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Pot Bellied Pigs/Our Pot Belly Pig's belly seems to be getting large

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QUESTION: Our family pig Toby is 7 months old.  He is neutered.  He would never eat his pellets.  They lady we go him from had him on a mixture of baby rice cereal, applesauce, goat milk and bread.  I have slowly given him apples, greens, carrots are his favorite. For treats in training he get cherries.   The last few days he is finally eating his pellets.  I am giving them to him in swap of a meal of his mixture.  He is really gassy and seems bloated.  He is drinking a lot of water lately as well.  Am I moving him to fast to his pellets?  I am really worried about him.  He just does not seem himself.  He is will still run around and play a little but does seem tired.  
Thank you for your help.  He is a part of our family.

ANSWER: A sudden change in diet can cause a tummy ache. But, at this point, because you've already switched the best thing to do is keep him on his pellets. He will adjust in a day or two

I noticed you mentioned apples are his favorite. The fiber in apples can make a piggy gassy if piggy eats a lot of apple at once. Grazing outside on grass will do the same thing. Apples and grass are great for pigs, so let him have them. But, you might want to make sure he doesn't eat more than one apple at a time.

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QUESTION: He is feeling better.   He has taken a liking to carrots as well.   
Now he is doing better.   Except now he is starting to be defiant.   He is having accidents out of his litter box.
Even right by us.  Then he know he did wrong because he runs to his bed.  
Help?  Please.
Thank you
Staci

ANSWER: I am wondering if there's something about the litter box that bothers him? A good box should have one low side for piggy to step into. Pigs do not like to step up to go potty, they'd rather step downhill to go potty. So he will be reluctant to step over a high edge on a potty box.

The box has to be big enough for him to turn completely around inside it, and to spread his feet far enough apart for him to pee. It also needs a non-slip surface, so he can balance safely while he potties


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QUESTION: He has a low profile litter box.   He uses it all the time except sometimes when he is out he is right by it and messes on the floor.  He never poops outside of his box only pees.    I clean his box all the time as we'll.    what pellets do you recommend?  We have also noticed since Toby finally started eating his pellets he seems tired and has a bad odor.    His cage is constantly cleaned and he gets baths.    He was so spunky before his pellets.   We miss him  being this way.   It seems the pellets have caused him to gain more weight.  I moderate how much he is given.   Thank you very much for all your hellp

Answer
The best pellets are ones made specifically for mini pigs by one of the major manufacturers. Once the feed leaves the mill, the manufacturer has no control over how the feed is handled, and feed can go bad if it isn't handled properly.

Feed for swine is made to make a pig grow quickly for slaughter. It isn't good for a pigs long term health.

To check the feed for freshness, first look for an expiration date. If the date is past, throw it out. If the food is very powdery or has large, funny looking clumps, throw it out. Take a 1/2 cup or so of the feed, mix it with about a cup of water, and microwave it for about a minute. Stir it up and sniff. The food should smell grainy or earthy. It should NOT smell sour, sharp, bitter, or just plain bad.

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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