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Pigs Pigs Pigs

Updated on February 12, 2010

Your Task - Get to Know a Pig

Pigs are wonderful animals. They are intelligent, clean, social and sensitive. They can also be very cute! The problem is most people don't give our piggy friends a chance. Many people have never even met a pig, let alone got to know one.

Did you know pigs can be trained just like a dog and just love a scratch on the belly? Read on to find out more about pigs and soon you will love these clever animals as much as I do.

Facts About Pigs - The more you know the more you will love them

"I like pigs. Dogs look up to us. Cats look down on us. Pigs treat us as equals."

British politician and Nobel Prize Laureate Winston Churchill.

1. Pigs are omnivores. This means they will eat most kinds of food. In the wild they use their large snouts to forage for truffles, worms, insects and plants. They will also eat tree bark and will scavenge food from other creatures leftovers.

2. Pigs are smarter than dogs. Yes it is really true. They can be toilet trained and trained to complete tasks. They have long term memories and respond to voice commands. "[Pigs] have the cognitive ability to be quite sophisticated. Even more

so than dogs and certainly three-year-olds."

Professor Donald Broom of Cambridge University Veterinary School

3. Pigs are playful. Pigs just love to play. In the wild they have highly complex social structures and from about 3 weeks old the piglets will start to play. They really are a joy to watch and they will play with you too.

4. Pigs are not dirty That is just a myth, which stems from the fact that pigs bathe in mud to cool themselves down. Mud also acts as an effective sunscreen. Pigs do not sweat, so it is necessary to cool down in other ways. You know what? Pigs actually prefer to cool off in water if given a choice and in the wild they will build their toilet area away from the rest of their home.

5. Pigs are great mothers Pigs will leave the group a day before giving birth and will collect leaves and nesting material to make her nest. She will spend her first week with her piglets isolated from the rest of the group, in the nest. She develops a strong bond with the little ones and will even sing to them.

Training a Pig to Sit Video - This is gorgeous

This lady is treating her piglet just right and look how the little piglet is taking to her training.

Pigs Are Friends Not Food

Pigs make great friends, just like dogs do.

Every day thousands of pigs are suffering so that people can eat their meat. These intelligent and sensitive animals are subjected to such cruelty that it is hard to comprehend.

There are over 300,000 breeding sows (female pigs) in Australia alone and these pigs are only valuable as long as they can produce large litters of piglets. As soon as their productivity begins to wane they are slaughtered.

The poor sows are kept in sheds and usually confined, so that they can not even turn around. They are kept on hard floors, without straw, or bedding. These 'sow stalls' have been banned in the UK and are being phased out in Europe, but we still have them in Australia - Why?

The sows piglets have their teeth and tails clipped and are castrated without pain relief. After a month or so the piglets are removed to be fattened for slaughter and she becomes pregnant again. The only time she will see daylight is when she is being trucked to slaughter.

Pigs cannot demonstrate any natural behavior in these conditions. The slaughterhouse is bad enough, but these inhumane conditions are unacceptable.

If you love pigs, just don't eat them. It is as simple as that. There are plenty of vegetarian pork substitutes in supermarkets and health food stores and veggie food is a lot healthier too.

Pig Books - the more you learn, the more you will love them

The Pig Who Sang to the Moon: The Emotional World of Farm Animals
The Pig Who Sang to the Moon: The Emotional World of Farm Animals

This is a fantastic book that examines the emotions of farmed animals. It is full of wonderful anecdotes and hard facts. A book you will want to read time and time again.

Pleasurable Kingdom: Animals and the Nature of Feeling Good (MacSci)
Pleasurable Kingdom: Animals and the Nature of Feeling Good (MacSci)

This book looks at animal's capacity for pleasure. There are many examples of pigs, as well as other animals seeking out pleasure and generally enjoying life when given a chance.

The Good Good Pig: The Extraordinary Life of Christopher Hogwood
The Good Good Pig: The Extraordinary Life of Christopher Hogwood

The author of this book adopts a piglet, who is the runt of a litter. This book follows their adventures and is a truly wonderful read.

Babe: The Gallant Pig
Babe: The Gallant Pig

The book that the famous film is based upon. A great read for children and adult's alike.

All Pigs Are Beautiful: Read and Wonder
All Pigs Are Beautiful: Read and Wonder

The title is so true and this book captures the funny side of pigs and generally makes you appreciate them even more.


Pigs Are People Too

Well here are some ways in which we are similar

Have you ever looked into the eyes of a pig? It is a strange thing, like looking at a familiar face, which you can't quite place. The fact is you can see a pig's intelligence and sentience in his eyes and if everyone took the time to look at a pig I think no one could hurt them (or eat them).

Pigs have a knowing look, a kind of wise and thoughtful look. Here is a quote from Juliet Gellatley's book 'Silent Ark', describing a pig she met at a factory farm:

"his huge head hanging down low towards the barren floor. As I cam level with him he raised his head and dragged himself slowly towards me on lame legs. With deliberation he looked straight at me, staring directly into my eyes. It seemed to me that I saw in those sad, intelligent, penetrating eyes a plea, a question to which I had no answer: 'Why are you doing this to me?'"

Pigs have a full range of emotions that they display when given a chance. They love to play and are a joy to watch.

Many of the pigs organs are very similar to ours. Their eyes look somewhat similar and their noises (such as when they squeal) can sound like a human scream.

On the website Farm Sanctuary there are pages of stories about pigs that have been rescued from a horrible fate and are now safe and living out there lives in peace.

Piggy Links - Check out these links to learn more about pigs

These are my fave pig related sites, You can help pigs, learn about them, learn how to go veggie and lots more. Enjoy!

The Tamworth Two - The exciting tale of two pigs who escaped the slaughterhouse

In 1998, in Britain, two Tamworth pigs (one of the oldest pig breeds) managed to escape the slaughterhouse. They burrowed under a fence, swam across a large, icy river and hid in a thicket.

Days later when the slaughter man saw them, they ran away as fast as they could. They were not captured until 7 days later. The abattoir they escaped from was later criticized for appalling standards,

This was one of the first times the public became aware that a pig does not want to die and the newspapers covered the story, winning massive support for the pigs. Hundreds of people offered the animals a home and now they are living out the rest of their lives in an animal sanctuary.

I love this story because it has a happy ending, but it does bring home the point that pigs are incredibly stressed when being transported to the slaughter house and even more so when they get there. The noises, smells and atmosphere let them know exactly what is going on. These two pigs escaped with an urgency that implies they knew what was going to happen and I am so happy they did escape their fate.

The Smartest Pig Video - This pig is a superstar. His owner has obvioulsy spent a lot of time with him.

Spend time with your pet pig and you can work on training too. Always keep it fun, just like you would with a dog. See I told you pigs were smart!

Pet Pigs

Yup pigs do make great pets

If you have a couple of acres of land and time to spend with them a couple of pet pigs are a lovely part of the family. George Clooney famously had a pet pot bellied pig, who only recently passed away.

There are often pigs looking for homes at rescue centres and they would love to find someone who could give them a peaceful, loving place to live and plenty of attention.

Pigs are complex animals and you will discover so much as you spend time with them. You should provide plenty of digging space, shelter, toys and food.

Remember a lonely pig is a sad pig, so make sure you get more than one pig and spend lots of time with them both. Do your research and read up as much as you can before getting your pigs, so that you know that you are doing the right thing.

Very Cute Baby Pig Video - This is a miniature piglet. What a cutie.

This little one is adorable, but remember pigs grow and can be a fair amount of work. However, if you have the space, time and money they make wonderful companions.

Comments, Questions? - Share your piggy knowledge, opinions and ideas.

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    • profile image


      6 years ago

      I know my kids would love a pet pig! Hard to imagine them taking commands like a dog though. I'm sure it'd give the visitors a thrill when I tell "Fido" to sit and fetch!

    • profile image


      7 years ago


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      7 years ago

      Awwhh, I love these cute little piggys!

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    • photofk3 profile image


      7 years ago

      Piglets are my favorite animals. They are the cutest creatures I can think of. And I already knew of their values (szch as they are intelligent, friendly, etc...). Very well written lens, keep it up.

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      @anonymous: I got lots of ideas from this. Love it!



    • profile image


      8 years ago

      @anonymous: Cool lens guys!


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      8 years ago

      awesome, i think any animals can be train but just be patient in teaching!


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    • SusannaDuffy profile image

      Susanna Duffy 

      9 years ago from Melbourne Australia

      Blessed by an Angel today (

    • AppalachianCoun profile image


      9 years ago

      Nice lens. We understand what you are saying, we can't watch the movie "BABE" because of the first scene. Thank-you for all the info.

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      Very cute lens....maybe one day when I finally own a farm I might consider 2. Do you own a pig as a pet or have in the past? Very informative and interesting to read.


    • the power of j profile image

      the power of j 

      9 years ago

      hi catherine! great lens, very informative. i collect pig paraphernalia (they are so cute!) from pig salt and pepper shakers to ice cream scoops and chimes. i have a pig collectible lens and linked to yours. please check it out.


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