Follow Up Friday – There Can Be Successes
As you probably know whee have been talking about rabbits and guinea pigs being kept together and why you shouldn’t. Our first post dealt with Banham Zoo keeping them together. Despite our best efforts, they have not changed anything and the local papers are not interested in helping us. Our next was a follow up with a comment from the RSPCA on why this was not a good idea.
Whee are making moves in the right direction and places are starting to listen. One success had by a lovely lady called Caroline was at her local Just for Pets Store.
She sent an email to the store voicing her concerns about them keeping rabbits and guinea pigs together. Pointing out why this is not good practice and a link to the RSPCA website on the dangers.
The store manager sent her a reply, which whee have below:
Thank you for your email, which has been brought to my attention by my Regional Manager. I am sorry that you felt the need to contact us regarding the rabbits and Guinea pigs welfare.
I realise that keeping Guinea pigs and Rabbits together is not ideal and shouldn’t be done when the Rabbit starts maturing. The rabbits we have are very young, 7-8 weeks of age and are not even close to getting to sexual maturity so there’s minimal risk of the rabbit mounting the guinea pig and hurting or stressing the guinea pig out.
Baby rabbits very rarely kick out and we monitor all our animals daily usually checking up on them every couple of hours. If we see any kind of stress then we always investigate and isolate the stressed animal. In my four, nearly 5 years of being the store manager i have never had any injured rabbits or guinea pigs. If for any reason we have a rabbit instore for a long period and he/she starts getting older/bigger then we usually put them on there own.
The food we have in the pens is guinea pig food and they get fresh greens also. We are aware that guinea pigs need a special diet and there are caves in the pens incase the guinea pig feels the need to hide.
Obviously we would never sell rabbits and guinea pigs to be housed together due to the points above.
Cavies are gregarious by nature and benefit from being kept in pairs or groups, especially if they are without human contact during the day and we do inform customers of this if they want to only purchase 1 guinea pig. Also its not always ideal for someone to purchase 2 or more guinea pigs due to size and cost of feeding and housing so we always stress in these situations that they need to be handled daily and recommend having a indoor hutch.
At this present time our shops are having new animal units fitted which will be more appropriate to housing guinea pigs and rabbits separately. At this moment in time i have separated the rabbits and guinea pigs to help every ones peace of mind.
I hope I have addressed any concerns you may have had regarding the welfare of our guinea pigs or rabbits.
Once again please accept my apologies for your dissatisfied visit to our store. If you would like to talk to me further about this matter, please do not hesitate to contact me directly.
As Caroline said, this is an achievement and a real step in the right direction for animal welfare. It can be done!
Some of you mentioned in comments on the last post that you know of places keeping rabbits and guinea pigs together. Would you name and shame shops, zoos and farms with their locations so whee can get the hoomans to contact them and do their best to improve the lives and way those animals are being kept?
Together, whee can all make a difference. One little popcorning step at a time and whee will get there!
Have a fab Friday efurryone
Posted on September 27, 2013, in Piggy Blogs and tagged cavies, cavy, dangers of keeping rabbits with guinea pigs, good practice for pet stores, guinea pig blog, guinea pig blogger, guinea pigs in pet shops, just for pets, just for pets guinea pigs, just for pets stores, pet, pets, rabbits and guinea pigs, should i keep a rabbit with a guinea pig. Bookmark the permalink. 39 Comments.