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Facts about Pigs  

Facts about Pigs

Pigs are the fourth smartest animal group on the planet, following only humans, apes and chimps, whales and dolphins.

Potbellied Pigs, are a smaller member of the pig family that have been on this earth for some 50 million years

Pigs are Hyper-allergenic alternatives to traditional pets like cats and dogs.

The Potbellied Pet Pig is small weighing about 80 to 150 lbs and about 16 to 20 inches at the shoulder. By comparison the domestic pig (hog) at maturity can weigh over 800 lbs and stand over 36 inches at the shoulder.

Mini Potbelly pigs at GLMM  weigh less than 150lbs, and Micro Minis weigh less than 85lbs.

It is better to choose a Pigs based on height and length of its parents.  A pigs weight can fluctuate quickly and be very deceiving.  Pigs have dense compact bodies, especially when compared to dogs or people. A 150-pound pig is much smaller than an 80-pound German shepherd or a 100-pound person.  A 150-pound pig is not as big as one may imagine!

Pet Pigs have a natural gentle disposition.

Pigs are clean, almost odor free, smart, and like people and other animals.

Winston Churchill is quoted as saying that :
"Dogs look up to you, cats look down on you and pigs are willing to treat you as an equal"

Pigs do not actually have sweat glands. Pigs cannot sweat! This means they need plenty of fresh water available at all times to prevent overheating.

Pigs keep cool by splashing in water or rolling in mud.

Pigs generally make good house pets.

Pigs often watch where their food comes from, so they can learn to open cabinets and even the refrigerator!

Pigs live 10 to 15 years on average.

Indoor pigs can be taught to use an indoor potty box.

Pigs like to shred newspaper and play with infant toys, empty water bottles, dog and cat toys and balls.

The most common potbellied pig health problems are diet related. Overweight pigs suffer from heart problems, blindness and arthritis. Underfed pigs (often in an attempt to keep them small) usually die from malnutrition or complications from malnutrition. Pigs need lots of fresh water at all times.

At 1 to 5 days old, a piglet should be given iron.  The vet can give piglets a shot of Iron Dextran to avoid the piglets from becoming anemic. Pigs are born with limited iron reserves and sow’s milk may not contain enough iron for them.

If you choose to vaccinate your pig, then they should be vaccinated a minimum of every 12 months.  Most vets will give a dose of Ivomec or Dectomax to treat/prevent worms and mange (skin mites).  They may also suggest Pleuroguard 4 to prevent hemophiles, pluro pneumonia, rhinitis and erysipelas and  Respisure to prevent microplasma pneumonia.

Vaccines for Bondatella, Erysipelas, and Pasteurella can be given on a yearly basis after an initial double dose at 6 – 10 weeks of age and again at 12 – 14 weeks of age. 

The Tetanus vaccine can be given yearly.

Leptospirosis 5 Way and Parvovirus are recommended more for breeding females but **Please be careful, reactions to the Leptospirosis 5 Way vaccinations are common. 

The Lymes vaccine & Rabies vaccine are not approved for use in pigs. Indoor and Outdoor pigs are not likely to contract Rabies because their bodies are very resistant to the disease. 
Remember, Dog and cat vaccines are not acceptable to use for pigs.

We believe EVERY pet pig should be spayed or neutered.

Generally non-spayed females go into heat every three weeks, and un-neutered males may mark their territory and omit a foul smelling odor as they reach puberty.

A pig is not considered fully grown until 3 years of age.

All pigs grow tusks. Females grow small, sharp tusks that rarely stick out of their mouths. Neutered males will have a set protruding from their lips by age 1 1/2 to 2.  Tusks may need to be trimmed once a year.

All pigs have naturally dry skin (remember they don't have sweat glands like we do!) Besides making sure they have access to fresh, clean water, you can give them an oil pill once a week, or put 1 teaspoon of olive oil in their food weekly or even put olive oil or lotion directly on their skin.

Use any good lotion on your pig's skin as often as you like, which will help to keep the skin soft.  Just be sure your pig is not allergic to it.  Test your pig by putting a small spot of lotion on your pig in the same place for 3 days in a row, if there is no skin reaction, chances are your pig is not be allergic to the lotion.  Some pig owners use Avon's "Skin So Soft" Lotion for their pigs dry skin with good sucess.

It's not necessary to bathe your pig on a regular basis. However it is fine to give him a bath when he gets dirty.

Pigs like a good brushing.

Pigs like to eat! Pigs will do just about anything for food.

A pig's size (height & length) is determined by his genes, not by his diet (unless he is overfed and becomes overweight). Never under feed a pig to keep it small, it is cruel!

Feed your pig the proper amount of food as recommended on the Mini Pig food bag by the manufacturer, at least twice a day according to your pigs age, size, activity level and environment.

Supplement your pig with plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables.

Pigs LOVE treats! Some good treats are plain, air-popped popcorn, carrot slices, grapes, raisins, apples, and individual pieces of dry cereal (Cheerios or Chex).

Indoor pigs may need extra vitamins.  You can give your pig 1/2 to 1 children's complete vitamin with iron everyday.  Walmart sells a inexpensive gummy type that works fine.

Indoor pigs may need their hooves trimmed every 1 to 2 years.  Your yearly vet care should include, hooves and teeth/tusks as well as iron, wormer/mite, and any additional booster vaccines you choose for your pig.

It can be difficult to find a vet willing and able to treat potbellied pigs. Potbellied pigs are NOT farm hogs. There are differences in their medical treatment.  Make sure your Vet has worked on other miniature pet pigs as the correct vaccine dosages and anesthesia are very important.

A indoor pig will sleep in a pet bed or crate but many prefer to sleep in bed with their owners.

Pigs can be harness trained and most pigs love to go for car rides.

Outdoor pigs need a sturdy, rainproof barn or doghouse. In cold climates, it must also be wind proof and have enough room for plenty of straw and blankets to keep the pig warm.  We recommend outdoor pigs to have additional vaccines such as  Pleurogard 4 to prevent hemophiles, pluro pneumonia, rhinitis and erysipelas and  Respisure to prevent microplasma pneumonia.

Toxic Plants 
Some household and yard plants may be toxic to your potbellied pig. Be careful when allowing your pig around the following plants:   


Acorns (some are alright, too many can
      cause Kidney or Liver damage over time.)

Aloe Vera


Apple (seeds contain arsenic and are only
          harmful if they are chewed in quanity.)

Apple Leaf Croton

Apricot (pit)

Asparagus Fern

Autumn Crocus

Avocado (fruit and pit)


Baby's Breath

Bird of Paradise


Branching Ivy


Buddist Pine


Calla Lily

Castor Bean


Charming Dieffenbachia

Cherry (seeds and wilting leaves)

Chinese Evergreen

Christmas Rose




Corn Plant

Cornstalk Plant


Cuban Laurel

Cutleaf Philodendron




Devil's Ivy


Dracaena Palm

Dragon Tree

Dumb Cane

Easter Lily (especially in cats!!!!)


Elephant Ears

Emerald Feather

English Ivy


German Ivy

Giant Dumb Cane

Glacier Ivy

Gold Dieffenbachia

Gold Dust Dracaena

Golden Pothos

Hahn's Self-Branching Ivy

Heartland Philodendron

Hurricane Plant

Indian Rubber Plant

Janet Craig Dracaena

Japanese Show Lily (especially cats !!!)

Jeusalem Cherry


Lacy Tree Philodendron

Madagascar Dragon Tree

Marble Queen


Mexican Breadfruit

Miniature Croton


Morning Glory

Mother-in Law's Tongue


Needlepoint Ivy





Oriental Lily (especially in cats!)

Peace Lily

Peach (wilting leaves and pits)

Pencil Cactus

Plumosa Fern

Poinsettia (low toxicity)

Poison Ivy

Poison Oak


Precatory Bean


Red Emerald

Red Princess

Red-Margined Dracaena


Ribbon Plant

Taro Vine

Tiger Lily (especially cats!!!)

Tomato Plant (green fruit, stem and leaves)

Tree Philodendron

Tropic Snow Dieffenbachia

Weeping Fig









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