Free range guinea pigs?

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Raven81

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Free range guinea pigs?
« on: March 30, 2012, 20:07 »
A neighbour of MIL's has some guinea pigs. 

For around 2 years these guinea pigs have roamed wild nibbling on the grass on all the front gardens.  They have no run or anything and just do as they please, you can't get near them.

As we have not been into the neighbours back garden we don't know if they have a safe hutch there for night times and bowl of proper food or not. 

I'm torn between saying that they seem really happy and have been ok this long and thinking what if they don't have what they need.

Opinions please.
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Gandan57

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Re: Free range guinea pigs?
« Reply #1 on: March 30, 2012, 20:13 »
I`m just surprised they have survived this long as they are a tasty treat for many predators, including dogs and cats.
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Raven81

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Re: Free range guinea pigs?
« Reply #2 on: March 30, 2012, 20:46 »
That is what has made me wonder whether they may have some sort of hutch out the back, on saying that they were definately out yesterday at 7pm as I saw them with my own eyes!

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Squibbs

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Re: Free range guinea pigs?
« Reply #3 on: March 30, 2012, 21:52 »
They are probably having a better life than all those guinea pigs that are bought, played with intensely for 2 weeks by excited children until the novelty wears off and then spend the rest of their lives mostly ignored in a small hutch until they die of whatever guinea pigs die of.
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Paul Plots

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Re: Free range guinea pigs?
« Reply #4 on: March 31, 2012, 00:57 »
They are doing very well to avoid the attention of the local fox/es.

At 7pm around here they would be at risk in the open.  :(
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arugula

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Re: Free range guinea pigs?
« Reply #5 on: March 31, 2012, 06:41 »
They are lovely little animals if handled enough and properly, but they can be very feisty and will easily see a cat off! Saying that, they probably do have somewhere safe to go at night as getting wet wouldn't suit them.
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maxyboo

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Re: Free range guinea pigs?
« Reply #6 on: March 31, 2012, 15:41 »
Can't you ask about the guineas (in a friendly way) if you see them in their garden. I think to be honest there would be nothing you can do about it anyway. Call the RSPCA if you are really concerned but in my opinion you won't get a lot of joy from them. Sounds like they are managing to survive unless they are just being replaced by new batches every few months :ohmy: You say you can't get near them but if you have not been in the garden, how do you know? It might be that the owner can handle them. I hope they have somewhere safe at night but have seen all sorts.

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richyrich7

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Re: Free range guinea pigs?
« Reply #7 on: March 31, 2012, 16:02 »
chap I work with has had 85+ guinea pigs, he kept all the girls in a shed overnight and every morning he let them out to roam the back garden it was like a herd of mini buffalo's  :lol:

I'd be tempted to leave be, if they've been roaming for 2 years chances are they have a safe haven or two
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Raven81

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Re: Free range guinea pigs?
« Reply #8 on: March 31, 2012, 16:27 »
You say you can't get near them but if you have not been in the garden, how do you know? It might be that the owner can handle them. I hope they have somewhere safe at night but have seen all sorts.

The guineas live in the front gardens! They are not fenced off or anything and just wander from garden to garden as they please - which a few of the neighbours are unhappy about!

They look happy enough and I doubt we will take any action unless they seem to be suffering.

I'm sure they must have shelter of some sort at the back - maybe an open hutch they can go in and out of as they please as otherwise they surely wouldn't have survived the winter - specially the one before last.

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maxyboo

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Re: Free range guinea pigs?
« Reply #9 on: March 31, 2012, 21:24 »
Ah, that does sound extremely odd. Why on earth don't the neighbours complain? I love guinea pigs but would not want other people's running all over my garden. I really do understand your concerns but just think that there is very little you can do about it. My personal opinion is that the RSPCA should take an active role in cases like this. It can't be safe for the guineas especially if they are next to a road and they should definitely have safe shelter for the night. We have a very busy A road nearby and one house owner lets their chickens wander around on it. They mostly stay near the edges but we do see them squashed and it seems they just get more to replace them. I  would consider  both these situations to be animal neglect. In reality though the RSPCA don't seem to get involved in these smaller cases. I love the idea of the guineas being able to free range within a safe garden with shelter for nightime but certainly not in the way you describe. Unless the neighbours kick up a fuss and force the owners to contain their pets, I suspect nothing will change unfortunately.

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ANHBUC

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Re: Free range guinea pigs?
« Reply #10 on: April 01, 2012, 09:07 »
I recently bought a rabbit hutch and run from a family who let their rabbits free range in their back garden for four years.  Their luck had just ran out as a fox fancied a free dinner.  They were naive and only found out that there were fox in the area when asking neighbours after the attack.

I would not know what to advise though as a short life free ranging versus a long life in a cage is a hard one to call.    :unsure:
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sunshineband

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Re: Free range guinea pigs?
« Reply #11 on: April 01, 2012, 09:20 »
chap I work with has had 85+ guinea pigs, he kept all the girls in a shed overnight and every morning he let them out to roam the back garden it was like a herd of mini buffalo's  :lol:

I'd be tempted to leave be, if they've been roaming for 2 years chances are they have a safe haven or two

This is how someone near where we used to live with a huge garden kept hers --- they all seemed to turn up at nigh time to go to bed, and get their daily supply of grain feed. The females mainly gave birth in the shed amongst the hay,  occasionally some 'wild birth' ones appeared, and every so often she gave some away as pets.

She did have her graden well fenced but inevetitable some roamed a little further, as I found when we so carefully caught one in a cat basket 'baited' with carrot, and asked the neighbours if anyone had lost a guinea pig . They laughed and told us about the Big House - as everyone called it - and the guinea pigs.

Took the rather squeaky guinea pig back home, where it happily trotted off into the bushes  :lol: :lol: :lol:
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spottymint

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Re: Free range guinea pigs?
« Reply #12 on: April 01, 2012, 10:47 »
They must have a safe place/bolthole. The fox would have picked them off by now.

When I lived in London, they wouldn't have been safe in a hutch, let alone running around.

I now live in a more country-fied area, less foxes, but did see matey running down the road at about 20 to eight the other morning.

I wouldn't risk it, sorry. Seems odd they are in everyone's garden though, I love Gunieas, but I'd be mad if they eat my plants.


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Paul Plots

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Re: Free range guinea pigs?
« Reply #13 on: April 07, 2012, 23:10 »
They must have a safe place/bolthole. The fox would have picked them off by now.

When I lived in London, they wouldn't have been safe in a hutch, let alone running around.

I now live in a more country-fied area, less foxes, but did see matey running down the road at about 20 to eight the other morning.

I wouldn't risk it, sorry. Seems odd they are in everyone's garden though, I love Gunieas, but I'd be mad if they eat my plants.



I agree with you 100%

Foxes in London are everywhere including under my aunt's whirly-gig washing-line the other day (sunning itself behind the sheets) and sat sitting on her front doorstep when she arrived back from the shops as if it was the family dog.

Our wabbit grazes the entire garden so a hoard    pack group of guniea pigs would do wonders for mowing the entire garden!




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