HOUSING

 

The most important point to remember when deciding on the type of housing to use is that pigs cannot sweat, so they must be provided with conditions that allow them to stay cool, especially during the hot summer months. This can be done by providing them with a shallow pool of clean water or mud area in which to wallow and some form of cover to provide shade from the sun. Pigs in hot sun can suffer very badly from sunstroke, and both black and white skinned pigs can develop very bad sunburn. Some owners like their pets to wallow in mud, which when dried on the skin can provide some protection from the sun.

 

Take special care before putting pigs outdoors to make sure that there is a very strong wire fence around all the area in which the pig is going to exercise or else you will have serious disputes with your neighbours after their garden has been rooted up. Pigs are capable of rooting up many fences not placed into the ground and then escape from an apparently secure enclosure.

 

The best type of pen is one that is divided into two parts by a thick piece of wood bolted to the floor. This will keep the straw bedding in place at one end and a non-bedded toilet and exercise area at the other end. This arrangement also provides a rough concrete or gravel surface to keep the feet in trim, which also helps to prevent the toes from overgrowing.

 

If your pet is to be housed indoors then do not expect it to sleep on a cold bare floor-this must be covered with clean dry straw or a rug to provide comfort both for legs and joints and insulation against the cold.

 

One very important point to remember when housing your pet pig indoors is that, because of its very inquisitive nature, electrical cables to television sets and table lamps will very soon be chewed through. So always keep electric cables out of reach and hidden behind wooden or plastic trunking. Young piglets are very playful and will readily accept toys to play with. Make sure these are very strong and are not easily broken into small pieces that can be swallowed and cause stomach problems.

 

 

Surprisingly pigs are actually more sensitive to overheating than being cold. As pigs cannot sweat, they must be provided with a wallow preferably mud so they can loose heat by evaporation. The mud will act as a sunscreen, protecting them from sunburn.

 

Within many countries, the EU for example, there are legal minimum requirements for housing which must be adhered to at all time.

 

Top