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People & Pets



According to Snapple Facts, it is illegal in Switzerland to own only one Guinea pig because they are prone to loneliness.

Jackie Gautsch doesn’t have to worry if her two Guinea pigs — Baby Lady and Monkey — are depressed, because they now have each other.

CV_2016Sept_PeopleAndPets: Jackie and Matt Gautsch with their to weimaraners. Wednesday August 10, 2016

Jackie and Matt Gautsch with their to Weimaraners. Corporal, 8, and Tia, 13.

“I have a pet problem,” says Gautsch about her penchant for being a person who can’t say “no” when an animal is in need.

Baby Lady and Monkey aren’t your average breeds. They are skinny pigs, which means they both don’t have much fur, which is very different from a typical furry Guinea pig.

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“They look like a shaved Guinea pig,” said Gautsch.

Most skinny pigs have only a small amount of fur on their muzzles, legs and feet, but not anywhere else, although some do have a sparse fuzzy layer of fur on their backs. Fur aside, there are few differences between a skinny pig and a Guinea pig.

Gautsch said she found Monkey while on Craigslist. She was surfing the site looking for something else when she saw his picture. He didn’t look healthy, and she did what a “rescuer” does — went out and brought him home.

Gautsch can handle her pet problem. What she has more difficulty with is when her pets have a problem. And Monkey recently did: bumblefoot.

“Sometimes they just get it,” she said of the ailment in which an animal develops sores on its feet.  Guinea pigs have four front toes and three back toes, but Monkey recently had two pinky toes amputated.

CV_2016Sept_PeopleAndPets: Jackie Gautsch's two Skinny Pigs, Baby Lady and Monkey. Wednesday August 10, 2016

Jackie Gautsch’s two Skinny Pigs, Baby Lady and Monkey.

Thankfully, he’s on the mend. He still blinks with one eye open, but that doesn’t bother Gautsch.

“He’s cute, and he’s snuggly, and I just like small animals,” she said.

She used to own rabbits, but this is her first go-round with the skinnies.

Due to Monkey’s need for companionship, Gautsch felt the need to acquire Baby Lady.

“She’s really talkative,” Gautsch said. The two “gab” by squeaking at one another. Baby Lady usually has more to say, but Monkey hasn’t been feeling well, which proves that it doesn’t matter if you’re a Guinea pig or a human — everybody needs a good friend.


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