Archive for June, 2008

Still Solo, but not solitary

The time came this wheek for Mr Big to move out of the family home. He has already reached the grand age of four wheeks and as cute as baby Mr Bigs would be we certainly don’t need any! There were two options, to move in with his cousins or to pair him up with Solo. As Solo was living alone it seemed only fair to give him first refusal.

They met in a ‘bare run’ (bare as in no houses,). Solo was most excited to have company after months of living alone and making do with living next to other guineas. He rumbled and strutted at Mr Big, who took it all in his stride, for about 5 minutes before settling down. Mr Big was happy to trot away if Solo got too enthusiastic and when Solo’s curiosity had waned he gave Mr Big a head wash (Chantilly hasn’t been seen grooming Mr Big for a while now 🙂 ). The two boys had went about their business (eating mostly) and took it in turns to trot behind one another.

After a successful afternoon in the run next to Cloud and his girls they came inside to their new hutch. By now hay and anything else that was edible was far more interesting than paying attention to the other one and they have settled happily for the night 🙂

Whether or not this pairing lasts remains to be seen, Mr Big is a very laid back boar- at the moment, but teenage hormones can change all that and will be taken into consideration when he is rehomed. He probably won’t leave here until he is at least 12 wheeks old. Maybe with the delightful Solo, maybe not 🙂

Karen (pleased that the boys haven’t complicated life for me 🙂 )

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Wheeks and Bounds!

Miss Tickle’s and her pups are currently sharing accomadation with Mr Big and Chantilly. The comparison in pup size has been, how shall we say, interesting. The little Miss tickle lookalike has now been named Fizz because of her bubbly personality and constant chat, she is quite the animated little busy body in the nicest possible way. Her brother, has now be named Marley (as in Bob, Google it if you aren’t sure 🙂 ). Her is the most chilled out baby I have yet to meet. He flops in your hand with one leg over the side of your palm and waits for his head rubs which he adores. Thankfully he is a boar or he would find his way into one of my sow pens I’m sure! This boy is horizontal 🙂

Both these two had a head start on Mr. Big weightwise, but Marley has now overtaken him and is weighing in at 232g, Fizz is 203g and Mr Big 211g (not to mention 2 wheeks older). Both pups are suckling much less, hardly at all in fact. In the wild pups reportedly cease suckling at around 14 days.

Marley has found his rumble but doesn’t have a clue what to do with it and everyone looks at him like he’s a bit strange 🙂 All these guineas (Mums and all) are very into popcorning, particularly when a fresh pile of hay is put in. Marley and Fizz go straight to find the centre of the pile and, I’d imagine, eat their way out. They eat pretty much everything now and enjoy Cavy Cuisine and have been grazing on the grass in the fine weather. They’re quite happy to have it brought to them though if the weathers not so good 🙂

So from a really poor start for Mum everything has turned out well, just goes to show really that guineas don’t need a lot but what they do need they must have or things will quickly go downhill. None of these pigs have had special care, just an ordinary diet and somewhere decent to live (ie clean, dry and spacious).

All their basic needs have been catered for and they have come on in wheeks and bounds 🙂

Karen (who doesn’t ‘wheek’ or bound.)

Mr Big(ger)

Mr. Big, aged 4 wheeks

Despite that shaky start to life Mr Big has been taking advantage of what he has got- a Mum all to himself, some yummy solids that he can, at last manage and friends to play with 🙂 His weight on the 17 June was 203g and he certainly looks more guinea pig shape now, previously he had a kind of hunched kangaroo appearance about him, but he has a nice long back now and legs that fit 🙂

After mastering the art of eating hays it was only a matter of time before he started to attack the veggies and is now into anything and everything, including Cavy Cuisine which is a good size for his little smiley mouth.

He has a sort of hairstyle going on that looks like it could possibly be Sheltie type though not ‘full grown’ I suspect. Baby Shelties are a bit more obvious than he is, but who knows Mr Big is quite an immature little boy. He still hasn’t discovered his rumble, I can confirm he is definitely a ‘Mr’ but will need to come away from Mum shortly, just in case. It has been a wheek now since I last saw him suckle from Mum, I don’t expect he does anymore. He’s happy grazing and eating solids and his weight increase shows it suits him.

He finds Miss Tickle’s twins a constant source of fun and they zoom round their cage and play in the hay, often Mr Big can be found snuggled with one of them. The little Rex boar will make a good hutchmate for him when the time for seperation comes…

Mr Big, 4 weeks old and 203g.

I’m still Standing…

Mr Happy in his new home as a Gorgeous Guinea.

An increasing reason for the arrival of guests on Planet Guinea is the ‘last guinea standing one’. There comes a time in lots of Humans lives when they can no longer keep guineas and they are inevitably left with that ‘last lone guinea’. Sometimes these guineas are young, but often they are nearer the older end of the scale.

Ursula returned to Planet Guinea two years after she had been adopted from here. Her friend Maggie had died and Ursula’s humans were no longer in a position to continue keeping guineas. Not long after returning Ursula developed some minor dental problems resulting in having her top Incisor removed. During this time Ursula bonded with the residents on Planet Guinea and at the age of 6 I decided this should be her final home 🙂

Mr. Happy arrived after the death of his hutchmate. His Human had a young family and felt it was unfair to get more guineas when she couldn’t give them the time they deserve and need. When she got Mr. Happy there were no little Humans and the guineas enjoyed lots of Human attention. However, at 5 years old (nearly 6) Mr Happy is older than the oldest Little Human!

The senior guineas have become wise to the Human in Reading that is an easy catch for them, particularly if they are over two years old and especially if they are boars! It wasn’t long before Mr. Happy had received an invite to meet the Gorgeous Guineas, in particular a certain Mr. Cool, a previous guest on Planet Guinea.

Mr. Happy found found the whole event rather nerve racking yet exciting. His nerves presented as some teeth chattering and ‘on edge’ behaviour’ and the excitement was at the girlies (also past guests on Planet Guinea!) who were living nextdoor.

Three months and bucket loads of patience later and Mr Happy is a whole lot calmer and no longer living off of his nerves. He has realised that he has nothing to prove by chattering teeth and puffing himself up. He has even been reported to have been found asleep on his side with his eyes closed, not something he would have done when he arrived there 🙂

Older guineas have a lot to give and are generally better suited to family homes than youngsters are. They are bigger making them easier to hold and are, on the whole, better at sitting than babies are. Florence went to be a Gorgeous Guinea at the tender age of three years and eight years old is still there.

Surrendering your last guinea to a rescue might not be best for you or your family, but it can mean a whole new lease of life for your guinea.

Karen (trying not to sound like she’s ‘touting for business’!)

Mr Happy after his Gorgeous Guineas bath.

Miss Tickle Pups

During Wednesday night Miss Tickle gave birth to two healthy black and tan pups. One is a Rexoid and the other is rough haired like Mum. Both are well and weighed in at 78g: rough sow, 89g: Rexoid boar. Both are now eating Cavy Cuisine, grass and hay and having a go at Readigrass (Day 5, with Wednesday as day 1), but have no interest in veggies- I’m sure these guys are born with instinct and develop ‘bad’ habits!
Miss Tickle is happy for Mr Big to come over and play though she draws the line at feeding him!
The little sow is a chatty little girl while the Rex is very laid back and doesn’t do much more than chill…

Supersize Me!

Mr Big has reached the grand age of 2 wheeks and is doing really well. A slow start to eating and not much interest in fresh food has changed to one of interest in everything edible now 🙂 First and foremost Mr Big tucked into Oxbow Timothy Hay, Readigrass followed this and he opened his palate to the delights of fresh food. Eating Spring Greens was probably the biggest challenge and he would leave them with a dark green rim where they’d been gummed but no bites taken.

Chantilly has remained quite the aloof mother putting her own needs first, this seems to have helped Mr Big become more robust, whilst Chantilly is not a big guinea she’s a lot bigger than him and it can’t be much fun when Mum decides a full belly is more important than feeding Mr Big!

On Day 8 Mr Big’s weight had increased to 72g and on day 10 it wasup to 85g.

Mr Big now has 2 playmates in Miss Tickles pups. They weighed in at 78g and 89g, Mr B was 110g at that time (day16).

However none of these weights compare to his visitor yesterday! A whopping 1360g, Mr B weighed in at 10 times smaller- 136g!

Mr Big and Rex Mr Big with the little Rex boar .

Supersize me! With Mr Magic (also from Reading Guinea Pig Rescue) yesterday showing that size doesn’t matter 🙂

Gorgeous Guineas Blog