Some call them “nose-offs”. I call them “nose battles”. It’s where guinea pigs living together might have a dispute and will try to solve it by raising their noses in the air, and the highest nose wins the battle.
Butter has always been a fairly dominant pig, so nose battles were like one of his favorite ways of making sure everyone knew who was the boss pig. But that didn’t mean he always won his nose battles. :O (Luckily, he’s also a graceful loser, otherwise things could’ve been pretty bad.) There are a few of them that stuck out to me, and here they are:
Soon after I introduced Bianca to the team, B^3 (Butter, Belle, Bianca) moved into their cage together for the first time as a trio. Both Butter and Belle spent a decent amount of time during intros making sure Bianca knew where her place was (at the bottom of the totem pole), but Butter wanted to be extra sure, so he went up to her to and initiated a nose battle (by swiping his nose upward at her nose). She didn’t get it and stared at him for a couple of seconds before finally raising her nose as well…and won. Butter walked away, disappointed. 😐
(There have a been few other attempts by Butter, but Bianca won each time. Judging by how long it took her to raise her nose, I’m not sure she even knew what was going on.)
This time, Butter was determined to win, so when he initiated another nose battle with Bianca, he waited for her to move her face. When she did, Butter was SOOOO EXCITED THAT HE RAISED HIS NOSE UPUPUP!!! INTOTHEAIR!!!!!!!! (As in, pointed STRAAAAIGHT up toward the ceiling at a 90 degree angle.) And waited a few seconds to give Bianca enough time to raise her nose as well. After what he thought was a sufficient amount of time, he looked back to Bianca to see if he won…only to find her looking straight at him in confusion.
-______-;;; -Butter probably
Butter initiated the nose battle as usual. This time, Bianca didn’t waste time raising her nose BUT OH GUESS WHAT? Butter won!! He was soo happy he popcorned*!!
* Bunny people might recognize this as a binky.
But What About Belle?
So why doesn’t he ever challenge Belle to a nose battle? Well, uhhhhh…you see, he does actually, but she HAAATES nose battles and will just sit there and scream at him in whispery tones (it sounds like a screech almost), until he just gives up.
Butter, The Mediator
In a lot of cases, neutered males can act as the mediator between two girls bitching at each other. More often than not, Belle and Bianca will have some sort of dispute. One day, while this was happening as usual, Butter decided to take up his destiny as The Mediator Pig! (Being the sole neutered male in their cage.) Nose battles as we know are his favorite way of solving problems, so when he saw that Belle and Bianca were arguing over something, he happened to nearby (just a few inches away), and raised his nose, like “Oh ohh, I know! What about–?” But Belle just crabbed at him like “No, we’re not doing that!” Then he just walked away like “ohh .___.”
(Butter recently, has been reduced from boss pig to henpecked husband, btw.)
As of writing this, I’ve had to move Bianca from their cage (16 square feet) to a much much smaller cage, following her spay. Her recheck is Monday, so I’m sure (hopefully) Butter will welcome her back with open arms, just so he can have someone to nose battle with again. He’s trying with Belle lately, and well….yeah.