Monday, December 4, 2017

A Pig for Christmas

     I decided to give you a little break from my soap box blog about the trials of owning a pig to tell you a funny story, share a poem I wrote, and offer a plush Christmas pig for sale to anyone who would like her.
     The story goes like this, the other day during his afternoon walk, Fred in all of his 300+ glory was making himself a large hole nest under the pine tree by our neighbors fence. I went over to Fred and said "Oh Fred do you realy have to do that?" He just looked at me and grunted while I was by the fence I said hello to our neighbor. The people who were visiting her came over to admire Fred. Whom to his credit was a perfect gentleman in this first encounter with anyone other then the mailman he even let them pet him through the fence (proud grandma here!) Anyway to make a long story short they asked me if pigs make good pets. As you all well know that is a loaded question. Mean while Fred had gone back to his hole rolling back and forth making himself all dirty and having a grand time.

Fred's masterpiece.

    I tell them "Pigs are very smart but they are also very stubborn animals who can be just as ornery as they are loveable plus as you can see Fred here who was supposed to be 75 to 100 pounds is now over 300 and most of the time dose what he wants when he wants to." Then they say the infamous line "Well I have always wanted a pig but I live in an apartment." I chuffed and said "Please do not get a pig it is not the right pet for an apartment." Just then my daughter who is Fred's mama comes over she scolded him saying "Fed what are you doing?" He quickly tried to get up but triped on his stupid mule hoves and rolled out of the hole in the funniest move I have ever seen after two tumbles, He landed on his butt and looked up at her and said "Mama" as if to say "What I wasn't doing anything."  Completely affirming my previous statement "Pigs are very smart very stubborn animals who can be just as ornery as they are loveable."

     It is ironic I want to tell people that pigs are not good pets, but I love Fred very much and I could not imagine not having him around.  So after telling people not to get a pig I always seem to brag about how smart he is. I guess it is just a personal preference like dog versus cat people not that this really aplies to us as we have both To each their own I guess as long as the animals remaine safe.

     Anyway moving along it is the holidays after all and I am sure you all are very busy people. Here is a poem inspired by the many stories from my pig groups and the antics of Fred.

A Pig for Christmas 
The chestnuts are falling from the tree
Two for the squirrel, three for the pig, and one for me.
The leaves are changing from green to brown
I need more pig chow from town.
There is a pig in my bed
He's not listening to what I said!
He told me it is too cold outside
Under the covers he plans to reside.
 I must be crazy
Even I'm not that lazy.
Do I have a farm yard in my house
Did I just see a mouse?
I guess this is how it is going to be
It is almost time to put up the tree.
I hope he doesn't knock it down
That would surely make me frown.
Oh please don't roll in the soot 
Ouch, now you've stepped on my foot
Oh no he gave me that sideways look
And that is all it took.
Now I have shared my Christmas treat
Because his grin can't be beat.
I will always love my tub of lard
Even when he roots up my yard!
There is no way I can stay mad
He just makes me glad.

                                                             By Sally Wolf 2017

I leave you with the offering of the 12in Christmas Persilla pig she is in very good condition with original story tag and bib. If anyone is interested she is $15 dollars shipped.

Sold Thanks Donna if anyone collects plush pigs and would like me to look for you just let me know. The topical price is 15$ shipped.

Leave a comment, message me on Facebook or email me at if interested. All proceedes will be used to help with Fred's care. First come first served. Thank you once again for taking the time to stop by I hope you have enjoyed your stay tuned in next time for more pig related fun.

From my family to yours. 
May God's blessings be bestowed upon you and yours this holiday season.


Thursday, October 19, 2017

Pig on Board Can You Handle It?

       First of all I want to start off by saying thank you to everyone who has read or commented on my last post. One thing I have found out recently is that all serious pig owners are very passionate people. If they were not full of life, they would be unable to handle the challenges of having  such an interesting animal as a pet. Let me once again reiterate, this blog is about our families experience of owning  and caring for a pet pig. Every experience will not be the same and I want you to know that up front.  Some pigs may stay smallish while others will get bigger. Some are aggressive while others are sweat and gentle. I am just trying to worn you that  pigs are a handful and are not for the the busy or the faint of heart.
Now with the disclaimer out of the way, on to step two, despite knowing better you decide to acquired a pig. ( Hopefully a rescue, not from unscrupulous breeder like us.) Since you have this strange creature in your house, what are you supposed to do with it?

     Pigs are herd animals they pick one leader and follow that leader. Before anything else happens you must establish this position over your pig or they will literally walk all over you. Now this does't mean get out the rod and start beating the poor thing with it.  There are five, classes in a pigs world, mother, litter mate, friends just because you give it food,  stranger danger freeze so they don't see me, and oh my God save me run around in a circle then charge. A mother will be able to do almost anything to the pig, kiss hug, give baths, clean feet, trim hooves, sit next to, lay on, and tell them what to do. Litter mates are for playing with, pissing on, rubbing up against,  and only listened to if there is a treat involved. Friends are individuals who are not in the main family unit  these individuals will not be listened to and they might even get a nip unless they have something tasty or are fun to play with. Strangers and loud noises may cause your pig to freeze and assess the situation if the pig determines it is a friend you will be greeted with a grunt and a rub if you are unrecognized then watch out because a scream, a spin or a fast paced charge with their mouth open may be coming your way.
      The next thing you must know is that pigs are messy hence their name sake. If you live in a home with white carpets, frilly curtains,  expensive breakables perched on the edges of tables, or at work for long hours, do not get a pig.  Not to say pigs are dirty they actually like to be clean. It is just that they must roll in the mud as a sunscreen, they dig in the dirt looking for roots, they can go to the bathroom by the bucket full, and most importantly they get board or offended  easily.
      Here are a few things we found out the hard way. Pigs are very obstinate if you tell them to sit they will most definitely spin.  If you find this cute and reward this behavior your pig will learn they can do whatever they want and still get a treat. Therefore It will then do the opposite of what you want every time and before long it will become unruly. You must only give it treats when it does exactly what you want. Unlike a dog pigs do not learn by being yelled at they, they do not care if you think their behavior is bad if is what they want to do they will do it. You must train them by having the power over the rewards you give out. Fed can sit, spin both directions, wave, march, stay, shake, go outside to the bathroom, bow, take a knee, step up, lay down, crawl, and roll onto his side. We accomplished this by rewarding him for these actions he did normally giving them a name each time a and giving him a reward. Now if we say the word he will do the action until a treat is given. Sometimes he will do his favorite trick without you asking if you happen to be near him with food. This cute trick behavior is probably one of the reasons he is 300 pounds it is very hard to resist someone smiling at you waving his hoof in the air frantically.

      First trick we taught him was to get him to stop using the carpet as a rest room. We did this by acquiring different sizes containers and placed them around the room which we filled with shredded newspapers and then for the next month there was a constant chores of six people saying "Use your box Freddie" followed by "Good pee." "Good poo" Or "Bad pee Bad poo." if he was just too lazy to take that one extra step to get into the box. We purchased a carpet cleaner but soon found out that due to the amount of cleaning required the moisture was causing the carpet to be so damp it was starting to mold. We did a little research into dry cleaning and found the best method for pee clean up was to sprinkle the spot with a mixture of baking soda, boric acid, and cornstarch.  This solution in essence wicks the pee out of the carpet and then you can just vacuum it away, repeating the process until it was all gone. When he became too huge to feasibly use a container we switched to taking him outside. This was a feat was an undertaking unto itself. We have a fenced in yard from but a crazy neighbor so letting him just roam was not an option. Any pig owner will tell you that putting on a harness is a ear piercing experience most pigs do not like to be captured or restrained so they will run away from you and scream if caught. Once again we trained him to use a harness by big rewards and a lot of positive reinforcement. To this day he still cries about putting it on but does not run away... most of the time. We did this every two hours for about a week. He finally got the idea and now asks to go outside somewhere between two and three times a day.

     With the bathroom chores out of the way the next hurdle we faced was to teach him not to rush and buck at people who were trying to feed him. This was a bit harder as there was more steps involved first we had to teach him to sit. This was done by first naming and rewarding when he did sat naturally after a while he started to do it on cue. Next we taught him to stay, by making him sit then placing the dish in front of him and said stay or wait if he advanced we took it away. We repeated this until he understood that unless he sat until the food was on the ground and the okay command was given the food was removed. He did not like not being fed so he learned quickly and now you just have to stand there with the food dish he will sit and wait until you say okay before he starts to eat. Sometimes he sits to close and we have too say back up back up sit. He will grudgingly stand up spin around and then back up until he is sitting farther away.

      Let's talk about the importance of neutering, we got Fred thinking our dog vet would take care of him, they are a vet after all but not all vets are created equal. We then had the long task of finding one that took pigs. We found one that was an hour away from our home, they said we had to wait until he was at least 10 pounds before we could bring him in. During this time it was nearly one hundred degrees and our car had no AC we were concerned for his well being. When he was big enough our car stopped working all together and we had to raise the money to buy another. While we waited Fed took this time to spread the most smelly substance everywhere, on chairs, carpets, and people. We stemmed this behavior by tying a blanket on him when he went outside then getting the biggest bouncy ball from Walmart.
      When he got so big that he popped them we purchased a stronger one from ebay. We called them his girlfriend and he would do his business on them making him less likely to do it on us and his belongings.

Large Cando R Ball 13-17-1-2-diameter

      When we finally got a new car the original vet said he was too big and we had to find another. We luckily found one that was only about fifteen minutes from us. I spent the wait time teaching him to step up onto a stool. When the time came we bribed Fred to step up into the car where he promptly peed all over my daughter's shoes, luckily we had put down a strip of vinyl so it did not get it on the carpet. The first visit was just a look see and a weigh to our surprise he weighed 201 pounds. The vet said they had to check to make sure that the gas was safe for his weight. She called back and the neutering was scheduled. It was a little harder to get him into the car the second time because we could not bribe him with food but he did it for ice. The wait for him to come around was probably the longest we have ever experienced. Finally we, got the call that he was awake and were able to go and pick him up. The sound he made when he saw us broke my heart. He tucked his head under my kneecaps and told me the whole story. We loaded him into the car and took him home. He was very angry with us because the vet said no mud in till his incisions were healed. Basically, they sliced  each one of his balls down the middle and removed the sack, then they left the courts open to heal from the inside out. He looked like he got in a fight with Wolverine. For two weeks we had to herd him away from all mud puddles.

One day the Vet called to check up on him and left a message on the machine. When Fred heard her voice he screamed and hid under his blanket. All in all though it was a traumatic experience for Fred and our nerves, it was for the better. He no longer shares his essence with everyone and he no longer needs to wear a blanket to get out of the house or the use a ball for pleasuring himself.

      Well, I can only ignore Fred for so long, so this will conclude this entry of my blog for this time tune in next time for tips on general maintenance like feeding, hoof care and trimming, skin care and boredom relief.
   In short pigs do make good  pets  So if you want a pig please follow these guidelines.
1: Make sure there is a vet in your area that takes pigs and the zoning laws allow pigs.
2: Insure you have the space and household to accommodate a large animal with no knowledge of their girth or strength plus pigs do not do stairs.
3: A pig is a herd animal and do not like to be left alone if you are away from home a lot then a pig is not for you.

4:  Find a big group on Facebook in order to listen to others experience and read these informative websites.
Best pig harness


Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Beware Before you try! MINI Teacup Pigs do not Exist!

      You want to own a pig? Well look at this beauty I acquired from Fed in the last week.
Headbutt with mouth open!
Despite my recent injury, I wouldn't change Fred for anything he is a member of our family, that said pig are not for everyone.

      Are you still interested? Well hang on it is going to be a bumpy ride. The first step to becoming a crazy pig owner is to acquire one, but there are several important things you must first understand. Please take this advice to heart if not for your sanity then consider the health of the pig. The most important thing you need to research is your local zoning laws. We live in the county so it is not a factor but I am a member of several pig related groups on Facebook and there are plenty of posts by people looking to relocate their new family member because the law considers them farm animals not pets so they are not allowed inside the city limits. Which brings me to my next point vet care most vets will not take care of a pigs for the same reason listed above and you have to find one that specializes in large animals. Make sure there is one close to you because, despite what some bum on the side of the road tells you, pigs do need vet care, for one thing they need to be spade and or neutered as soon as they are big enough. Plus unless you have ears of steel and a very docile pig hoof trimming is not a option for the casual owner. Next thing I would highly recommend is go to a pig sanctuary in your area before even thinking about getting a pig. You may find pictures of piglets cute and adorable but trust me when I say pictures do not portray the size, power or,  attitude of an adult pig. I can not stress it enough that you must go and find out if this massive bundle of attention grubbing, rooting, wall eating, gate busting, starving, worse attitude then any brooding teenager, bulk of loveable fat is right for you. Know this fact right now before you read another word about the care of a pig, Mini pigs do not exist! If cared for properly they will grow bigger then most people can handle. For this reason alone owing a pig is not a good idea unless you have the space time and patience.

When we first got Fed he was less then 30 lbs and fit in the smallest carrier sold at Walmart.

First day home.
Latest photo!
He is now 301 lbs!

 Please concider zoning, vet care, size, attitude, time, space, entertainment, food, and other pets before getting a pig. A pig it is very hard to relocate after the fact and it is very stressful on the animal. I will leave you with these thoughts if you are still brave enough to continue tune in next time when I will talk about general care, discipline, training, and the differences between pigs and other domestic pets.

Despite my recent injury, I wouldn't change Fred for anything he is a member of our family and we are working very hard to make him happy.

FUN here are twelve signs someone crazy pig owner:

1. Acquire a pig even after watching Ester's documentary.
2. Keep it even after realizing it is nearly impossible to contain.
3. The fridridge now houses more vegetables than meat.
4. Make a mad dash to the local Tractor Supply once a month having to hold your breath until  they reaach the pig food aisle praying the mini pig brand is in stock.
5. Remodel home, lifestyle, and yard to keep the pig happy.
6. Insist on driving a half an hour away just to find a vet who will treat it like a pet not a farm animal.
7. Tell family and friends not to come around at first because they are unsure how it will interact with strangers.
8. Get up at eight in the morning to walk the pig, when they just told the dog it was too early.
9. All social media is now full of pig photos.
10. The yard now looks like it was hit by a meteor shower. 
11. Tell everyone that looks at you funny, when they find out about the pet pig that it is a wonderful pet despite just having cleaned up a huge mess.
12: Own at least two or more nonessential, pig related items like art, clothing, nicknacks, plush, or kitchen decor.

Thursday, November 24, 2016

He's a she! She's a he! He's a she-she

     The first thing you learn when you bring your new pig home is that despite doing the research which is a must because after the fact is too late,  you instantly find out you know nothing about owning one. For starters each pig has their own personality and what what works great for one pig will send the next into a fit. I can only describe our situation to you and hope it helps you deal with the ups and downs of pig care. Please keep in mind this is by no means a guide book or the law regarding pig keeping mainly because what works for us may not work for you.
When we brought our pig home we were so excited and the family gathered to watch this silly thing lumber around my room and the first of many lies told to us by the breeder was soon discovered.

    He said "They get along with dogs." We have a female Bassett who had recently had a false pregnancy and was dripping milk so we foolishly thought they would bond and the pig would become a surrogate pup but neither would have anything to do with other.  One of our dogs went crazy and would not stop whining and another just stood there barking at it while all of our other dogs were afraid of it. We had reached a dilemma in our pig keeping saga, what do we do with six dogs and a pig who did not get along with each other? We insanity went  to Google to do some more research and what did we find? Horrible stories and photos of missing snouts and horrific tales of predators versus pray.  Now we either had to give up and get rid of the pig for his safety or in act protocols to insure his safety. Once again as I mentioned before we never take the easy way out. Many baby gates were purchased,  then rotation and knocking laws were established. This worked and the pig remained.

       The next lie was a little bit more dramatic as we all debated over what to call our new girl pig we all agreed it was not okay to name it something meat related so we decided on Violet after a female pig in my detective pig series.  This was voted on and passed by the whole family I even posted it as my Facebook status. Each day we sent the dogs out of the room and shut the door then we let "her" out to eat and play. We set her up with a small Tupperware container with shredded newspapers. Which it promptly ignored and went on the carpet.

Baking soda dry cleaning

     My husband said "Where did that piss come from?" We all looked at him and shook our heads unsure exactly. Off to Google we went to find out how to get this animal who was supposed to be able to be litter box trained to go in the box. After a few more minutes we saw the signs it was about to pee and we all  hurried to placed it in the litter box. Then we all watched intensely as steady stream of pee came out of his bellybutton. We scratched it at the base of the tail until it fell over onto it's side sure enough we did not have a girl pig we had a boy. My daughter instantly burst into tears afraid we would get rid of it because it was now a boy. My husband went to the almighty Google again and found as long as, they are neutered it is okay to keep a male. We decided that he was now part of our family and we were going to keep him no matter what. The name even came easy as he was also named after another pig in my detective stories he was christened Sir Frederick Von Pickles Violet's brother. We did however promptly call the breeder and asked for our fifty dollars back when we went to retrieve it he said "My girl said I am about as useless as tits on a boar". Freddie grew fast and soon out grew his carrier and harness. Another set was acquired and then another.
Sorry to write and dash but it is pig chow time and I can hear him starting to stir. Tune in next time to hear about our food, potty and pen issues.

Posted via Blogaway

Thursday, November 17, 2016

So you wanted a pet pig careful what you wish for.

     What is the best coarse of action to take when your neighbor is harassing you about your field lines on his property and changes his fence so your six dogs now have an increased chance of getting electrocuted? The most logical solution is to move right?
 Wrong, it is to stop at a road side stand and buy a potbelly pig.  Why would we do this you might ask? The simple answer is because that is what we do. Our family finds the path of most resistance and follows it blindly just for the sure challenge of it hence the six dogs mentioned before all of whom are rescues except for two. You have to understand my husband has the biggest heart on the planet and when everyone is suffering he goes to great lengths to try and make it better even to the detriment of himself.
       This all began when my middle daughter was little, she had trouble learning to read due to dyslexia.  So my husband who was trying to motivate her to learn teased her that if she researched potbelly pigs we would discuss getting her one when she was fifteen. Little did he know that is exactly what would happen nine years later. She is obsessed with pigs and has been since she saw them at the zoo. Therefor after this discussion she instantly could read despite struggling before. She made sure she read every book she could get her hands on and collected anything that was pig related just for good measure.
     At the time this promise was made we lived in the city and there was no way we would ever own a pig it was one of those things you say off the cuff to be funny. Then tragedy struck in May of  2010 it rained for three days solid and then the city let out the dam. The results were the water table was so high it seeped into our home causing it to be so moldy the carpet looked like the surface of the moon, on top of that the walls caved in and everything fabric was ruined. We were unable to refurbish our home ourselves and received no assistance because our house was not submerged in water so we did the next best thing we moved in with my mother-in-law. We crammed our six people, three dogs, and a cat into a two bedroom condo which was all ready occupied by a little old lady and her two cats. My husband instantly went stir crazy and started looking for a new place to live. He worked really hard and found our current home the next trick was to raise enough money to afford it. Which we did with a little help from my grandmother and a bunch of tenacity on the part of my husband. We thought we found the perfect place for us it was rural enough that we felt free of the city but inland enough to have amenities like highish speed internet. It came with enough bedrooms for everyone and a full basement for our passions of fish keeping and video games. Everything was okay until my mother-in-law demanded we move as soon as we signed the paperwork leaving us no time to fix up the place before we had everyone here. Once again though we took it on because that is what we do. Anyway to make a long story short here we are nearly seven years later no closer to being moved in. It is not like we have been sitting on our hands though we put up shelves and built a room in the basement all the while homeschooling our children and making a living. Then my husband became disabled, I got sick with ITP and had to have chemotherapy, our daughter had a cyst which required surgery and recovery. On top of that we lost a dog and a cat over the rainbow bridge. Somewhere in there we gained four dogs and a cat all of whom we rescued. Which brings us to the present and the the above mentioned potbelly pig.
    So our crazy 80 year old neighbor demanded we move our septic field line off his property. He even came on our property while packing to threaten us to do it immediately. All of the stress was putting a strain on our family unit no one was happy and other then walking the dogs we spent the next few months locked in our house. One day when we went to Wal-Mart there was a sign on the side of the road surrounded by dog crates that read Mini-mico pigs for sale. Most people would just drive on by but not us we pulled into the parking lot and asked them how much the girls were $150 and the boys were $100 cash. Our first thoughts were we should get a girl as we didn't want a bully male. With great effort we acquired the $150, a pink harness, a carrier, some nurse all milk, crackers and a small plastic tub to use as a litter box.
Of course this was not without asking the important questions.

Us: "We want a girl."

Breeder: "Surely thing all the ones in this cage are girls."

Us: "We want the spotted one who is licking everyone can we look at her."

Breeder: "Here you go don't worry about the screaming just scratch it behind it's ears an it will calm down eventually."

Us: "Okay will you take a check?"

Breeder: "No man cash only."

Us: "Okay give us a bit."

Breeder: "No problem I'll just put her in this other carrier for you."

Us: "By the way how big will she get?"

Breeder: "50 to 75 pounds. Just feed her milk for three months then work in this feed or something similar."

Us: "Do they get along with dogs?"

Breeder: "Yep we have two boxers and they do great."

Us: "What about vet care."

Breeder: "Dugh they don't needed none we just deworm them from home."

Us: "Where do we get food for it when it is done with the nurse all milk?"

Breeder: "Just get this here food at the co-op or something similar with these same ingredients."

Us: "We are $50 dollars short can we write you a check for it."

Breeder. "No man you'll just have to get a boy."

Us: We really want the one we picked out I guess we will keep trying.

Us: "Okay sorry for the wait here is all of the money."

Breeder: "Here is your pig enjoy."

     After this we returned home the proud  owners of a new potbelly pig and all of the mess we were trying to deal with seemed like a distant memory.
     If you have stayed with me this long I thank you unfortunately it is now pig walking time, and as we soon learned a pig waits for no one. I will just have to continue this saga at another time. Please tune in next time to hear the weird tale how we named our new pet, the dogs reaction and the surprise of a lifetime.