm not there, soft toy, and possibly making the cage bigger? If I do make the cage* larger, it will have to be either an upstairs or downstairs extension as, due to space restrictions, increasing his space widthways isn't an option. Which would be best, up or down? Ramps aren't ideal but it's more enrichment at least.
Sorry for all the questions, but I've never had a single guinea pig before and don't want him to be unhappy.
As a side note, I've might actually get 2 younger ones if I achieve a certain grades in the subjects I'm not so good at: it means when Aladdin passes his friend won't be by itself and is also motivation for me.
*It's a C&C made without grids, just the plastic, and is just marginally larger than a 2*5.
ETA: This may be of interest to anyone facing a similar dilemma: Brenda M.Elliott, Neil E.Grunberg (Dec 2005). Effects of social and physical enrichment on open field activity differ in male and female Sprague–Dawley rats. Behavioural Brain Research, Volume 165(2) pages 187 - 196. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.bbr.2005.06.025
....The major findings from the current study were: (1) social enrichment has the greatest effect to improve performance (i.e., increased habituation) for both males and females and (2) the effects of enrichment overall generally appear to be greater for males than for females.
So basically, the best kind of enrichment is a buddy, and males are more likely to suffer more alone. Interesting!
A companion also means better health because they will move around more. I hope you are able to get companions!
I do hide greens and things and have done for a while....can piggies benefit from having digging boxes with soil in to rummage about in ?
- And got the T-shirt