We've had our Oscar for a year now, and are thinking about getting him a piggy friend. I always thought it would be a good idea for him to have a friend because, I've read that they are happier in pairs, but my mother disagreed when I asked her if we could adopt another guinea pig as she was afraid that if one got sick, the other would get sick too, because they would both be in the same cage. Now she thinks that he would be happier with a friend. I also did some research and found out that if we did adopt a guinea pig, it would need to be male that is passive, because Oscar is aggressive. How would we be able to determine if a guinea pig is passive?
Here are some details about Oscar:
We adopted him at a pet store, believe that he is around 3-4 years old
He growls when he is touched, (makes a loud vibrating noise that sounds like a growl) and will sometimes bite.
He likes his space, and is very territorial. he'll growl if we are in his cage refilling his food and will sometimes chatter his teeth at us. His cage seems like it is big enough for another guinea pig. I am not sure if we will be purchasing a bigger cage if we decide to adopt another.
When we take him out for floortime, he likes to play with us, and when we are not around he will just lay there on the floor. We think he could be lonely and depressed and most of the time he will just lay down in his cage anyway.
We may or may not adopt another guinea pig for him, but would also like to know what would be best for him.
- And got the T-shirt
The best way to find a pal for him is to locate a guinea pig rescue somewhere near you that will let you bring him in for a "meet and greet," and let him pick out his own friend.
You will need a large cage for two boars -- at least 10 square feet. Bigger would be better. They're more territorial than sows, so they need room to move around with getting in each other's face. And definitely don't try to put two boars in a cage that's too small.
Just as reassurance for your mom, guinea pigs rarely catch diseases from each other. Over the years, some of mine have had URIs or UTIs, but no other pig has ever caught anything from one that was sick.
The biting is a little concerning, since most guinea pigs don't do that. Has he ever been treated for mites? Does he scratch a lot?
Taking him to a guinea pig rescue for a meet and greet sounds like a great idea. Will definitely need to get a bigger cage if we decide to adopt another.
When he bites, it's not hard which makes me think it may be playful biting. He was treated for mites last year. He will scratch and bite his sides, and occasionally he will scratch his ears too, but there are no signs of hair loss. He also had an ear infection which was treated for as well but he will still show signs such as head-shaking when touched near his ear and scratching his ears.
One thing it is important to note is that how he reacts to you has no bearing on how he will treat another pig. He might be pushy and energetic with his interactions with people and be a total marshmallow when it comes to guinea pigs. You can't predict his behavior. The only way is to do a proper greeting with another pig in a neutral area. Some older males will be very protective of a younger pig also, so if an adult doesn't work out, you might be able to pair him with a baby. You might just find out you have a total "Nanny Man!"
I don't think he needs a bath.
You can also treat mites with revolution, but that needs a prescription from a veterinarian.