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The Right Companion For A Male Guinea Pig

Can male guinea pigs live together and does the breed matter?

Shannon Cauthen
Posted: November 8, 2013, 8:30 p.m. EST

two guinea pigs walking
© Courtesy Joanne K.
Although male guinea pigs can be more difficult to pair up than a male/female or female/female pair, the ultimate success of a pairing depends on the personalities of the guinea pigs involved.

Q: I have a boar named Fez. He's about a year and 4 months old. He is an American guinea pig. I want to get him a friend, obviously male. Is there a specific breed that would be better suited to his personality?

A: Male guinea pigs can be tricky to find a friend for but not entirely impossible. It takes finding the right combination to get a good match, but even then you must be prepared to have a second cage available if there is a falling out between the two.

You will often read that the only true male pairs – those that remain together -- are those that are related in some capacity. For example, two brothers, father and son or guinea pigs who were raised in a large group together as littermates. This is not always the case. Just like in human families, not all members always get along. For example, I have had male triplets who started out together and ended up living separately because something was said between them and now they will not live together without hurting each other. The same is true for fathers and sons. It comes down to the individual personalities of the guinea pigs.

You can also have two unrelated males, paired together at some point in their lives, and they are a diehard pair that fail to thrive when they are separated; yet they are just fine when they are together. So there is no rhyme or reason to successfully pairing male guinea pigs, just coincidence.

Not every person wants a roommate, and guinea pigs are no different. Ideally, take Fez and introduce him to no more than three males that you like. Let him make the choice. He will let you know in the first 30 minutes if they are not going to get along or if he is OK with the idea. No guinea pig breed behaves differently. It is what is going on inside, not what is on the outside, that will determine if they can live together.

See more guinea pig Q&As, click here>>
See guinea pig health Q&As, click here>>
See Shannon Cauthen's author bio, click here>>

Posted: November 8, 2013, 8:30 p.m. EST


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The Right Companion For A Male Guinea Pig

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Reader Comments
Why is no mention made of the best age of the new companion? It is much more likely to be successful if a baby - 6 or 7 weeks old - is introduced to the 4 month old than an older pig.
Penny, International
Posted: 11/10/2013 2:14:01 AM
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