How To Care For Your Pot Belly Pig

Pot Belly Pigs Make Wonderful Pets

A pot belly pig can make a wonderful pet. They are intelligent, sociable, bond well with the family and are easy to train. The defining characteristics of the pot belly pig are a swayed back, short legs, ears that stand erect and a straight tail. Of course the most noticeable feature of the pot belly pig, and the reason for the name, is the pronounced pot belly. Not all pot bellied pigs are small or miniature. Some can reach 200 pounds upon maturity.

A Star is Born

baby pot bellied pig
baby pot bellied pig

Bonding with your Pot Belly Pig

Pot belly pigs can be very friendly and will bond with their owners, but they need to be socialized. Upon bringing home a baby pot belly pig, you may find him shy. If the pig hasn't been handled a lot by the breeder, the baby pig will most likely not want to be held or cuddled, which on looking at that adorable face, is the first thing you want to do. With patience and a lot of handling, your pig will grow to love you and will seek your affections. Although that cute baby pig may soon outgrow your lap.

Since the way to your pot belly pig's heart is through his stomach, training is best accomplished by giving treats as a reward for his good behavior. Just be sure to use nutritious snacks such as small pieces of fruit, since obesity is an inherent health risk for pigs. You can gain your new baby pig's trust by hand feeding him his meals. Let each family member be involved so the pig can bond with everyone. Be sure to give your pig well balanced meals, supplemented by healthy snacks during training sessions.

Halter training

Exotic pets - training your pot belly pig
Exotic pets - training your pot belly pig

Training your Pot Belly Pig

Your pot belly pig can be house trained using the same techniques you would use to train a puppy. Take the pig outside every couple of hours, after meals and when he wakes up. Come up with a key phrase, such as 'let's go out', and use it every time you take the pig outside to do his business. Using a lot of positive praise will reinforce his good behavior.

Though your pot belly pig prefers to relieve himself outside, he can be box trained. A pig will require a larger litter box than your cat would. A commercial sized cement mixing tub works well. The box should be lined with newspapers and wood chips. Pigs don't like to relieve themselves near their food, so keep the box well away from the eating area.

How to care for your pot belly pig
How to care for your pot belly pig

Housing your Pot Belly Pig

Even if you pig is an indoor pig, he still needs to get outside to root and get exercise. Make sure you take your housebound pig outside at least once a day.

If you pot belly pig is an outside pig, make sure you monitor his exposure to the elements. Pigs do not do well in extreme ranges of temperature. Provide a large sized dog house for sleeping. Line the bottom of the dog house with several blankets, for your pig's comfort. When the temperature rises, get a plastic swimming pool for your pig to cool off in and make sure they have a lot of shade to rest in.

Although rooting is a favorite pastime of all pigs, it is a behavior related to eating. A well fed pig will root less. You can get a separated kiddie pool filled with dirt for your pig to root in.

How to care for your pot belly pig
How to care for your pot belly pig

Feeding your Pot Belly Pig

Your pot belly pig will eat most anything you give him. But to insure proper weight gain and a healthy pet, you should feed your pig a commercially prepare pig food. This can be supplemented with fruits and vegetables. By following the manufactures instructions you can properly feed you pet pig and give him a long and healthy life. With the popularity of pot bellied pigs as pets, commercial feed has become easier to find. Check at local pet stores, feed stores or with your veterinarian. Food for you pot belly pig can also be found on line.

healthypigs.com

Exotic pets
Exotic pets

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Comments 36 comments

Philipo profile image

Philipo 7 years ago from Nigeria

This is very detailed and informative. I never knew pigs could be so beautiful. I am only worried about swine flu. Please read my article on swine flu. It will also make an interesting reading.


muley84 profile image

muley84 7 years ago from Miami,FL

I have had a pot belly pig for almost seven years. His name is Wilbur. He is a lot of trouble, I have chronicled the true stories of me and my pig on "Wilbur and Us",on my hub. I am sure you will be able to relate.


lafenty profile image

lafenty 7 years ago from California Author

Muley, thanks for your comments. I had two, but it's been a while. One was great, very friendly, loved to be petted and was best friends with my dog. The other was very aloof. She hadn't been handled by the breeder and was very skittish. Early handling by humans is essential for a great pet.


donna 7 years ago

i would like information on raising mini potbellie pigs


kayla 7 years ago

i am thinking about getting on in the spring time. I have givien it a lot of thought and perhaps a cute piggy will be a great addition to my family!


Kris Carpenter 6 years ago

what is the right way to get your 2 week old pig to eat something except out of baby bottle goats milk and baby rice cereal


AdamGD 6 years ago

How do pot bellied pigs do with other domestic animals like cats and dogs?


lafenty profile image

lafenty 6 years ago from California Author

My pig got along great with my dog. They even slept together. The cat just tended to ignore the pig, but she didn't bother it.


mikaylee  6 years ago

i don't know i really like pigs i just don't know are they a lot of work


lafenty profile image

lafenty 6 years ago from California Author

They really aren't any more work than a dog, plus they are quieter, since they don't bark.


shannon 6 years ago

What is the approx. monthly cost of caring for a mini pot belly pig? (75 lbs, and full grown)


Silver Poet profile image

Silver Poet 6 years ago from the computer of a midwestern American writer

I like potbellied pigs. Thanks for writing this hub.


OGSN profile image

OGSN 6 years ago from Norway

Super hub with some great information. Really good read even for a keeper of pot bellies like myself. Thank you


Eiddwen profile image

Eiddwen 6 years ago from Wales

Oh what a beautiful hub and gorgeous photos. Thank you so much for sharing. Take care lafenty.


Cam Anju profile image

Cam Anju 5 years ago from Stoughton, Wisconsin

I've never thought of a pig as a pet! Though the pictures of the pet pigs remind me of pet puppy dogs. How adorable!


Chance and PEEEEG  5 years ago

i am NEW pot belly pig owner... he is already a year old but such a wonderful pig. so lovin, and what a funny guy... he chases my bull mass (180lbs) around... PEEEEG is 30lbs I love him... he is the best acts better then my husbands chihuahua


pig are awsome 5 years ago

this is the best thanks i might get one now


Libs 5 years ago

Are Pot Belly Pigs like Micro Pigs? Also how much would one weigh and cost? I Can't see the diffrence between a Micro Pig and Pot Belly Pig! But Maybe they are just the same except a Pot Belly Pig can be trained. Anyway if anyone can tell me it would be great thanks.


SillyDragon 4 years ago

I now have a black pot bellied pig. She is about 6 weeks and her name is DaisyMae:) i love her to death! thanks for the informative hub. this will be extremely useful in mine & her bonding and the many year i hope we spend together in life.


lolplo 4 years ago

pigs are grate


lafenty profile image

lafenty 4 years ago from California Author

Yes, they are.


Dread 4 years ago

I've got a white piggy named Pinkerton (Pinkie for short). He is a very friendly and loving little guy. Has a tendency to be grumpy in the mornings but is overall great. I probably don't get him outside as much as I should but I live in Canada, it's quite cold. I'll give him some more outside time once Spring rolls around.


lafenty profile image

lafenty 4 years ago from California Author

Sounds adorable. Wish I had the space for one.


kate 4 years ago

my pot bellie pig gets along with all my anmalies but ny dog dose not like her


Kim 4 years ago

Hi, my name is Kim. I have received a mini pot belly pig from my husband for Christmas, his name is Chuwee and he is about 5 months old. I have other animals as well,(three guinea pigs, rabbit, hedge hog, and five rats) that I thought were the most compassionate, caring and loving animals until I meet chuwee. I have adopted most of my animals and love them all. Chuwee has brought a lot of love and laughter to my husband and I. Chuwee is his alarm clock every morning. They all just want to be loved. Chuwee has the run of our basement witn the rabbit, they get along just fine. I truly recommend a mini pot belly to anyone, watch the love and compassion!


lafenty profile image

lafenty 4 years ago from California Author

He sounds like a great little guy.


hi 4 years ago

Hi I like pigs


lafenty profile image

lafenty 4 years ago from California Author

Me too!


jadyn 4 years ago

i am getting one


christin 4 years ago

Hi am getting a pot belly pig and your blog has been a great help i will update u onhow my pot belly pig turns out:-)


:) 4 years ago

i love potbellied pigs but our neiborhood doesn't allow them. i hope to get one when i move out.


tameka 4 years ago

i have a potbelly micro mini BITIZ. i have had her for a month now. i give her the milk replacer formula she drinks from a bowl. i think she is constapaded? she snezzing out white stuff. i dont know what to do?


on the fence 4 years ago

I have been doing some research and there is one thing I haven't found an answer to yet and was wondering if you could help. In order for the piggy to utilize my hole house I was wondering how their little legs do on a flight of stairs. P.S. thanks for the informative page.


New Mom 4 years ago

I am going to get my first micro mini pig tomorrow. This will be my first pig of any kind and I'm excited, but nervous all at the same time. I have 6 dogs and 2 cats, but they should not be any trouble. I hope I can trust the breeder and "Daisy" will be small and not top the scales at 100lbs when grown. I plan on keeping her in a large dog carrier for a couple days then open the house to her a little at a time. I have several blankets and 2 large stuffed animals for her to travel with tomorrow.


MrsBkay profile image

MrsBkay 3 years ago from Southern California Desert

I have a 200lb Vietnamese Pot Belly named Delilah (after the Plain White Tee's song). She will be 6 years old in a few months. The question I get most from people is "What does she eat?" I simply tell them "Pig Chow from WalMart!". I work at a school and the kids never eat the carrots, apples, oranges, or broccoli so Delilah gets a snack every day. Pigs really don't eat a lot and really are just as much work as a large dog. :)


fern in calgary 3 years ago

I have a female mini pot belly her name is Berta, she is 8 months old, I have a pair of doberman dogs,emma and storm, they love Berta and are very protective of her, she has an outside house and when my dogs go out she meets them nose to nose, likes storm the male better than emma but then she is female, lol love my pot belly, and my pets.

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