Articles

  1. How Dangerous Are Pigs?

    There's no doubt that feral pigs pose a danger to humans, but how about your average, domesticated pig? You won't find many articles on domestic pigs that went on rampages, but there has been a recent case where a wild 600 pound pig injured a woman while feeding livestock on her property in England. A pig is just like any other animal, and will lash out if feeling cornered or mistreated. In general, domestic pigs are not dangerous, but they can bite, since they are natural foragers. And...
  2. Cutting Needle Teeth

    Piglets are born with a set of eight surprisingly sharp teeth. So sharp are these teeth that they are referred to as 'needle teeth.' After birth, these teeth are often clipped due to the hazards they prevent if left intact. The procedure of clipping needle teeth is quick but does require care to get the optimum benefits from doing so. The most important reason to clip needle teeth is because of the level and degree of sharpness they bring to the table...the table being the teats in this...
  3. Heat Cycles: At What Age, How Long, and How Often

    In order to breed your pigs, it is essential to choose the opportune time. There are several elements to this, all of which must coincide for a successful breeding to take place. If just one part of the plan were to go awry, the opportunity to breed could be missed, resulting in a delay in pregnancy and farrowing for several weeks if not longer. The first step in breeding a sow or gilt is for her to be sexually mature. Gilts typically reach puberty at around five months of age and at that...
  4. Pig Not Eating?

    Pigs are hefty eaters by nature, so when they stop eating suddenly, this is cause for concern. There are a variety of reasons why a pig has stopped eating, and the matter should be addressed immediately, since it could be symptomatic of a larger problem. The root of the problem could range from mild to deadly serious. Constipation This is a common problem in older pigs, and you\'ll have to examine their bathroom habits. If you notice the pig is straining to go, or if the little fecal...
  5. Teeth: The Tool for Aging Pigs

    At what age to prefer to purchase pigs? Whether you prefer young piglets or animals near to butchering age, it is key to know the age of the animals you buy. In most cases, a reputable seller will provide you with accurate information, but should a seller be dishonest or have poor record keeping skills, you will need to be able to determine age on your own. Photo: Storm Front If your plans, and budget, include bringing home a pig that is ready to be fattened for butchering purposes, it...
  6. Save Money on Pig Feed By Sourcing Local Food Scraps

    Feeding pigs can be an expensive endeavor depending on the amount of property you have at your disposal. If you have a farm situated on a large piece of acreage with pasture potential, turning pigs out on that pasture can aid you in greatly reducing feeding costs. However, in this day and age, more people are turning to pigs as a means to raise their own food, and they are using smaller parcels of land to do so. Keeping pigs on minimal property is very easy to do, although it can be...
  7. Ear Notching for Identification

    Being able to identify animals that look the same or similar can be a difficult task to say the least. A good example of animals tough to tell apart from one another are piglets. Further complicating matters is the movement of those animals to and fro, movement that can be so quick that you don't even realize Piglet A and Piglet B have swapped places right under your nose. Depending on the breed, they may have markings that will help you tell one piglet from the next, but that is not always...
  8. A Pig's Eye View

    If you watch a pig for a long enough amount of time, you will notice certain behaviors that are common amongst the species. This could be ways in which they conduct themselves, such as types of movement or the way they appear to look at things. You may notice a certain cock of the head or a point at which a pig moves away from an implied threat. It could even be that you see your pigs try to fit into holes and spaces that are too tight for them. These behaviors and more are because of the...
  9. Duroc Pigs

    The Duroc pig can look intimidating on the surface, but never judge a book by its cover. However, this is definitely not a house pig to have around the house. Even though these pigs are considered a popular commercial breed by meat producers, they still make great show pigs. And, since this pig is one of the gentlest pigs out there, it is an excellent choice if you want to breed stout, muscular pigs. Historically, this pig has been a top choice for breeders and hog farmers. And it is a...
  10. American Landrace

    Photo from Bib In previous articles, I highlighted some rare pig breeds, but the American Landrace is one of the more common breeds you\'ll find in the United States. It is a breed commonly used for bacon production, but they produce a fair share of milk for their litters, and they can reproduce efficiently. Studies have shown that the height of their milk production begins at around 5 weeks of lactation. History of the Breed It comes from Danish Landrace, going all the way back to...
  11. Problems with Pig Skin

    Paying attention to the health of pigs' skin is another important aspect of pig care. In order to nip problems in the bud, keeping an eye on the condition of your pigs' skin is essential. Since pigs can acquire lice, ticks, mange mites, and other skin conditions it is key to be able to recognize and know how to treat these issues not only for the health of your pigs but also for your own health as mange can be spread from pigs to their human caretakers. Mange in pigs is caused by mite...
  12. A Pig in Curls: The Mangalitsa

    Pigs come in many shapes, sizes, and colors. From teeny tiny teacup pigs to massive monster pigs, to say there is variation amongst the species is to hit the nail on the head. Pigs come in different colors as well, and some of them even sport different hair styles, at least as where the Mangalitsa is concerned. Photo: Note Passer At first glance, a Mangalista may look like a standard pig from afar, but when you take a closer look, something unsual will reveal itself, that being a curly...
  13. Selecting Breeding Stock

    The backbone of any successful breeding operation is the animals used in it. This means having and using well-bred stock that is correct in conformation and other desirable traits. While conformation is important in order for a gilt or sow to be physically able to handle pregnancy, good conformation is also an important trait that is passed down to offspring, some of which may become future breeders which will in turn pass breeding down to newer generations as well. When it comes to...
  14. Pig Profile: Babirusa

    Feral pigs have been in the news as of late because of their growing presence around the country. But have you ever wondered about other feral pigs around the world? Babirusas are not considered nuisance pigs, and they are now a protected species. I've always been fascinated by this pig since I did research on them over seven years ago. They are especially interesting because of their tusk curvature and sharp, lower teeth. These pigs are native to the Togian islands of Indonesia: Sula,...
  15. Ancient Egyptian Pigs

    Have you ever thought of the pig as a symbol of good luck? The ancient Egyptians once thought so, and their body parts were thought to have healed major ailments. In my previous article about pigs in Egypt, I highlighted the plight of Coptic Christians who use pigs to clean up Egypt's mounting garbage. But let's rewind all the way back to ancient Egypt. Hog Worship The pig has always held a prominent role in Egyptian history before Christians and Arabs came to coexist in this ancient...
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