Last updated on January 22nd, 2023 at 06:48 pm
Guinea pigs are very interesting and fun pets that cheer us up with their behavior and make our day more fun and interesting.
They love to play and are generally very nice and social animals who love companionship and communication.
But guinea pigs also know how to quarrel with each other and fight.
Why do guinea pigs fight?
Guinea pigs fight for various reasons such as dominance, illness, boredom, injury, small cage, and other reasons.
It is a completely normal behavior of guinea pigs, but you still need to know how to stop them from fighting each other.
Why do guinea pigs fight?
There are several reasons why guinea pigs fight with each other, although they are generally very good and gentle pets.
Guinea pigs fight for many reasons, here are some of them:
- an injury
- a small cage
Therefore, let’s take a closer look at all possible reasons for fighting between guinea pigs.
Among guinea pigs, there is always the one who is the leader of the group, and the others are subordinate to him, or rather, they have a hierarchy of authority.
To know who the leader of the group is, they decided by showing their teeth.
If a guinea pig does not want to accept the leader of the group then a fight will have to occur to see who is the leader.
All this is normal for guinea pigs, but fights between them should still be avoided.
Injury or illness
When guinea pigs live together for a long time without fighting, and then suddenly start fighting, then it can mean that a guinea pig is sick or injured.
Then the sick guinea pig must be removed from the cage and separated from the others.
He should then be taken to the vet to examine him and see what is wrong with him.
When a guinea pig is sick or injured, we should take good care of it, give them healthy food, and always have enough water so that it can heal faster.
Sometimes guinea pigs fight if they are bored, although this rarely happens, it can happen sometimes.
That’s why you need to provide them with more entertainment so that they don’t get bored, put more toys, and make more tunnels and hiding places for them to have fun.
The toys will not only be interesting for them, but they will also allow them to reduce their ever-growing teeth.
Aggressive guinea pigs
Usually when two or more guinea pigs are in one cage, one of them is the leader of the group and all the others give in to him so that fights do not occur.
But sometimes it happens that you meet two dominant guinea pigs who will not want to give in and will want both to be leaders or dominate.
If you get into such a conflict situation, there is no other solution than to separate them in separate cages.
That’s why it’s important when you buy guinea pigs and when you plan to get two, then you should choose some that already live together in the same cage, so you’ll know that one is dominant over the other.
Age plays an important role in whether guinea pigs will fight in their cage. As they get older, they become impatient with others and may start fighting especially female guinea pigs.
Sometimes the younger ones pick on the older guinea pigs and cause fights.
That’s why you need to pay special attention to older guinea pigs and their behavior in the cage.
A small cage
If the cage of the guinea pigs is small, then it can lead to nervousness and fighting between the two guinea pigs.
The minimum cage size for two guinea pigs is 120cm x 60cm x 45cm.
Guinea pigs like to live together, but if they feel cramped, they will constantly get angry and fight.
You can try putting two water bottles or two hay frames, but eventually, they will need a wider cage to avoid fights.
Male and female guinea pigs
If you put in two male and one female guinea pig then you can expect a fight in the cage.
The two male guinea pigs will fight each other to win the female and it will end very badly for the one male guinea pig.
So be careful when buying or when planning to put more than one guinea pig in one cage.
When the guinea pigs establish a hierarchy, then you know who is in charge and they don’t fight, but sometimes that may not be the case.
If you separate one of the guinea pigs from the group for a certain period and after some time bring it back again after a few days, a fight may occur.
Then they go through the same process of dominance and indicating who is in charge between them again and fights can happen.
Therefore, it is best not to separate the guinea pigs for a long time, because the hierarchy in the cage will be forgotten.
Guinea pig fights when they are teenagers
If guinea pigs are fine and suddenly start fighting then it could be because they are teenagers.
When a guinea pig is about 3 months old it enters puberty and its hormones make it aggressive.
The teenage pig then challenges the dominant guinea pig to a fight, although before that everything was fine, no fights.
When the guinea pig is 5 months old, their teenage period passes and they calm down, but during those two months, they can fight with the leader of the group.
Therefore, it is best to put them in a much larger cage so that they are not so close to starting fights or separating themselves completely, at least until they pass puberty.
What happens when guinea pigs fight?
When guinea pigs fight it usually starts with them circling behind other guinea pigs or starting to follow each other, these are the first signs that they are going to fight.
Then they begin to show their teeth, and their teeth may clash, then one of the guinea pigs may retreat and the fight may stop.
Then they will remove and everything will end in a good way.
Now if none of the guinea pigs pull back then the fight starts and they start climbing on top of each other or pushing forward.
Again, one guinea pig can retreat and the fight is over, if it doesn’t retreat then the dangerous part of the fight follows.
They will start biting and jumping with loud noises, and they are really fighting. It is best for guinea pig owners to notice when their fight is starting and stop them.
Read more: Why Guinea Pigs Bite and How to Stop It? Let’s Discover
Do male or female guinea pigs fight more?
One might think that male guinea pigs always do the fighting in the cage, but that doesn’t always have to be the case.
After all, female guinea pigs also use the same tactics for proving and dominating other guinea pigs.
It can be concluded that it doesn’t matter whether you have male or female guinea pigs, both will fight to become the leader of the group.
Read more: Are Guinea Pigs Cannibals? All You Need To Know
How do we stop guinea pigs from fighting?
If you want to calm down the guinea pigs and stop the fight you need to do something similar to a boxing match.
Take a towel and throw it over a guinea pig, then everyone will stop and wonder what’s going on. This is a good way to defuse the situation and fight between them.
Then separate them into separate cages or separate places in your home and leave them apart for a few hours.
Then put them together again and be careful if they start fighting again, if the fighting continues then you have to permanently separate them in separate cages.
Frequently asked questions
Do guinea pigs fight more when it’s warmer or cooler?
Yes, weather plays a role in when guinea pigs are most likely to fight. When the weather and temperature are higher the guinea pigs fight more because the hot weather affects their hormones and they become more aggressive and fight each other.
How long will it take for one of the guinea pigs to establish dominance over the others?
In 3-4 days, the situation in the cage should calm down, that is, one guinea pig should rule and dominate. If the fighting does not stop and lasts more than 20 days, then the guinea pigs will have to be completely separated, there is no other solution.
Do guinea pigs fight to the death?
Fights to death happen very rarely, usually, they calm down, and then everything will be fine. But sometimes if you don’t stop them in time it can lead to the death of one of the guinea pigs.