Although many think of pigs as food rather than friends, keeping a micro pig domestically instead of the more usual choice of a cat or dog is becoming increasingly fashionable. But don’t be fooled by their sweet appearance – without lots of socialisation and a strong human leader to train them, these half-pint hogs can develop dominance and aggression issues. So read below to find out more about the micro-pig!
Also known as Teacup Pigs or Miniature Pigs, micro pigs are the creation of breeder Chris Murray, who dedicated 9 years of effort and 24 generations of pigs to finally achieve the tiny creature we know and love today! These pocket-sized porkers have taken the UK by storm, becoming the must have accessory for celebrities like Paris Hilton – who decided to buy a micro pig in 2009. But these little pigs are not accessories- they are living, feeling creatures and should be treated with the love and respect they deserve. Our throwaway society, in combination with a lack of regulation around the breeding of these little beasts, means that over 300,000 pigs were surrendered to animal sanctuaries by their owners in 2009. Pigs that cannot be rehomed are often put to sleep
Despite their initial very small size at just 9oz, micro pigs often grow to 12 – 16 inches and up to 65lb; that’s the size of a medium dog! Your home needs to be suitable for an animal of this size, especially as they require lots of daily exercise and mental stimulation. It’s also worth noting that, even though a breeder may advertise ‘micro pigs for sale’ that there is no 100% guarantee that they will remain a manageable size. Many owners surrendering pigs to animal shelters do so because the animals has unexpectedly grown to the size of a ‘normal’ pig. Although you can never be certain what size your pig will end up, you can get a good idea by looking at the parents and grandparents when viewing a farrow (litter) of micro pigs. All good breeders should allow you to see the relatives and show you their paperwork – which you should check to ensure the parents themselves are also at their fully-grown size. Like any pet, you should make sure your tiny swine is microchipped – so he or she can be traced back to you if they go missing.
Micro pigs are intelligent and affectionate creatures who would make anideal family pet in the right environment. Generally, they are clean and cannot catch fleas due to their lack of fur, making them suitable for people with allergies. These little piggies enjoy going for daily walks on a leash and having a garden to root around in. They also like plenty of affection and adore being petted so shouldn’t be left for long periods of time as they will get lonely! Micro Pigs can be house trained and live in the home, but it is worth investing in preparing a sheltered outdoor space to accommodate the pig as well. Micro Pigs enjoy a varied diet, including vegetables, scraps, pellets and fruits.
With daily interaction and training these sweet piglets can be taught to do tricks, play with toys and use a litterbox. But think about the future before you start looking for a micro pig – with a lifespan of 15-20 years, they’re a friend for life!
Need some supplies for your family pet? Check out our wide variety of pet accessories on offer at a bargain price!