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Miniature Pet Pigs Are Still Pigs
Published: July 27, 2015

Miniature pigs have become popular as pets and although their size makes them appropriate as pets, Drs. Amy Woods and Valerie Tynes indicate in Diseases of Swine that people wanting miniature pigs as pets need to realize they are still pigs. One concern about these miniature pigs is their behavior, as some tend to become aggressive to humans and it is important not to ignore this problem. This aggression typically begins as the pig matures and the pig must be taught that humans are the leaders of the group. To accomplish this, it is important for these pigs to wear a harness made specifically for miniature pigs, and they should be taught to respond to a command such as sit before getting a treat.

Just like larger pigs, these miniature pigs do not do well with restraint. You can hold them in your arms to examine them and examine them as they are being fed. Otherwise, most procedures performed on miniature pigs will go much smoother for the vet, owner, and pig with sedation. Most pigs do very well with sedation and it is really helpful for routine procedures like hoof trimming and trimming of the canine teeth.

Obesity is a common problem in miniature pigs due to lack of exercise and improper feeding. Obesity contributes to chronic lameness and even blindness secondary to excessive fat accumulation around the eyes. These pigs need to be fed a commercial diet for pigs with no human food, and the food can be placed in food-dispensing toys to make the pigs expend more calories to get their food.

Also, before getting a miniature pig, make sure it is legal to have them in your community. Realize they are considered farm animals by the government. Consequently, the medications used are restricted as they are for commercial pigs on the farm.

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