Unlike a cat or hamster, which are easy to feed and can move around with you, something like a pig is a huge investment. Not only will it require time, it will need money and effort. With this in mind, we’ve compiled a list of considerations to make before adding a pig to your family!
Space and Environment
Not only can you not keep a pig in the home, it will spend the majority of its day disturbing the land on which it will explore. Although a larger space is always welcomed, experts suggest a living space of 36 square meters per pig. As well as exploring, your pig(s) will need space for sleeping and dunging.
During the colder months, they’ll need somewhere dry to rest and lie down. Also, this straw-bedded accommodation should be well ventilated and cleaned frequently (this will keep parasites to a minimum).
Finally, we should also mention the fencing since pigs are actually incredibly strong. The fencing should be robust enough to keep the pigs inside, and other animals out. Every so often, we recommend surveying their environment to ensure that they won’t get injured, caught, or trapped on anything.
Lifespan and Your Future
Next, you also need to remember that some pigs can actually live a full 25 years. Even with the average lifespan at five to ten years, you still need to be sure that you can look after the pig for this length of time. If you’re planning to move home in the next five years, maybe this isn’t the right time for a pig (unless you have the resources to move your piggy friend across to the new location!).
Some people will tell you that you need to be careful around pigs, and others will tell you that they’re great to be around. Ultimately, it all depends on the pig in question. Before spending money, consider speaking to the seller about the pig’s temperament and remember that you could end up with one that requires caution.
Often, people are drawn to the cuteness of piglets, and we can see the appeal. However, you mustn’t forget that they will only get bigger. Though it sounds obvious, this is a consideration often forgotten when buying pigs. Even with Vietnamese pot-bellied pigs and other miniature breeds, they can still reach 70 pounds (double this when overfed!).
With a regular breed, there’s no reason why your pig won’t and can’t hit 300 pounds. Are you ready for an animal of this size?
When considering a pig, you cannot forget the legal side that comes with owning and keeping a farm animal. Thanks to the welfare act that protects these animals, you need to provide them with:
- Somewhere dry to sleep
- A good diet
- An environment that allows them to behave in a way that’s natural
- Housing apart from other animals
- Protection against injury and illness
If you can’t provide any one of these things, we recommend steering clear.
To finish, here are some more quick-fire things to consider before owning a pig:
- Do you have the time to deal with a pig that’s misbehaving?
- Can you afford the vet bills and having your pig spayed or neutered?
- Are you ready to have an area of your land destroyed?
- Will you have time for a pig when you grow your family?
The more you stop and think, you more you will come to a sensible decision. If you really do have the time, resources, and love for a pig, we wish you the best of luck along this rewarding path!