I recently received an email from Catherine who has never had a pig before and is now a new pig keeper.
i was wondering if you could help me with some information. i own a farm where we just have cattle however a black pig has appeared and when we found out who owned it they said they didnt want it so i was going to keep it however i dont know the 1st thing about looking after pigs. Could you tell me do i need to get pig meal etc or does it get grass etc.
i would be very grateful if you could help. thanks
You will need a holding number for the pig which you will have if you have cattle. You will need to inform defra that you have the pig and register it by contacting your local Animal Health Office who will issue with a herd number.That’s the official stuff.
Feeding your pig. Pigs love to forage for food and will eat grass and mud and clear waste ground for you if you have some! I would also feed the pig twice a day on a ration of pig pellets which you will be able to get from your local animal feed store. Depending on the age and what your intentions are for the pig will depend on the type of feed. Weaners will be on a milky pellet(4-8 weeks old) or growers pellet (8 weeks onwards)whereas an adult sow or boar would be on a sow breeders pellet. I have two sows and I feed mine sow breeders pellets at times but a cheaper alternative is to feed your pig milled barley with a breeder concentrate mixed in. If you change the feed from pellets to barley mix then try to change the feed gradually – although I’m sure you already know this.
The defra document A Guide For New Pig Keepers is quite useful and the ebook by Rebecca Hillman Raising Weaners for the table, has lots of really useful information. Click on this link to find info about the pig ebook.
Let me know how you get on. Hope this is helpful.
I am pleased to say that Catherine did reply, “Hi, thank you so much for your help i have been getting things sorted for the pig and hopefully it will have a long and happy life at my farm, it is already the boss of the calves.
If you are a new pig keeper and would like some advice then please leave a comment.