Ringed Pigs

Does ringing pigs work? This is a question I was recently asked,

I have three one year Kune Kune pigs. They have started rooting the ground, something which I was told Kunes generally do not do.
It is very distructive and I fear for the newly planted trees, so I have confined them to a small plot.
I am thinking of having them ringed, as they are primarily grazers, so I do not think it would be inhumane or that I would be depriving them of needed nurition. I am assuming this would have to be done by a vet.
My main question is, does it definately work?

Hi Anna,
Thanks for visiting farmingfriends and leaving a comment.
I don’t have any kune-kune pigs nor do I have pigs with a ring so I can only advise you from what I have read.
Reading about kune-kunes, it seems that they do like to graze and will therefore root about.

In Storey’s Guide to Raising Pigs I have read about ringing pigs, “Ringing is the clipping of soft metal rings to the top rim of the hog’s nose or across the end of the nose with …a ‘humane ring.'” The book says that when the pig starts to root the ring cause mild pain and therefore stops the pig from rooting. It says that the rings are not very expensive and can be applied with a ring plier. It also mentions that the ring can be easily lost, “especially those in the tip of the nose”. It also mentions the pain factor involved when applying because as we all know as soon as you pick up a pig they squeal their heads off even if you are not doing anything to them!!!
I think if I needed to have my pigs ringed then I would seek advice from my vet and actually get the vet to do the job.
The pigs will need to be restrained so that the ring can be applied and as your pigs are 1 year olds, although a smaller breed, they will be still be a decent size to restrain and ring. I think that seeking advice from your vet will be useful as they will be able to tell you if the ring works.
I hope you find this information useful. Just to let you knwo that I have recently set up a forum where pig enthusiasts can chat about their pigs and post questions such as this. It is free to join and may be of interest to you. http://farmingfriends.com/forums/forum.php?id=3

Let me know what you decide to do and I would love to see a picture of your kune-kunes. Have you named them?

Kind regards
Sara @ farmingfriends

It is such a great feeling when I get a reply back;

Hi Sarah, Thanks for the info. I have in fact been in touch with my vet, who has put rings on Kunekunes and he is coming this week to fit them. I wanted to get as many views as I could before deciding to go down this route, the alternative was to try to divide the field up, but then they are so quick in their rooting, we would end up with no pasture before the winter. I did think of hiring them out as four legged ploughs. I do have names for them : Amy, Hector and Plato. I would love to send pictures. I will certainley visit the site again Anna

If you have any experience of ringed pigs or ringing pigs then please leave a comment.

A useful book for a new pig keeper and breeder is the book Starting With Pigs by Andy Case.

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Click on the image below to visit Amazon.co.uk to find out more about this book or visit one of the Farming Friends Bookshops.

Storey’s Guide to Raising Pigs

  1. Hi
    If you don’t put a ring in their noses, you won’t have any grass left – now they have started.

    The same happened to Jimmy when he started his Essex Pig Company. He put his pigs in his wooded area, and now most of the young trees are dead.

    Comment by TopVeg – September 6, 2008 @ 6:43 pm

  2. Anna hi! … I’ve also got 3 kune kunes and found that they did root about when they were contained in a small area – but as soon as i opened them up into a bigger paddock they stopped almost immediately. As you probably know, Kunes should have at least 80% grass/vegetatian in their daily diet – but do not like grass that is soiled or trampled on. Hence they dig it up. If you can trust them and are able to fence off a bigger area, then I am sure the rooting will be minimised. If they are kune X’s, then maybe this wont be the case!I do not think ringing kunes is a good idea – again as they are so dependant on grass eating etc… and have never seen a kune with a ring. But if you do, then it must be a vet job!!If you want to chat it through more, drop me a line on richard2406@btinternet.com

    Good luck!! 😮 )

    Comment by Richard – September 11, 2008 @ 2:35 pm

1 thought on “Ringed Pigs”

  1. I just really don’t know why people can’t tell you the truth…..all pigs root. Kunes just don’t root as bad as a potbelly or hog. With ringing……….How Cruel, would you want a ring in your most sensitive body part….think about it. Just give them a bigger pasture to graze in. I have 44 Kunes and they don’t root……………..

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