Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Trial Separation

Guinea pigs are hard wired to drive out sick members from the herd.  In the wild that makes a lot of sense, especially if the illness is contagious.  With a caretaker it's not necessary, but it's hard to tell a guinea pig that.  Occasionally you'll find a guinea pig that will protect or care for a sick cagemate.  Wedgwood is not that pig.

I allowed Wedgie to oust Boadicea from hay or a the choice sleeping spot knowing there was more hay and cozies.  But when Wedgie harassed Boadi just for the sake of moving her along, I knew I needed to pull out the backup cage (amusingly called the pigeon cage).

I feared once separated, I'd never get them back together again.  Turned out not to be the case.  A day or two later, when I cleaned the main cage, I let them on the floor together.  They both returned to the clean cage and were happy. 

I've left the second cage set up, because it's only a matter of time before Wedg becomes a bully again.  For now, there's peace in this house.  I am content.


7 comments :

  1. I never think of guinea pigs in the wild. That was interesting to know, and amusingly written.

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  2. Aww, poor Boadi! Interesting, I didn't know that but it makes total sense. I suppose I've been lucky so far, as both times my guinea pigs were sick the others seemed to dote on them. Queen Fergie even gave up her beloved cuddle cave to cagemate Astrid a couple weeks ago after a biopsy surgery.

    I am glad they are living in harmony momentarily and hopefully Wedgwood won't be too mean in the future. Silly pigs!

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  3. As I sometimes tell a harassing goat: "This is NOT an attractive aspect of your personality!" I expect Wedgwood would be exactly as impressed by this stern scolding as my goats are. Sigh.
    I hope Boadi is feeling well :)

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  4. So true. My birds very similar. A sick bird is knocked down by cagemates,even bonded pairs. I had a backup cage for a bird hospital, set up with a lightbulb shining in for warmth. If the parakeet did well, the others were fine with her. Sad for humans to witness, but yes, a survival mechanism.

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  5. I always thought that a sick piggie would be driven out, but a few years ago Poppy got ever so clingy with her cagemate Coco and we couldn't work out why. A week or so later we discovered a lump on Coco's hip, we rushed her to the vet and and she was diagnosed with a sarcoma. I think that Poppy was sending us a big signal that something was wrong, I wish we'd realised, because poor Coco passed away a couple of weeks after surgery :(
    I keep a really close eye on any change in behaviour now, even the smallest thing, because maybe one of my girls knows something I don't xx

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  6. Loved your entries to the blog festival, btw; of course I am especially partial to the feathers. Yes that squid is quite something...the talent is always amazing. Sorry the little guys are not getting along always...they have their moments just like humans, I guess. The survival of the fittest thing too.

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  7. they were "on a break" like Ross and Rachel lol.

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