Pigs are popular pets
Truth in labeling laws really ought to apply to pets as well. When a pet is advertised as a “micro” or “teacup” sized animal, most reasonable people would think that it would be a small animal. You might think such an animal would be 10 pounds maybe 12 pounds at most. Imagine your shock if you brought home a “micro” or “teacup” pig and ended up with a 120 pound porker roaming you house.
More and more people are acquiring pigs as pets. Pigs are cute smart and fun. They are trainable and can even be house-broken. The key to enjoying your pet pig is knowing what you are getting into. Find a reputable breeder that is honest in disclosing the expected adult size of the pig.
You need to consider what other animals you have at home. There are enough reported incidences of dogs attacking pet pigs that live in their home to make this a concern. Dogs and pigs are known to live happily together but be aware there is always a risk, no matter how small the dog attacking the pig.
Pigs respond well to training and that is an important part of making them a pleasant pet. Untrained pigs, particularly those that have not been spayed or neutered, can become aggressive towards their owners.
Perhaps the most common health problem in pet pigs is obesity. Pigs are a natural at gaining weight. A discussion with your veterinarian on diet is essential to keeping your pig happy and healthy. An overweight pig suffers from joint problems and even blindness as the rolls of fat around the eyes can become so large that vision is obstructed.
Pigs are very susceptible to heat stress. It is essential that a pig has access to an area where they can cool down. This is especially important during our long hot summers. A cooling off area can be a portion of the yard that is in the shade and kept muddy. A kiddy pool filled with water can be used as well.
Pigs have a known antipathy towards being still for an exam or treatment. To that end, for your veterinarian to do a thorough exam, sedation is almost always needed. Pigs tolerate sedation very well and the examination process is easier for all concerned.
Pet pigs need regular care like any other pet. Vaccinations, hoof trims, spaying and neutering are all part of keeping a happy, healthy pet pig no matter what the size.