THE RISING FAME OF PET PIGS:
Micro Mini Pigs Takes Center Stage
Humans keep pets for several reasons: company, ornament, partners, cute member of the family, friend, and many others. The first animal presumably, that became domesticated were dogs. Hence the phrase, “man’s best friend” which still rings very true today. During the ancient times however, they were treated as beasts as they were considered human’s attacker and competition for food. However, when ancient people start using fire to cook meat, they throw away unused skins and bones. As source of food became scarce, especially during the ice age, wolves or dogs fed on human’s leftovers. This relationship continued until such time dogs became dependent on human food. They hunted and lived together with humans. Today, we breed these animals for a specific purpose and for various reasons.
Till voila, pigs that were once meat-for-food, take center stage and steal the show of the dogs! Indeed, many pet lovers nowadays focus their attention to raising pigs. Not just any ordinary swine, but tiny, cute, and lovely pigs.
Hogs have the reputation of being smelly, dirty, and fat. But today’s new breed of pigs rose to fame as people are starting to keep them as pets. Even celebrities like Paris Hilton – American heiress of Hilton Hotels, Rupert Grint – Ron Weasley of Harry Potter Movie, and David Beckham – famous footballer become the latest proud owners of these micro mini pigs.
When did all start?
These cute porkies were once developed in the 1980s for medical research in Europe. Many scientists used them as ‘lab rats’ – a source of organ transplants, aging, and for many other purposes. The reason for this is that they are much easier to handle compared to the typical 1000 pound swine. From being lab rats they become “circus animals” in zoos and parks. Tourists find them interesting because they were unusual – small stature, potbellies, and sway backs – which attract many paying visitors.
After rich pet owners started keeping them as pets, raring these cute porkies became the new trend. Various people followed to get in to the new drift. These tiny hogs appeared everywhere in huge cities and other urban areas. However, the popularity was ephemeral as city ordinances ban raising farm animals in the city.
Even so, the new millennium opens its doors to these cute squealers as scientists developed a new size of these animals suitable for pet lovers who lives in the city. After Paris Hilton purchased her first mini pig, the trend started to rise again among people.
What is the difference between teacup and mini pigs?
These pets are also known in various names. People usually call them teacups or mini pigs interchangeably. So, what is the difference between these two terms? Both are smaller compared to the usual hogs in farms and breeding cages. However, they vary according to size, appearance, behavior, and diet. The former, not actually teacup size as the name implies, stands only around 14 and a half inches tall. They can grow as stall as a cocker spaniel when they reach maturity after two or three years. They weigh only around 25 pounds and lives up to 20 years if properly raised. Because of their size and short legs, they have several limitations, such as climbing stairs. Also, they do not aim for an alpha position in the home. Lastly, they do not require tons of food because they are very small compared to their farm counterpart.
On the other hand, the latter (miniature potbelly) stands taller than teacups and are very curious. They are always busy, navigating around the house looking for something interesting. They grow slightly higher than the teacups and can weigh much heavier, between 135 to 160 pounds. Since they are taller, they have a slight advantage. They can climb stairs and challenge their owner for alpha position. Also, they require slightly more food because they are bigger in size. However, they are still low maintenance pets as they only eat two meals a day.
Nevertheless, both breeds are great companions in the house. They love to play and have fun with their owner all the time. Just make sure to raise them properly and treat them well like new members of the family.
Do these cuties really get big?
For interested buyers or those who have already bought a new one, one common concern is always being asked by customers. How big do they really grow? If you have asked this question, chances are you have already searched for answers online. However, you stumbled on different views and claims from various testimonials. Others would say that they bought a legit micro pig that does not change in size. Some would say that it is a scam and a lie. These issues are being discussed in various sites and there seems to be no end among claims.
To clear the atmosphere, here are some truths about these little giants. Piglets, regardless of their breed, are cute, small, and lovely at birth. Sometimes you cannot determine whether you are looking at a micro piglet or an ordinary farm swine. There are even news reports that a breeder sells a piglet claiming it is a mini pig. Unfortunately, in this case, the owner will be surprised to see the tiny pig turns bigger than expected.
Will they stay small for the rest of their life? No, but they will not get any bigger than the usual hog you see in the farms. In time, these cute animals will reach maturity. However, they will remain smaller than farm hogs, but they will remain cute looking hogs nonetheless.
When you are buying these types of animals as pets, make sure to…
… Find a decent and trusted breeder. He or she will tell you everything about the micro mini pig and will make you fully aware about the pet.
… Consult friends and relatives about the idea of buying one. They might be able to help you differentiate between the real size of ordinary farm piglet and a micro pig.
… Canvass the cost and match several prices. Be an intelligent buyer, so you will not be fooled.
… Learn how to raise such delicate animals. You may look for various articles that instructs on proper breeding, or you may read the following tips bellow:
How to feed, care, and raise these pets?
1.Provide them with appropriate living area. Check for proper temperature and environment so they will not get sick easily. You may set up a small room especially for them, where you can toilet train them. Also you may choose to fence them as long as they are high enough above their reach.
2.Use heavy and large bowls for their food and water. These will help to keep them from scattering their food from the bowl. Make sure to replace fresh water before each meal. You may purchase manufactured food for these animals or you can prepare fresh and uncooked vegetables for breakfast and supper. Refrain from feeding them with leftovers. Also, do not feed them generously so they will not grow faster.
3. Visit veterinary clinics regularly for initial checkup, vaccinations, or for neutering. Ask the veterinarian about specific diet for your pet. You may also inquire for additional info on how to keep your favorite healthy.
4.Spend some time for harness training to exercise your pet. You may bring your favorite pet during early morning walks around the park.
These animals deserve love from its owners. They require care and attention from you. Keeping miniature teacup pigs in your home is very rewarding as they can ward-off boredom, stress, and troubles. Enjoy the companionship of your micro mini pigs by spending ample time with them!