Pot Bellied Pigs/Pot bellied pig

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Question
Our pig is about 12 years old. Always healthy.
She has a heated house and our northern calif weather gets down to around 40 degrees.
She is getting up slowly,but can stand...and doesn't want to come out to eat or drink,but does somewhat.
Vets here won't see a pig. I think she is just be nearing her time.
Any advice as to what I should do?

Answer
I am not a veterinarian and can not make a medical diagnosis or provide treatment or medication over the internet.

She may have arthritis, with or without a more serious condition. There is a list of vets that see pot-bellied pigs at www.farec.org

Older pigs are often prone to cancers. I assume her weight and belly size are normal.

If she's walking less, her hooves will not be worn down and may need a trim. Keeping hooves trim helps a lot with arthritic pigs.

There's no shortage of home remedies for arthritis. People have used just about every arthritis home remedy for humans on their pigs, and few that are not recommended for people. I'm going to touch on just a few, I'm sure a Google search will yield many more.

Baby aspirin, given at 325 mg per 5 lb of pig, will definitely provide some relief, but not without some risk. Always give aspirin with food to protect against ulcers. Also, if you can not weigh the pig on a scale, use the weight-by-measurement method to accurately determine the pigs weight (look on www.farec.org I think it's under educational).

Human joint supplements may or may not provide relief. Some of these include Sea Mussels, Sea Cucumber, Devilís Claw (Harpagophytum procumbens), Cod Liver Oil, Glucosamine and Chondroitin. Use the dose recommended on the package.

Dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO) and Methylsulfonylmethane (MSM) are topical (applied to the skin) arthritis remedies. DMSO was a popular home remedy for people back in the 1970s, but dropped out of favor due to side effects (like a bad taste in the mouth) and lack of FDA approval. MSM is a newer remedy, derived from DMSO, and is not currently FDA approved.

Joint supplements made for animals are often less expensive than those made for people. Heartland Animal Health carries several supplements designed for older pet pigs http://healthypigs.easystorecreator.com/items/health-items/list.htm  Supplements made for horses are a popular alternative. www.jefferspet.com and www.valleyvet.com carry dozens of joint supplements for horses in liquid, powder and paste form.  

Pot Bellied Pigs

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Helen Morrison

Expertise

Pot-bellied or other miniature pet pig care, including diet, housing, training, health care. Can provide information about zoning, adoption, supplies, and organizations. Questions about any kind of pet swine are welcome!

Experience

Owning, raising, and caring for small pet swine, including "Vietnamese" pot-bellied pigs since 1992.

Organizations
Pigs of Great Fortune; FAREC; PigCollaborative

Education/Credentials
BBA from KSU

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