Just Another Year?

That was 2011! Just another year, or was it? For me the highs were our seventh Piggy PM held at Active Vetcare with the support, as always, of The Hay Experts, Gorgeous Guineas and the band of enthusiastic volunteers. 2011 also saw the second Guinea Pig Welfare Wheek which reached a larger number of guineas than the first one did, thanks to Jenny Towers of Active Vetcare Tilehurst for her continued support with all things guinea pig, also to Gorgeous Guineas and Supreme for supplying useful goodies for the Goody Bags that were handed out.

The low point of the year was the closing of Reading Guinea Pig Rescue in September; no regrets, just that “end of an era” feeling. Herby and Blossom (both now rehomed) were the RGPR final intakes, Herby had been a guest here previously and was adopted to live with Goldie, his Humans were devastated, although prepared for the eventuality, when they had to move abroad and could not take Herby and Blossom. They knew, providing they just had the 2, that I would take Herby and Blossom back to rehome them should the need arise. I am sure that had circumstances been different they would have had more than 2 guineas! RGPR helped guineas find good homes for 10 and a half years, every home was checked and when the Animal Welfare Act was passed that was observed and quoted as “minimum requirements”, every guinea pig also went with the promise that should, at any time, they find themselves without a Human again they can return. This didn’t happen often but I was always pleased that Humans felt happy that their little charges would find very good homes. After all, they were best placed to know the hoops you have to jump through to get a RGPR guinea, seeing it from the other side of the coin simply confirmed that minimum Animal Welfare Act standards are the very basics one should be rehoming to. The hardest part of all of this was turning away guineas (I will still take back any I have rehomed and have kept the facilities should the need arise). I had anticipated this! Despite being sure about closing the rescue I wanted to continue to be involved, and so Guinea Pigs United was tentatively born, it will take its own direction, there is a need for its presence as a means of communication between Humans if nothing else. “I see you have set up a dating agency for guinea pigs! Fab idea!” A comment from a devoted Human that has been adopting guinea pigs from me for a few years now, he and his girlfriend were thrown in at the deep end when they adopted Goldie, a Satin, who later developed Osteodystrophy; they had, of course, been warned that this was a possibility and if it did develop what they would need to do. Poor Goldie had been living with a rabbit previously and was fortunate to spend his last years in a Cavy Cage inside the house.

Guinea Pigs United is proving more useful for those looking for guinea pigs than those needing to rehome. Questions that can be asked when getting a guinea pig or when finding a home for one have been put up in the hope they will be of use. A few have been rehomed this year but often it is lone boars looking for a new home and the choice of their new friend cannot be widened until someone pays for a castration or someone willing to take him to choose a friend comes along.

A Happy New Year to everyone, wishing you the best to you and yours. 🙂

Herby n Blossom



December 31, 2011   Posted in: Planet Guinea, Rescue