How often to they eat?
A brand new baby, will eat every 1 to 3 hrs. As they get older, they will eat more formula and less often. They have NO problem letting you know when they are hungry!!!
Alot of people think that the Sow feeds the babies all the time, when in fact, they feed every 1-3hrs as well. The milk drops down into the nipples at feeding time, the rest of the time they are just sucking like a baby does on a pacifier. A baby pig will take a pacifier and be very content in between feedings!
We Guarantee EVERY PIG SOLD to be 100% healthy & friendly & the size it is supossed to
What do they eat?
Baby Pigs need to be on a special formula to accomadate their specific needs. We have found out that ProPig's Supplemental Formula Blend works excellent and has everything they need in it, & they like the taste, so they eat it with no problem!
ProPig's line of foods can be purchased from some vets, online, & through us. When you purchase a baby from us, they come with enough formula to last aprox. 7-10 days.
Most Commonly Asked Questions For Those Considering A Bottle Baby And Answers...
This page covers only the most commonly asked questions about bottle babies. If you have a question that is not on the board or want a more detailed answer, please feel to contact us with your question and we will be more than happy to get you an answer!
Please remember when considering a bottle baby, they are alot like having a new baby! They take alot of work in the early weeks of life and can be very time consuming! But if you have the time to devote to a brand new baby, in the coming weeks it will by far pay off when your baby is following you all over and curling up in your lap to take a nap!
Whether you choose to get a bottle baby, a baby that has already been weaned, or an older pig, if you will be good to them, take care of them, and spend just a little bit of time with them, you will have a friend for life!
Because of the bond a pig will create with its owner being so much stronger than that of a cat or dog, and their intelligence level being so higher, is the reason pigs are starting to be chosen and used more often for therapy animals and pets all over the world!
Can the pig be inside in air conditioning?
Yes! However, a baby pig does not begin producing their own body heat until they are 2 -5wks old & will not fully produce it until 14-16 wks old. So they need to have a heat lamp or pad in their area so they can get under or on it when they are cold. But they also need to be able to move out from under if they get to warm. Their normal body temp runs about 101 degrees. So you cannot keep your house warm enough to accomodate their needs. A heat source is very crucial in raising a baby!
Lamps are recommended for babies under 5wks of age because they give off more heat than a pad. Babies over 5wks, will do fine with a pad, however is CANNOT have the auto-shut off. It has to be able to be on 24/7.
How do I know that I am doing everything right & my Pig is growing like it should?
It's very easy to tell! If your pig is getting enough of everything it needs, it will be very content, have a smooth & shiny coat, and fairly active at feeding time.
Small breed pigs grow slow, but they will grow fairly fast the first two mo, after that they will slow down alot! You can ask your vet or us for a growth chart to see how well they are growing!
How much do they eat?
A small breed baby pig will not eat much at all to start with, but will eat often. Of course as they get older, this will increase. A baby that is 2-12 days old, will only eat 1-2 tsp at a time. If their belly is nice & round after you have fed, they are getting plenty. If not, you need to try again.
You will know when it is time to increase the amount because they will suck the bottle dry and squeal for more!
How long to they stay on the bottle?
They will need to stay on the bottle for AT LEAST 2wks if at all possible, however alot of babies will refuse a bottle & have to be syringe fed until you can get them over to a bowl, so prepare yourself for this if you purchase a bottle baby & remember, just because they will take a bottle from you, does not mean they will take it for someone else. After the first 2 wks they can be converted over to eating formula out of a bowl. However if you choose to do this, staying on fomula until they are 10-12 wks old is CRUCIAL in their well being! Formula helps bulid their immune systems, and if weened to early, it can be very detrimental to your baby!
You can keep your baby on the bottle for the entire 8 wks if you choose to do so. This will help build an outstanding bond between you & your baby!
Most Commonly Asked Questions From People Considering Purchasing A Pig
"How hard are pigs to train?"
Pigs are very easy to train & learn very fast! Because of their intelligence level, they are generally much eaiser to train than most other animals. They are very eager to learn & want to please their owners. Most of the time, a pig will take about 1/4 the amount of time that it takes to train a dog!
"What about potty training...do they have to use a litter box, or can they go outside?"
Potty training is super easy if you get a young pig or one from a breeder that has housed the pigs for sale, indoors! Pigs are similar to cats in the potty aspects. If you start a baby that is only a few days old, with a litter box, they will naturally go to it. As long as it is kept within a reasonable distance from they, they will continue using it and as they get older, it does not matter how far it is away because they will have gained full control of their bodily functions and will go it, wherever it is in the house. But like young children, you have to always remember "out of sight, out of mind" meaning if they do not see their litter box, or if it is far away, they will not use it. So it is very important not to give them free run of your home or even access to a large area until they are older. If you do, they will start "pottying" wherever & it is very difficult to correct once you have let this happen. Crates are very crucial in the entire training process of pig & the potty training is no exception. Getting one to go outdoors, is as simple as taking them outside about 30 minutes after meals. It will take about three times for them to understand what you wanting, then they will do it everytime if going outdoors is available. Also, if you have a dog that goes outdoors, generally the pig will pair up with it and start going where the dog goes!
"Do they stink?"
A pig does not generally stink or harbor a "pig odor" like certain breeds of dogs do a "dog odor". However a male pig, that HAS NOT been altered, will put off a "musky" odor once he has reached maturity, which will beging as early as 3 mo. Having him neutered at a young age, will eliminate this & is a must if you are planning on keeping him as an indoor pet.
"I have small children...how are they with Little One's?"
Great! Pigs are being used more & more for special needs therapy & companion pets for Children of all ages. Pigs are being chosen because of their docile & gentle temperment, as well as be affectionate towards their people.
"Will they become destructive?"
Generally speaking, no! However, pigs that have been inbred or crossed with feral or large breed domestics have a high probability of becoming destructive because it is in their nature. So be sure you trust who you are purchasing from. Small Breed Pigs are not known for being destructive, however like with anything there may be exceptions to this, although it is very rare. But because of their intelligence level, they will tend to get bored and get into things, like a toddler. For this reason, a crate is a very crucial part of the training process. I have had people tell me they dont use crates, because its cruel. What is cruel, is not crating them until they are fully trained and allowing them to get into something that will harm them, when they do not know any better.
"What do they eat?"
They make special blends of Pig Chow or Pig Feed that is formulated for Small Breed Pigs. All natural & grain & soy free & 10% or less grain & soy free content feeds are ideal. Grains & soybeans have natural growth enhancers to "grow" pigs fast and are used as the top ingredients in "freezer & show hog" foods for this reason. These foods also contain alot of "fillers" and will make you pig have many more bowel movements, that will be very loose & stinky. So it is defiently ideal to will a high quality non grain & soybean based food. These foods can be difficult to find & more costly, but are worth the difference in price if you want to keep your pig the size it should be. Remember, if you eat McDonalds everyday you will be prone to excessive gain. This also applies to pigs if you feed your them a low quality, cheap & grain or soybean based food. They also eats fruits, veggies, lean meats, eggs, fish, yogurt, cheese, etc. Basically if you aim towards a "Diabetic Diet" for them, they will do great! The only thing they CANNOT have is Avacado, as it is toxic to them.
"What age pig should I get?"
They younger, the better! 3-6wks of age is ideal! So if you dont have the time or patience for a bottle baby, no worries! As long as you get a baby less than about 4 mo, you should be good. However the best bonds are usually created between 3 days & 12wks old.
"What if I want an older or rescued pig?"
Remember, not everyone is "cut out" for these guys. Usually, not always, but in more cases, than not, when someone lets an older pig go, there is a reason behind it! Keep in mind, pigs require structure & training from the BEGINNING, just like children! The old saying "You can't teach an old dog new tricks" applies to pigs also. You don't want your first experience to end up being a bad one because of someone else's lack of knowledge or training & this very likely to happen if you purchase and older pig. Older pigs & rescues usually do better for experienced pig owners that already understand the way a pigs mind works & have already had training experience with them. Make sure if you decide on an older pig that you have alot of time and patience to put fourth and be prepared to have to try to fix what someone else has let become a problem. When thinking of getting a rescue pig, make sure you know why that pig became a rescue. "Rescue Pigs" cover a broad spectrum. From being mistreated, or confiscated due lack of care reasons, to owners surrendering their "problem pet" either they have created or purchased from someone that created the problem before they ever got the animal, and so on. Either way, do your homework & make sure you know what your getting in too! Its often much better to get one you can train the way you want from the beginning, unless you have exceptional animal training experience & skills and have general knowledge & experience about the animal your wanting to get.
"Do these pigs get big tusks like the ones you see on tv?"
Tusks are testosterone fed, meaning they grow from the testosterone that the body produces. Both males & females produce testosterone. So both genders have tusks. However, the females & altered males produce very little. So, they both have tusks, but nothing like you see on tv or with a wild or feral pig. They will not grow outside of their lips and be visable unless they have already before having the males altered. A pigs mouth is made differently than a dogs mouth, but the best way to describe their tusks, is they are very similar in shape & size to a dog, of the same size, K-9 teeth. However an un-altered male, in the bigger of the small breeds, once they have 4+yrs age on them, will have tusks that grow beyond the lips, and can exceed 3 inches in legnth, but still nothing in comparrison to the ones you see on tv with the wild & feral pigs.
"Do pigs need yearly vet visits & shots like dogs?"
No. Pigs are considered livestock and are not required to have annual anything. However, there are certain vaccines that are highly recommended for pigs to receive to ensure that they live long & healthy lives! These can be ordered from most breeders, through the vet they use, or from your local vet, to administer yourself or most vets will do it for you along with an office visit & physical. Pigs DO NOT require rabies shots & DO NOT need them. They can actually be harmful to a pig.
"Do I have to have a permit to own a pig?"
No, because small breed pigs are not considered exotic, they do not require a permit.
"How often should a pig be wormed?"
Pigs need either a combo wormer that covers both, internal & external parasites to be give as a parasite prevention, every 28 days or a wormer for internal parasites every 60-90 days, depending on where & how he is housed and a wormer for external parasites every 28 days. Again, this is the prevention schedule. Its much eaiser to prevent, than to treat.
"Is it really necessary to worm a pig every 28 days?"
Yes. Is it important to give the family dog or cat a flea prevention every 28 days? Of course it is because you dont want your house infested with fleas or your family pet, because an infestation can be fatal. Pigs dont get infested with fleas because they are unable to penetrate a pigs skin. But they will get infested with mites, even if they never go outdoors because they will get carried in to them from your shoes & other pets. A mite infestation on a pig, can also be fatal. The only difference is, mites do not affect people like fleas do. The particular strain of mites that pigs get, will not get on humans, or any other animals. Basically mites are the "pig version" of fleas. They just cant be seen as easily as fleas. Both fleas & mites are parasites that feed off blood. Therefore when an infestation occurs, if not treated quickly, they will continue to feed off their host until they no longer can. Meaning, they will suck them dry of blood. In the process of this, the animal will become anemic, and their vital organs will start shutting down, then they die.
"I want to see all the baby pigs and pick out the one that likes me...Why do alot of breeders avoid this?"
This is avoided alot of times for several reasons, but the main reasons, generally speaking for myself & the other breeders we have associated with, are this: Pigs are not like puppies & kittens. They are not going to be happy to see you when you arrive and crowd around you wanting you to pet & play with them. They start their bond very early in life and bond with the people that care for them & interact with them daily. There isnt going to be one that takes to you right off the bat, this will never happen because of a pigs chemical makeup in their brain. Everyone of them is going to want to run away and hide from you because they do not know you. You will never know how any pig is going to be with your family until you get it to your home and settled into the new enviorment, which usually takes 3-7 days. Everytime new people are introduced to a "pig family" it stresses them. When the babies become stressed, the Mom becomes angry and the natural instinct of all Mothers kick into "protection mode"! Once this mode kicks in, liability risks become present to the breeder/farm owner & danger will become present to the visitors. Imagine taking your 2yr into a big room full of people, setting him down, and walking away. After just a few moments, hysteria mode sets in. This is exactly what happens to baby pigs when families come to visit them, except their Mother is right there. So in all reality, despite what you may think, it is much better for all parties involved, for the buyer to pick a baby, or even narrow it down to a few babies and get with the breeder away from the rest of their litter & mom. Meet at a neutral place, so you can discuss your concerns with the seller or have a phone or email confrence ahead of time to make sure all your questions & concerns are covered. Also, if you are concerned that you may possibly get one your not happy with, which is a possibility for anyone, find out the exchange/return policy before purchasing. Any reputable & decent breeder understands how this process works & should have an exchange policy in effect for anyone that purchases, in case they do get a pig that is just not for their family. This policy should be posted to their website, on their invoice & also on something that comes with the pig. The other main reason behind breeders avoiding this, is exposure. Baby pigs start vaccination rounds the day they are born. Like human babies, baby pigs are highly subseptable to certain diseases & illnesses being carried in on them. These can be carried in on your clothing, hands, even shoes! Something as simple as a cold or stomach bug we have picked up from the grocery store or school, can be deadly to baby pigs under 6wks of age! Baby pigs are far more likely to contract something from humans, than humans contracting something from pigs. This is why proper sanitation techniques & cleanliness such as hand washing, using hand sanitizer & disinfecting & cleaning your pigs area is stressed to new pig owners when purchasing a baby less than 6 wks of age. Most vets highly stress & recommend to both pet & consumption pig breeders not to allow visitors for these reasons. In almost all cases (99%) of a human contracting something from a pig, has to do with consumption. The only recorded contractions from pet pigs to humans is internal parasites. The same parasites (round worms, hook worms, nodular worms, etc) that can be passed from a dog or cat to a human & again, most of these cases these have to do with the consumption of pork. But regardless, that is why parasite preventions are supossed to be given to all "pet animals" and are highly recommended & made available.
I have other animals, will a pig get along with them?
YES! A pig usually excells when it is paired up with something else. Whether it be a dog, cat, rabbit, or a full time human companion! They love company, regardless of what it is! It is actually highly recommended that you limit the interaction between the pig & other pets when you first get them, so that they will create their main bond with you & not them. Once they have begin creating a strong bond with you, it is ok to give them full access to your other animals. The main bond then, will be with you & they will pair up with the other animals & become great buddies.
"Can a pig tag along for family outings, like a dog can?"
Absolutly! As long as you take them places and do things with them early on, it becomes a way of life for them! Several people have a pig that will ride in a car & walk on a leash just like a dog will. This is how so many are used in therapy & therapy assistance & is also another reason why it is better to purchase one at a young age.
"Does a boy or girl pig make the best pet?"
It depends on who you ask! There is no documented proof anywhere that one makes a better pet than the other as long as the males are altered, however everyone seems to have a personal preference as to which one they think makes the better pet. Ask your breeder the pros & cons of each gender, ask other pig owners which they prefer and why. Then go from there on making the decision of which gender to purchase.
"Do pigs bite?"
This is such a rhetorical question, but by far one of the top 3 questions asked! This is like asking if a dog bites or a cat scratches! Of course a pig will bite...IF provoked, but what animal wont? Pigs are very docile & passive. That is why they are being used more & more for therapy & companion pets for children. There is a far lesser chance of you or your child getting bit by a pig, than a dog. Pigs are very durable & have an excellent temperment. When something or someone goes to pulling on their ears or tail, or trying to climb on them (like alot of small children will) it does not affect them like it does a dog or cat. Their skin is so tough, most of the time it will not even phase them. But, even when it does, they will get up and move before ever even trying to bite. A pig has to be seriously hurt or terrified before they will even try to bite, with the exception of a mother pig & her babies.
"If I have 2 or 3 pigs, how likely are they to attack something like a group of dogs?"
They WONT period, if they are pets. Pigs are a "herd" animal. They carry the genetic trait of caring & protecting. Unlike "pack" animals, they do not posses a high prey drive. For example, if 3 pigs are laying around the yard and your kids are in the yard playing, if something comes in that doesnt belong there, their main concern is "their herd" which would be your kids. So instead of automatically attacking what doesnt belong, you would find that 2 of the pigs would be "guarding" your children by going to stand close by to them or laying in front of them, while the 3rd is standing between the "intruder" and the rest of the herd. To where in "pack" animals, it is a natural instinct to "attack" on "intruders". Also, "herd" animals are not affected by loud noises, where "pack" animals tend to be provoked by them because of the high prey drive. If you have 3 pigs, that are not pets, and used for breeding, they are their own herd and they are going to do what herd animals do, which is look out for "their herd". Breeding animal groups are very different than pet animal groups. But as long as you are not breeding & any male pigs you have, have been neutered, you have absolutley nothing to worry about.
"We have allergies and have been told that a pig will not affect them...is that true?"
YES! Pig are Hypoallergenic and make the perfect pet for people with allergies!
"What all do I need for a pig when I bring him home?"
Alot of this will depend on the age of pig that you are getting. A younger pig will need a few more things then an older one. But here are the basics: (*) indicates for younger pigs only.
Crate (large enough for litter box, bed, blankets, & bowls)
Litter Box (with a "u" cut in the enterance for easy access)
All Natural Pine Pelleted litter (no clumping or added scents & nothing cedar)
Bed (something soft that they can "burrow" into)
*Heat Source (lamp or pad)
Baby Oil or Olive Oil (olive oil cooking spray works well)
Stiff Brisseled Brush
Body Gloves or Shower Puff
Lots of Toys
Untippable Bowls (crock style work great)
"How often do I bathe my Pig?"
As often as you like! They are very clean and do not harbor a natural odor, but the more often you bathe them, the faster it will become just part of life for them and when they do actually need a bath, it wont be the least bit difficult. However, this too need to begin early on & continued because once it has been interrupted, it will be difficult to began again.
"Are pigs affectionate?"
Yes, very! They are a very loving animal. They love to petted & held and talked too. They would rather be with their family than anything and they make excellent sleeping companions for little ones!