[Gpdd] [BEHAVIOR] Nosophoros and Flaco-Paco have been "formally"introduced--would love more advice

Penny Charlesworth piggyfriends at tesco.net
Mon Oct 16 18:38:53 EDT 2006

Hi Ginger,

So sorry to read that your introductions were not an immediate success. It 
doesn't always work. Sometimes one pig just prefers his own company.

Don't give up though. I would certainly try the shampoo when you have 
someone to help you. By eliminating all scents you may just be lucky with 
the new introduction.

Personally, I would keep putting the divider in, if I could not watch them 
all the time. In the end, even if they will not be companions, at least 
no-one will have got hurt.

You will know if you have a bonded pair. They want to be together all the 
time, follow each other around and cuddle up together. I had, until 
recently, a pair of Rex brothers, Rolo and Raffles, and they were 
inseparable. When they were cuddled up together, I could not tell where one 
piggy ended and the other began. One would get upset if the other was 
removed from the pen for grooming etc. Hope your boys get to that stage.

Have you put boxes into the cage so that they can get away from each other 
if they want to? Most of my piggies share their boxes but I have a father 
and son, Barley and Rye, who co-habit happily except for when they sleep, 
when they will not share a box. I use cardboard boxes but perhaps you have 
pigloos or similar.

You could try giving them floor time together and see if they get on better 
when there is more room. Be ready to grab one if it doesn't work. I don't 
believe that it would be stressful for them. If one is being bullied, you 
can always separate them.

When I am introducing any piggies ( sows or boars ) I always put a large 
amount of food in the pen to distract them. I use a pile of fresh grass as 
one piggy will not run off with a piece as they would with a carrot slice 
and if they want to eat ( which they always do ) they need to remain 
together to do it.

Keep trying and let us all know how you get on! Good luck!!

Regards from Penny and the Piggyfriends.

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Ginger Hoffman" <gingera at MIT.EDU>
To: <Gpdd at gpdd.org>
Sent: Sunday, October 15, 2006 6:30 PM
Subject: [Gpdd] [BEHAVIOR] Nosophoros and Flaco-Paco have been 
"formally"introduced--would love more advice

> Thank you Laura, Penny, Charlene, Maren, and everyone else who gave me 
> advice about introductions.
> Here's the update:  I followed the "gradual introductions" of 2 adult 
> boars on barmy4boars.co.uk, and introduced last night on neutral 
> territory.  I also rubbed something that smelled like Nosophoros on 
> Flaco-Paco (and vice versa) before putting them in the introduction 
> territory.  They were in that territory for about 4 hours, and there were 
> no major fights, but there was a LOT of mounting, rumbling, butt sniffing, 
> chasing and heated "talking".  I then put them in their fully cleaned cage 
> (what used to be Wallie and Nosophoros' cage, and then just Nosophoros' 
> cage--it's 4 x 3.5 C and C) for about 3 hours.  Same deal--almost constant 
> chasing and talking, LOTS of rumbling and butt-sniffing.  I put a divider 
> down the middle when I went to bed just because things seemed a little too 
> rambunctious and I was worried about injuries.  I took the divider out 
> about 30 minutes ago today, and the behavior is the same--almost 
> *constant* sniffing and chasing and "heated" talking.  There are breaks of 
> 2-3 minutes of quiet, sometimes, though!
> All advice is appreciated.  I want to keep putting the divider up when I 
> go out or go to sleep, because I feel like the risk of injuries is high. 
> But I've also heard (mainly from cavycages members) that it's very bad to 
> keep taking the divider down and putting it back up--that they "start 
> over" every time the divider is taken down (which seems a little extreme 
> to me--I thought that they could remember each other and make *some* 
> relationship progress through the bars--is that true?).  So, should I keep 
> putting the divider up and down, or should I leave it in?  What about 
> floor time?  Should I try a buddy bath?  (although I can't do the buddy 
> bath for a few days, because I need someone to help me with it).
> I'm a little confused about the "buddy" relationship in general--how do 
> you know if two pigs have bonded?  Because it seems like most bonded pigs 
> still rumble and even have a little spat occasionally.  It seems like 
> there's a very fine line between 'bonded' and 'not bonded/bullying'.  For 
> example, Wallie and Nosy seemed to get along reasonably well.  There was 
> lots of rumbling and some brief spats between them for 8 months, but also 
> lots of calm.  Eventually, it seemed like the spats were resulting in 
> tufts of fur being pulled, and blood was drawn twice (two very minor cuts 
> on the lip) so I separated them (although put them together for floor 
> time).  Basically, it was never clear to me when they crossed the line 
> from "getting along" to "not getting along."
> Maybe I should just keep the divider in, and if it looks like Nosy and 
> Flaco are getting super-friendly, I can try taking it out.  But then 
> should I have them together for floor time, or is that stressful for 
> them??  It's all very confusing to me.
> Sorry for such a lengthy post!  Thanks for listening!
> best,
> Ginger, Nosophoros, and Flaco-Paco (and Wallie, who's watching from the 
> bridge, probably rooting for Flaco-Paco!)

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