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Pot Bellied Pigs/my 3 weeks babypig

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Question
Hi,miss Helen Morrison.I have a small babypig that I call minipig.

My name is remi wever and I am from aruba. I bought a pig and he is 3 weeks old when I bought it it was 2 weeks old and now this week is 3 weeks old.At first day it was a little difficult because he was new to us at home but the second day he already want bottle of milk and I am giving him babymilk and still do and what I notice is that when he get to know you he want to be all around me because he is allways hungry and I give him bottle as instructed on the on the disciption and he like it.When he finish drinking he he like to do the thing with his snout on my hand(very funny)and when I begin to walk he come after me and somethimes running.I am doing some research how to care for my pet pig better that is why I'm asking a few things.to begin with I am feeding him with nultrilon baby milk first step and behind the label says 2-8weeks give him certain amound of milk etc.but in aruba we don't have vet for pig to get some advice but we have some farmers her on aruba but I don't want to give him everything because I want him to be healty as much as possible.so what do you suggest me to feed him after 8 weeks feeding him babymilk?because I think he is to small to begin to eat something else? I also bought a ball for him and I am trying to learn him to play with the ball but I guess he small maybe to learn quikly hahaha I don't know.may you can advice me some easy tricks to begin with too.he is so cute. maybe I can send you a pic of him but on this website I don't know how to do it.can I give him after time some pigfood.i want him to stay small so I will appreciate any help you can give me. thank you very much.

remi wever
aruba

Answer
Your baby is very young to be away from his birth mom. Pigs normally do not wean their piglets until they are 8 weeks old. Your baby will not be interested in any food other than milk or thick cereals until he is about 6 or 7 weeks old. Even then, he may only taste a new food and spit it out before trying it again.

Young babies like yours need to eat often. The snout pushing is a natural behavior, it encourages the momma pig's body to make more milk. The best milk is goat milk or sow replacement formula.

The best food for him is mini pig food. If that's not available, look for a food that's got about 12% to 14% protein and low in fat. Complete horse pellets (NOT "sweet feed") or multi-animal foods are good choices. Commercial hog chow is made for pigs to eat for a short time before slaughter and often contains drugs, it is not a good choice for long term use.

Piggy can eat all kinds of veggies and fruits. Grazing and rooting time outside is important, as piggies get critical trace nutrients from the soil.

Teach him to eat the pellets by adding just a few to his regular milk meal, then add more at each meal. Let the pellets get soft and squishy. When you are feeding him the full amount of squishy pellets, you can switch the milk to water and continue feed the food wet, or gradually reduce the milk and eventually feed the food dry.

The general rule of thumb is 1/2 c food per 15 lb of piglet, no less than 1/2 cup per day. Tiny pigs may not eat it all. Some pigs will need more food, up to 2 cups a day. A lot depends on the food itself.

I highly recommend the books "Pot-Bellied Pig Behavior and Training" by Priscilla Valentine. Pris really understands how pigs think and why they do the things they do. Another good book is "Veterinary Care of Pot-Bellied Pigs" by Lorrie Blackburn-Boldrick. The dvds from tophogs.com , "There's a Pig in the House" and "Amazing Pig Tricks" are very good. There's a list of veterinarians who see pet pigs, and lots more piggy info, at www.farec.org  Another good website is www.pigs4ever.com  Yahoo groups has several groups devoted to pet pigs, I recommend PigInfoAndChat and PotSpot

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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