A pig inside the home? Such an idea could be revolting for many people, but there are quite a few people who appreciate the personality and intelligence of pigs, and would not mind having one at home as a pet. Pigs can make outstanding pets provided you have the right expectations and you know how to train and take care of them.
Some people who have tried to keep pigs as pets have found that they are quite demanding animals and their requirements became overwhelming. However, pigs also have many positive qualities, as well. Pigs are quite endearing animals, since they are intelligent, playful, curious, loving, and can be easily trained. Contrary to popular opinion, pigs are odor free, quiet, and mostly non-allergenic. Hence, you need to worry about the cleanliness of your home, as much as when you have a large pet dog.
Pigs are No Fools
Pigs are not stupid as many people think, but in fact they are quite intelligent. Due to their intelligence they can be trained as easily as a dog, which would include leash trained, house trained and even teaching some tricks. Nevertheless, their intelligence can become a negative trait when they become overly curious and head strong. They need adequate amount of stimulation, as they tend to become bored quite fast, and when they get bored, they usually become destructive.
Pigs are voracious eaters and coupled with their intelligence they will soon learn to open cupboards, fridges, or any other door, where they know food is stored. Their demands for food can become quite overwhelming for some people. They will beg for food, and can demonstrate aggressive behavior with people having food, especially children.
One of the dominant characteristics of pigs is exploring and digging around with their snouts. This is a natural instinct, but that can make your home and landscaping messy. A pig will usually overturn things in the house, especially garbage cans, and will dig around in your backyard. You will have to build an enclosure with soft dirt in your backyard, if you want the rest of your yard to be left alone.
Just like dogs, pigs also have a territorial instinct and can become aggressive if they are not trained well. You should teach your pet pig that all humans in the household should be respected, set certain rules, and teach the pig to keep to certain boundaries. Training pigs is relatively easy, but remember, they do not respond well to physical punishment.
Part of the Family
A pig should be trained with positive reinforcement, such as giving treats or using a praising tone when the pig has done something desirable. From the very first day you get a pig, you should put down rules and enforce them consistently. Consistent patient training with positive reinforcements will make your pig quite well mannered, and you will soon consider your pig a member of the family.
A Healthy Fat Animal
The ideal choice for a pet would be miniature potbellied pig, however, the term miniature is relative, and they can weigh as much as 125 pounds or more when they are fully grown.