The girls on the other hand turned out just the opposite. Last night, while there was some teeth chattering and chasing, everything was pretty quiet. However, just now as I was at the computer, a huge ruckus was going between the 2 girls. Lady J is a young sow and my Moki is 2 and is a huge pushy pig. Lady J is pretty laid back, but I think Moki pushed her over the brink. Fur was flying, as well as large amounts of carefresh, and they were both interlocked in a tumbling, flying ball of 2 piggers. Lady J is fine, no damage done that I can see. I haven´t yet checked Moki, but she appears OK. I immediately jumped up and clapped my hands so hard they hurt now. I ran and grabbed the dust pan and kept them separate until I could pick up Lady J. I then put up a divider in their 2 x 5 C&C cage. I just hope in time they will be able to get along. I´ve read all the posts regarding this topic lately, but don´t know how soon I should try introducing them again. Since Cocoa my 5 year old sow had to be put to sleep this morning (see post on Ovarian Cysts), Moki and Lady J are all by themselves. All is quiet right now with the divider up and they are both munching on their Romaine.
Don´t know how you can tell her. When one of our pigs dies at home, we leave the body in the condo in state for a couple of hours so all the pigs can see what happened. Usually a couple will cuddle up as though to keep the gone pig warm but in time will leave. The other pigs do come by and seem to understand. When a pig dies at the vet (surgery)there is always another pig with them for company. I assume the company pig relates the bad news to the pigs at home.
Moki might be holding Cocoa´s place. You will probably have to do a slow introduction to compensate for Moki not knowing what happened to Cocoa.
Also, Moki and Lady J are not drinking much water. I am giving them extra romaine because of this. I wonder if they are too busy trying to get at each other, combined with the new situation for Moki that Cocoa is gone, and for Lady J being in a new enviroment. At what point should I be overly concerned regarding the decreased food and water intake for both of them? I don´t know how much Lady J drank before so I have nothing to go on. Moki has lost 2.4 ouces since Sunday.
Pigpal - do you remember how much Lady J ate and drank/day? She is so sweet, but I think she is scared. Any idea about how old she is? She looks so young to have been a mama, but I hear so many horror stories about young ones getting pregnant. She looks to be a baby herself. What fruits and veggies did you give her? So far she likes romaine, baby carrots and cucumbers, and her vitamin C tablet. Anything you can tell me about her would be appreciated.
I don´t know if these 2 will ever get along. Does anyone know if this pacing back and forth will cease or do I need to make separate cages, in separate areas?
On a happier note, little Sake gets along great with his new big brother Frosty. I am still syringe feeding Frosty though, it is week 5.
She has always been used to living in group (herd) situations, so it may be rather difficult at first to adapt to being with just one other. The herd dynamic is very different from a cage with just a couple of pigs. How large is the cage they´ll be in and how many houses etc.? I wonder if a cozy would help her feel more secure, something she could snuggle in?
She was a very efficient and protective Mom, and could be a little snippy with the other Moms if they interfered with her while she was busy with her babies. However, she let her babies nurse from the other Moms and was always snuggled up in a house with at least one other Mom. Lady J was best buddies with Big Black Mama, who was the last to have her babies and spent a lot of time hanging out in the houses while the others were busy nursing. I still have poor shy Black Mama and her babies and am trying very hard to find a way to keep her myself.
All the Hollister pigs I fostered seemed to need physical contact with other pigs, they huddled a lot, both in and out of the houses. I think the motivation for her to settle down and work out a relationship is strong, but they will have be together to do that.
In my opinion a barrier is just frustrating their efforts. Do you have a large neutral area you let them loose in for an extended period of several hours? Maybe a bathroom or kitchen floor? I would try to let them have some time to work on this, without intervening if possible. You would need to keep an eye on them, just in case of serious trouble. Short of tearing each others throats out I would try to stay out of it, though I know that´s easy to say and very hard to do.
Keep us updated and feel free to email me if I can be of further help. pigpal2U@yahoo.com
When they are together (without me holding them) they soon get into a fur flying brawl. I have NOT seen any wounds, only 1 hunk of fur and some loose hair in the bedding. They sound and act like they want to kill each other when they are fighting. I want to take down the barrier so bad. They also seem like they want to be together, as they both hang out at the divider almost all day.
Thanks for the veggie and fruit info. It makes it easier if I know what she likes. I will make a new cozy for her today. I must have upwards of 20 yards of Polar Fleece so I´m certain I can find her the right color she likes! There are 3 huts in the cage when the divider isn´t in.
I will try the bathroom floor later today. It is a large bathroom with a tile floor. When they get into the rip roaring fight, should I separate them totally or just put the dust pan in so they can´t get to each other for the moment and then let them stay together to try again?
Oh, and they are in a 2 x 5 C&C cage (with a divider right now though).
While Moki has lost a few ounces, Lady J has remained at 1# 12.8 ounces since I got her on Sunday. She is the smallest "adult" I´ve ever had. Any idea about her age?
I would use the dustpan to separate them only if I saw blood. Otherwise let them break apart naturally. Loose fur is not so bad in the grand scheme of things. Let them try again as soon as they have regained their composure.
A 2 X 5 cage should be fine, I missed that in your earlier post, sorry.
I also forgot dandelion leaves and chickweed, big favorites.
Maybe there´s hope yet!!! THanks for the suggestions Pigpal.
It´s interesting to hear Pigpal say that. I agree. I have heard others say that dividers help pigs get used to each other´s smells during introduction... but in my experience, dividers don´t do much to settle warring parties down. They remain at odds when put back together again.
Thanks for all the help. I´ve never encountered 2 pigs that really fight each other. I thought I would have problems with Frosty and Sake not the 2 girls.
You´re there. Guess it depends on how brave you are. I would make sure the hay rack was quite comfortable.
Things are much better, and maybe Moki will learn not to be such a bully. She really needs Lady J to be her friend, as I believe she misses Cocoa. Could the chasing without the teeth chattering actually be playing?
I took the towels out I had put in the cage yesterday, and will switch back to the carefresh. Towels just smell too yucky in such a short time. I guess that is a benefit with carefresh. I think I will sew up some small towels to go under their huts and under the hay rack to keep the carefresh cleaner longer. With 2 big cages now, that´s 2 bags of Carefresh a week.
I know this must be very hard for you, but they´re guinea pigs and this how they often deal with new relationships. It would be nice if they could sit down and have a civilized airing of their concerns and reservations about each other instead!
Hydrogen peroxide can be rather harsh, I like to use hibitane and put a very little triple antibiotic ointment on scratches and small bites. Is bactine something like hibitane?
You were definitely right about not putting the divider back up.