Environment for pigs kept as pets

If you're new to keeping pigs, here's what you need to know about creating a suitable environment for them to live in.

Housing

You'll need to give your pigs warm, dry, draught-free, straw-bedded housing, as they easily get cold. Make sure it's well ventilated, and give them enough room to make separate areas for dunging, exploring and sleeping.

Your pigs will need somewhere dry to lie down, and a minimum area of 36 square metres (6 x 6 metres) per pig (ideally a larger space). You'll need to clean the house and everything inside it frequently and disinfect it to remove parasites.

Outdoor area

Give your pigs a wallow and shelter from the sun in warm weather, as pigs can get sunburn and/or sunstroke. They're very strong animals, so you'll need robust fencing surrounding their living area to stop them from escaping. Fences should be well maintained and provide protection against wild animals, as well as ensure that your pigs can't become trapped or injured.

It's a good idea to put straw, hard plastic balls and tyres in the pig pen for the pigs to play with, as this encourages them to exercise and prevents boredom.

A few things to remember when keeping pigs

  • Don't keep a pig in your home.
  • Pigs will spend a large part of the day exploring their environment, rooting and foraging at the earth, greatly disturbing the land and quickly causing all vegetation to disappear.
  • Pigs shouldn't be exposed to draughts, sudden temperature changes and prolonged sunlight.

Find out about looking after your pigs' diet, company and health and welfare in our caring for pet pigs page.

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