Guinea pigs hate living alone as they are social animals. But, when unbonded guinea pigs get to share their space, they start fighting.
Hence, bonding two guinea pigs prior to keeping them together is necessary. But how would you know if your guinea pigs are bonding well? What are some good signs of guinea pigs bonding together?
If two guinea pigs avoid each other when they first meet, it is not a problem. At least they are not fighting. Over time they will start communicating with each other and establish a hierarchy. Once they have decided their role in the cage, they will settle down and even start sharing their food and grooming each other.
There is no quick or easy process to develop a healthy relationship between guinea pigs. If you are not ready or confident, then do not try to do so.
You will need to learn dissolving fights and to be alert about them. However, it is rewarding to own a pair of happy guinea pigs than a lonely single guinea pig.
Is It Easy To Bond Guinea Pigs?
Guinea pigs are social animals. They do not enjoy living alone. Guinea pigs who live alone seek constant close attention. As there is an absence of encouragement that only their mate can offer them.
Once two guinea pigs are bonded, it can be difficult to separate those two. And if they are kept apart from each other, then both guinea pigs might get stressed out.
It is a different story altogether when guinea pigs are not bonded.
Guinea pigs are territorial creatures, and they might feel that their territory is being infiltrated if you get another guinea pig in their cage.
It is going to take some time before a bond between two guinea pigs gets established.
However, if you can bond two of them together then it is worth the effort.
You will always observe that your piggies are happy when they have a company.
They are less likely to feel lonely and will keep each other entertained and happy.
Having two guinea pigs as pets will also reduce your work.
They will groom and play with each other thus, and you needn’t dedicate extra time and effort for the same.
You will observe less stress in your guinea pigs.
Because guinea pigs quickly get stressed out, which leads to illness.
Bonded guinea pigs are less likely to stress out as they can company each other.
However, It is not true that guinea pigs who are bonded do not fight.
They fight exactly as our friends and siblings do. But, they know when to seek apologies and be friends again.
Things To Consider While Bonding Your Guinea Pigs
Be sure that before introducing two guinea pigs, they must be deprived of sexual attraction.
Never bond guinea pigs if one of them is paired with their gonads.
Those creatures carry lots of hormones in them and take their aggression out on other guinea pigs.
When blocking sex organs of guinea pigs gets done, they should only be bonded after six weeks of this task.
Hormones take time to get low, especially in male guinea pigs.
They do not quickly calm down right after sterilizing.
Step second is, thinking about the similarity between guinea pigs.
Usually, guinea pigs can create friendships.
More the similarity between guinea pigs, the more they like each other. Things to pay attention are as follows:
- Stage of life (age): Guinea pigs who are of the same age carry equal amounts of energy, which supports the procedure of togetherness. The life cycle of guinea pigs of the typical age group should be similar. Because, when guinea pigs lose their mates, it becomes very stressful for them.
- Healthiness: When two guinea pigs divide their food, cage then they also share a similar illness. Be sure that your piggies are durable and can fight diseases.
- Breed: There is no such thing that different breeds of guinea pigs can’t be friends, but it is easier to establish friendship when they are similar and to communicate efficiently.
- Nature: All guinea pigs have their uniqueness, and they carry different characteristics. So get an acceptable combination of guinea pigs as, if one of them likes to live alone and the other one is joyful, both will get mad at each other.
- Experience in life: If you are getting adult guinea pigs, they can carry old memories with other guinea pigs in their minds. So you must know about these things.
If you are getting your guinea pigs right from a shelter, you can get guinea pigs who are already friends, and if you are getting them from a local pet shop, you have to do the whole task by yourself.
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Can Same Gender Guinea Pigs Bond Together?
Guinea pigs who are of the same gender can be bonded. It has been said that specialists suggest getting pets of a different gender. They usually accept one another very easily.
If you decide to get a similar gender combination, you should get their sex organs blocked as soon as possible, specifically of male guinea pigs.
These male guinea pigs with unaltered sexual organs rule all over unless they are sterilized.
A couple of not sterilized female guinea pigs are also not less than any trouble. As said, these creatures are regional. Female guinea pigs will keep troubling and attacking each other.
Blocking their sexual organs will keep them calm.
How Long Does It Take For Guinea Pigs To Bond?
Before guinea pigs become friends, they take the first few minutes to introduce the dominator, and the other few minutes they identify each other.
Setting friendship is not as easy and fast, but if your guinea pigs are together after an hour, nothing is to worry about.
Mostly, real bonding takes a lot of time, and also it depends upon the nature and other features of guinea pigs pair.
When you observe your guinea pigs are consuming time to be friends, you can encourage them for bonding by giving more space and area to them.
Guinea pigs require a sufficient area of 7 to 8 sq. feet to live and do other activities.
Provide your guinea pigs a large enclosure or area where they can run, jump, or play.
If you find your guinea pigs are still angry or upset with each other, quickly offer them separate spaces.
Because if they are not ready to live together, then keeping them at the same place will not work, and it can even create problems.
Do Bonded Guinea Pigs Fight?
Yes, guinea pigs who have a good bond in between can also quarrel.
And if you observe that your guinea pigs are chasing each other, that means a fight is going to occur.
Follow and chase has different meanings.
Hume guinea pigs always follow the dominant partner. Whereas tracing is a hint that both can attack each other.
There are many causes why even friendly guinea pigs trace each other.
One reason for this can be when subordinate guinea pigs wish to become dominant partners.
And another reason is that if your guinea pigs are facing geekiness and taking out their frustration on their partners.
Also, they can be stressed, and their aggression is coming out of them. If you observe any of these signals, quickly keep your guinea pigs separated.
Seek their attention by making different sounds and keep them in different cages.
But their cages must be placed together.
By this, you will get to know if their fight is permanent or not. Even from the fence of their enclosures, they show their aggression to each other. Then their bonding is finished.
Pre-Bonding Your Guinea Pigs
Introducing guinea pigs can be a stressful situation.
If you have decided to keep your guinea pigs in the same cage, you must make wise moves.
You can think of pre-bonded guinea pigs. Here, you will be required to make your pets habitual of each other’s smell from a distance.
There is an option like you can bring cages both for your guinea pigs and keep the cages together. Your guinea pigs will find each other through the fences of the enclosure.
Your guinea pigs must know each other’s smell through things, so you should teach them about it.
Exchange their plates of waste and capture a small quantity of bedding from one’s cage and put it in another cage. You are moving forward slowly to make them friends.
Sometimes after, let your guinea pigs look at each other from a reasonable distance. Place a barrier between them. It is risky to keep guinea pigs together who are not known to each other.
Prepare dinner for your guinea pigs and let them eat at the same time while keeping a barrier in between.
That will make a positive connection, and your pets will feel secure that no one will take their food away from them.
How To Bond Two Guinea Pigs?
When you are ready for your guinea pigs to meet personally, then there are some points to be noted.
- Introduce your guinea pigs to each other in cold months. Guinea pigs whose sex organs are blocked, even then, also carry some hormones. It is less considered to introduce them between October and February.
- Introduce them to a commonplace that is new to both of them. They should not be claiming that area as their space, and if one of them does so, the other will get attacked.
- Be sure that you are providing them lots of areas. They might start fighting because it is a reality if you push your pets into a small space.
- Keep this in mind that the objects you are offering to your pets must have the same scent. Which means the bed and the plate of waste must have a similar smell. That will help in calming down both guinea pigs.
- Keep your pets distracted; that means to provide them lots of dry grass to eat and toys to play. Your guinea pigs should only be giving attention to their objects, not to each other. There are some tips to enhance the skills of keeping guinea pigs.
- Begin the introduction part slowly, leave your guinea pigs for one minute, and then gradually extend the time limits in the next meetings. While doing this, if they start fighting in between, again start from zero levels.
- Always be ready to keep your guinea pigs apart, if required. While fighting guinea pigs can act very violently by biting or scratching claws, so it is advised not to wear short sleeves, you must wear solid shoes and gloves if you are resolving their fight.
Your guinea pigs will experience these seven stages to bond that we have explained below. It takes too long to befriend guinea pigs, and sometimes it will happen in a few hours.
How Do I Know If My Guinea Pigs Are Bonded?
When you are prepared to make your guinea pig’s best friends of each other, there are few definite hints to be observed.
The bonding procedure will take place step by step as the list is given below; however, they will be mixed up often.
You must know that the bonding procedure may take a while. It could be as long as two months until the guinea pigs will be friends.
Do not try to keep your guinea pigs together if you do not feel confident about their bonding.
Guinea Pigs Ignoring Each Other
It may appear not correct to you at first because you expect to build friendships between them. And then they are avoiding each other. So the question is how they will be friends?
The thing is that bonding between guinea pigs consumes some time.
Also, your guinea pigs avoiding each other at first is quite reasonable. If they are not communicating, they are not attacking each other, which is the essential move towards friendship.
Declaring yourself unlucky during this period is not correct.
Your guinea pigs are not known to each other, but that does not mean they will ignore each other their whole life. Let them be together for a short time and manage them from attacking each other.
Guinea Pigs Show Interest In Each Other
Sometime after, the guinea pigs will begin to interact. They will smell each other’s scent and then will start talking in different small manners.
What your guinea pigs are conveying is essential to know. To those who don’t understand their pet’s way of communication, it all appears nothing.
However, the body gestures of guinea pigs are so short that they can not be analyzed. They can even plan to fight.
The house of guinea pigs rescue network explains how guinea pigs interact.
When guinea pigs grunts or crushing their teeth are the negative signals, immediately keep your guinea pigs apart for a while if you find these kinds of messages in them.
Guinea Pigs Starts Sharing
As already said, guinea pigs are regional. And however, guinea pigs are not born with the nature of sharing.
We have advised it before to offer your guinea pigs similar things. By the time, they will start liking each other’s food and playing objects. Their limitations will be tested in this procedure.
If the procedure of their relationship goes nicely, then both of the guinea pigs show interest in sharing their spaces. And the moment you feel it is happening, then they are soon going to be friends.
Guinea Pigs Start Playing Together
When the guinea pigs start using each other’s space and things, the next move after this is playing together, and there are many ways for it. The natural form is revolving and following.
The Sacramento house of guinea pigs has told that when guinea pigs play, they appear like they are fighting.
While following each other, if they bite, Immediately they should be kept far from each other. For seeking attention, guinea pigs sometimes pinch each other.
It is advised that guinea pigs who play along enjoy other activities altogether, like bouncing and moving. Guinea pigs start ill-treating their partners if they stop playing.
Guinea Pig Starts To Sleep Together
The other step of playing along is to sleep together. Guinea pigs are targets of predators. Your guinea pigs understand this while they sleep that they are not secured.
When your guinea pigs are ready to settle in a comfortable position, it is a hint of belief.
And they also wish for full safety. It shows clearly that your guinea pigs are not scared even after knowing that they can be attacked.
Bonding happens in many ways, but that does not mean cuddling is the sign of friendship.
Guinea pigs can disappoint each other even if they cuddle each other for hours. But it teaches guinea pigs to fill the differences after a fight and make the relationship unbreakable.
Guinea Pigs Starts Grooming Each Other
Comforting each other is an essential move of friendship. That is the way your guinea pigs show love and how limitations are introduced.
Once your guinea pigs start snuggling one another, they introduce their place in social ranking, which is essential to guinea pigs. Those guinea pigs can never comfort each other who do not get to live together.
When guinea pigs gently push each other and tilt their head down, they are making the first move of grooming.
But, many times, this move is not immediate. It happens that some guinea pigs start licking other guinea pigs, which shows positive signals. It is the best gesture to know how guinea pigs show their love.
Usually, if you observe that your guinea pig is grooming another guinea pig very soon, there is nothing to be concerned about. It shows that they have found who is dominant in the couple.
Guinea Pig Showing Social Hierarchy
The last step of building relationships is setting up a friendly ranking order. You will get it that your pets are friends of each other if they have introduced one partner as a master and another as a junior.
It is not the matter that humble guinea pigs are facing partiality. Social hierarchy confirms that guinea pigs are happy now. However, guinea pigs take time to admit who is the senior of the cage.
Till then, the procedure of friendship remains unfulfilled. Two of the guinea pigs will keep declaring themselves as dominant until it is figured.
It is the primary cause that you are not capable of bonding them in a hurry. Pair of guinea pigs hoping to be the dominator will not stop fighting.