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Anna, Pet Expert/Biologist
Category: Pet
Satisfied Customers: 11540
Experience:  40 yrs.: herps, pocket pets, rabbits, poultry, dogs, horses. Biology degree. Vet assistant.
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Anna, This may sound like a dumb question, but I think that

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This may sound like a dumb question, but I think that one of the Cavy (Thing 2) is bring bullied or something. Here is why: When I had the large wooden house in the cage he will stay up there and not come down except to drink. even to the point of peeing and pooping on top of the house and saturating the wood. When he came down to drink I would see him chased all around the cage by the Alpha Cavy (Goldie). His coat is dull and he hides in the tunnel now that I have taken the house out (it was stinking like you can not believe). a lot of chuttering (teeth chattering) and purring from the Alpha and even the beta cavy. I am concerned about him but I do not have anywhere else I can put him. Any thoughts on what dynamic may be happening?

This isn't a dumb question, and you are absolutely right about what is going on. All guinea pigs - male and female - must establish their place in the herd. Guinea pigs enter adolescence somewhere between 3 and 5 months of age. That's when the normal dominance squabbles begin. How serious these fights will be depends on the personalities of the individuals involved. Some are naturally submissive and will not fight at all. Others are highly dominant and don't want to give up until they win. Most are in-between, and settle the whole thing with some squabbles. Both males and females do this.

They do this in a number of ways - pushing, mounting, raising the hackles, going nose-to-nose while raising their heads higher and higher, and dragging their rumps on the floor to leave their scent. These are normal and harmless ways to establish dominance. How far dominance displays will go depends on the personalities of the individuals involved. Escalation of dominance struggles will be shown by some teeth chattering, pulling fur off each other, and noisy squabbles with no real biting.

If one cavy is too frightened to live a normal life, the teeth-chattering becomes severe, real biting is occurring, or the squabbling is non-stop, you must separate the them. Serious injuries can result, or Thing 2 may become so stressed that he gets sick or even dies. If you don't have another place to put him, I recommend finding him a new home. There is a cavy rescue group in your city, but at present, they are full and not taking any more guinea pigs until some are adopted. You may want to contact them to see if they can refer you elsewhere.

SAN ANTONIO, Texas 78240
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Here is another one - not as close to you. They don't list their status as to whether they are taking new cavies right now, but they do have other suggestions for re-homing.

Unfortunately, there are just too many guinea pigs that need homes and not enough homes to go around, but if you try all the options, you should be able to find him a place.


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