We took over some breeding stock in 2014, and at the time we already had three young pet pigs living at the farm.
At the time that we took over our herd, the pigs were referred to as “micro mini”. Quite honestly, it’s a term we were never really comfortable with, but it’s what everyone who was breeding seemed to be calling them. The term “micro mini” sounds like something that should fit in your smart phone!
Then there is the often-used and confusing term “teacup” pig, although the real history behind this name comes from the fact that the pigs in that breeding line liked to drink tea from the breeder’s teacup. It was not originally intended to suggest that the pigs should fit into one!
Thankfully, other breeders out there are also dropping those terms, and settling instead on just “mini pigs”. We are much more comfortable with that term, or even just to call them small pet pigs. It doesn’t make them any larger than they were before – it’s just a better description.
Our boars (daddy pigs) each have their own private little house and yard. We found that this was the best way to keep them all from going crazy every time the sows (mommy pigs) go into heat, which is every three weeks.
The sows and the neutered boys all share the main piggy barn and yard. On nice days they can wander in and out of the barn as they please and they do a lot of socializing.
Then there’s Sophie (also known as “Piggers”), who was the first pig at the farm. She’s not a mini, although we think she was sold to her original owner as one. (She also wasn’t spayed by the breeder – big red flag.) Sophie lives under the deck at the farm and wanders about as she pleases, and sometimes follows the horses on trail rides.
When the first litters were born at the farm, the family children got very excited and really wanted to keep piglets as pets. So now there are a few more who wander around the farm and live under the deck with Sophie.
Also at the farm are about twenty horses, two goats, two sheep, quite a few chickens, two dogs and a few cats! The youngest dog, Bo, is a mixed breed herding dog who became best friends with big pig Sophie. When all of our other pigs arrived, he decided he needs to be best friends with all the pigs. Now he feels that he is the dog who has to guard piglets. He likes to cuddle with them, too.
This is young Bo, with little boar Bug, when Bug was about a year and a half old.
And here’s Bug talking through the fence to Sophie.