Can I train my mini pigs? Before we answer that, let me first introduce what mini pigs are. The American Mini or miniature pigs in general are a “mixed in” or combination of different breed types of feral hogs. Currently there are no tests to determine their genetic make-up or the exact pig breed/s they came from. However, there are parentage test with only a few recognized breeds or types of swine that are filed out. According to research, many pet owners across the United States don’t know and will probably never be interested to know the origin of their pet pigs, but one thing is for sure, their popularity as house pets and in local zoos are increasing. In this article, you’ll more about the American mini pig, and the answer to your question, can I train my mini pigs?
A Mix of Different Hog Breeds
The mixture of genetic breeds from different hogs found in the wild and from their Asiatic ancestors, resulted in a variety of mini pigs that can be identified through their colors. The pure bred hogs and Asiatic pig breeds brought in the U.S. are color white, black as well as black and white with varying patterns.
Today, mini pig owners can choose from a variety of colors such as cream, blue, silver, apricot, strawberry, tangerine, auburn, honey, ash, stone, toffee, champagne, maple, praline, caramel, pecan, chestnut, cinnamon, chocolate mahogany, roan and agouti. You can also choose from its wide variety of markings and patterns such as stripes, spots, ticked, solid, pinto, broken, tricolor, point, tuxedo, belted, saddled and blue butt thanks to scientific breakthroughs. Some breeders and mini pig enthusiasts also bred their own mini pigs thus creating new patterns and mixture of colors but some of it are not officially recognized.
How You Can Train Your Mini Pig
Can I train my mini pigs? Training a mini pig is not that hard to do, it can actually be a great experience.
They are intelligent creatures that are highly motivated by food and routines. Trust is the most important key in training your mini pig.
There are lots of pet owners out there who have properly trained and raised a well-behaved mini pig. They are intelligent creatures that are highly motivated by food and routines. Trust is the most important key in training your mini pig. The first thing you need to do is to be able to establish a solid connection and rapport between you and your pet. This section will provide some guidelines you can do to get your mini pig well-behaved and disciplined.
Learn Basic Skills
Mini pigs make great companions for many reasons. If you are a new pig owner, it may take some time you're your pig to learned the basics. Use small treats such as non-buttered and non-salted popcorn, wheat, cheerios, or small chunks of fruits to entice your mini pig to come to you and follow your command. Aside from using treats, you should also set a specific time during the day for your training because pigs also liked routines. It is advisable to train them before bedtime so that they will have a good night sleep. Physical exercises and mental workout is best done when your pig is focused, so don’t do it right after eating their meal or when they are hungry.
How to Litter Train Them
Mini pigs especially the young piglets do not have full bladder control, so if you don’t want any litter around your house, you have to train them while they’re young.
When it comes to potty training you have three options; you can use a litter pan inside, train them to poop outside or both. Usually it’s better to do both. Changes in the weather may not permit your pig to defecate outside that’s why you should train them using a litter pan inside the house. Young pigs need to start off with small litter boxes or pan until they are old enough to litter outside. Pigs do not want to soil their shed so it’s better to put the litter box in a corner far away from where they sleep or eat but near enough so that they can easily find and remember it.
Potty Training Tips
- Put them in their potty box as often as possible, ideally after they eat and drink. Use reinforcement training and say “Go potty,” they’re intelligent creatures so if you make potty training in a litter a habit they will surely retain it.
- Make sure the litter pan is low enough so that your pig can easily enter.
- Do not change the potty spot as much as possible; make it a permanent litter spot for your pig. Once they learned where the spot is, they will always go there to poop because they have already developed it as a habit.
- Be prepared for “potty accidents” on the carpet or flooring.
- Make sure your mini pig mastered their potty training before you let them roam around your house.
- Put up a confined or small area where they can poop
- After eating or drinking, take them outside in their designated potty area
- Use positive reinforcement, say phrases such as “good girl/boy” as well as commands such as “go poop”
- It’s better to give them treats after they have successfully poop outside
- It will also help if you consistently take them outside when pooping for the first few weeks until they have mastered going on their potty spot by themselves.