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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old 10-28-2007, 07:39 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 13
New PD owner questions

Hello everyone,

I am new to the group and a new PD owner. We have had our three Prairie dogs for two weeks now. We love them so much and they have quickly become a very important part of our family - it's to the point where we can't remember or imagine life without them!

I do have a question and am wondering if maybe anyone has some insight. When we got our PD's I sexed them and we were told by their previous owners they are all fixed. They get along well and we haven't seen them have any troubles with each other except the odd minor tiff. The two male PD's get along great, but the big male (Chip) has been harassing the female like crazy and she wants nothing to do with him. The two males are bonded closely but the female often sleeps by herself and they have been fighting for the last three days straight right out of the clear blue. At night they will still sometimes all sleep together still. The two males are always grooming each other and cuddling, but the female is always left out and by herself. I can't imagine why - I am still learning PD language and I don't understand what is happening here since they are all fixed supposedly, how could I tell? I never doubted the woman I got them from, because why would she lie about that? ... Any idea's?

Apparently one of the Prairie dogs she had origionally and it's mate died so she got two others shipped in so the remaining PD would not be lonely. I am not sure which PD was left without a mate and am wondering if the two males came together and the female was the one left alone. Also, Chip, one of the males is very healthy looking and big, and so is the female Dale, although she is smaller than he is. But the other Male, Snuggles is really small and does not have a big belly like the other two although he eats plenty and they do not fight over food or anything. He is also much darker in color than Chip and Dale....

Any insight or ideas would be greatly appreciated - thank you
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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old 10-28-2007, 09:55 PM
Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 4
My experience

Congrats on your new babies!! I have 2 PDs and wish I could own a million more!

Whos cage are they in? Do they have toys? How many hours a day do they get to play out of the cage?

I will say, I think your girl is depressed... in a sense. The other two PDs have a bond. As with my experience...
I got 4 PDs back in 2002... they were picked from a group of about 40. I had no clue of the sexes but my 2 havent ever had babies so they must be the same sex... my brothers 2 havent either so they must be same sex as well. They all lived together in the beginning until he moved away. My brother adopted a third PD shortly after and the new PD bonded with one of his first... this was back in 2003 & no babies so thus same sex. He found that one of his original PDs (chancy) was being singled out while the other two bonded. They would sleep together and chancy would be in the opposite corner. She would also shy away from the food bowl when the other two were eating. She became real "depressed" and lost some weight and just didnt act right anymore. The vet told my brother even though they werent physically hurting her that he should not have all three together... so my brother ended up giving the adopted PD back and thankfully if fixed the problem. I personally thought they wouldnt rebond but im glad I was wrong.
Also, when my brother came to visit once we had both cages & connected them together. The PDs all got along ok out but we found that they werent all sleeping together... my 2 together & his two... and they had been old pals just a yr prior. I dont understand either.. I would like to.. but these are very unique animals. Much time is needed just for them to get use to a new owner and new place. This is my only experience and I think that getting more PDs could be successful but much research & time is needed to introduce these guys. PDs need lots of out of cage time, proper diet, & toys to keep them entertained. I would suggest lots of out of the cage play time with toys, tunnels, things they can climb on and hope that they all bond. If they are just in the cage its more likely one will get excluded at sleepy time. Your outsider needs to build her confidence. She also needs to be content with you as her new owner. She may be bonded with her old owner. From what I read, PDs do not like change of cage, asmosphere, owner, etc. I change toys all the time but their cage is there safe place and they go nuts when I move it to clean it. I say, if your three PDs have been living together for awhile unsuccessfully, I say you need to look into making your outsider more happy by separating her and trying to find another PD for her to bond with or a person with all the time in the world for her.
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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old 10-31-2007, 04:32 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 13
Thanks for the help. Both my husband and I work from our farm and are with our PD's all day - they spend a great deal of time out of their cage and when they are in it, they are central to everything that is going on in the house. They have all bonded well with us and love cuddling and being held - my entire evening is consumed just with cuddle time for them. They are getting a long well now - they have always slept together and ate together and played, that's never changed, just the one male was causing trouble, but only for two days. No idea what was going on, but all problems have ceased so far.

The female is bonded closer to us than she is to the males, but she still grooms and cuddles with both males.

According to their previous owners these PD's have lived together for three years now, and sometimes get in disputes, but it is always short lived.

I am keeping a close eye on their behavior as usual and will take further action if Chip (our big male) keeps causing trouble. But as I am sitting her looking at them all burrowed up and cuddled up together, I have hope

Thanks for your help.
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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old 11-06-2007, 08:25 PM
Join Date: Oct 2007
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Thats sounds great. Im glad you are feeling better about the behavior concerns. Those guys must be sooo happy to get all the attention you have to give them. Post a picture if you get a chance.
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