Pets can be as diverse as the world we live in! Unique Pet number four is the Vietnamese Pot-Bellied Pig, which is fairly popular as an exotic pet! An acquaintance of mine from elementary school had one of these! They are generally good-natured animals and can make great pets!

Visit the Natural Bridge Zoo!About These Pigs
Many of you may be under the impression that these animals stay cute and small like they are when they are young, but these pigs grow to an average of 60 to 150 lbs, and have even gotten up to 200 lbs! Full grown, they will be about 3 feet long, and about 15 inches tall! They were introduced into the United States from Canada in the 1980’s and became popular immediately with breeders springing up suddenly all over the country!

Visit the Traveling Petting Zoo!So You Want A Pet Pig?
Your pet pig can be kept indoors or outdoors. They are generally very clean animals and if kept indoors, can and should be trained with a “litter box”, made of a large plastic cement-mixing tub, lined with newspapers and filled with pine chips. They do like to root around outside and in carpets, so be aware of the effect this can have on your carpets or a well-manicured lawn. They do not like to be picked up and held, since by nature they are prey, and this can make them nervous. If not neutered or spayed, they can be more aggressive. Life expectancy is 12 to 15 years, so make sure you are ready to commit to caring for your pet for the rest of its life!

Visit Tranquility Acres!Feeding
There seems to be some disagreement about the best way to go about this. One source suggested commercially prepared pot-bellied pig food. Another suggested a specialized diet as worked out by your local veterinarian. And a third source feeds his own pig a combination of table scraps and cracked corn. All seem to be in agreement that you should consult your vet about the best type of food and portion sizes for your specific animal, as this can vary greatly depending on age and size!

Visit Hilo Zoo in Hawaii!Rooting
Pot-bellied Pigs will root around quite a bit, and you can help save your yard and/or carpet by providing a rooting box specifically for your pig to root in, and training it to limit its rooting activities, to your special box! You can construct such a place by building a sand box or filling a small child’s pool with sand, and then adding rock and/or toys large enough that your pig can’t swallow them!

Visit the Los Angeles Zoo!Temperature
Pot-bellied Pigs are sensitive to extreme heat and extreme cold. If your pet will be living outside in your yard, make sure to provide warm, dry shelter (such as a dog house) with plenty of blankets inside, for your pig to keep warm in on colder days. For the summer months, make sure there is plenty of shade for your pig, as well as some cool water for it to jump into, such as a kiddie pool. Also, be aware that your pig is very susceptible to sun-burn and if it will be exposed to much sun, you should apply sunscreen, like you would on yourself or your children. If it is too hot or too cold, you will need to bring your pet into a more temperature controlled area, such as a garage, if you absolutely can’t have it inside.

Visit Farnless Farm Park!Other Important Stuff!
Make sure to have your pig vaccinated once a year, and de-wormed two or three times a year. Spay or neuter your pig at 8 to 10 weeks, and have the pig’s hooves trimmed at least once a year. When your pig exhibits unacceptable behavior, firmly stamp your foot down and give a strong “no”. Spoiled pigs can really get out of hand, so make sure you discipline your pet from the very beginning. Pigs can also be taught many of the same commands and tricks as dogs, such as fetch, sit, stay.

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