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Behavior problems of pet pigs.

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Premier Veterinary Services, Inc, Seven Points, Texas, USA.


Pigs of all kinds can be enjoyable, charming pets, but the reduced size of the Vietnamese potbellied pig makes it an excellent choice for a porcine pet. Their curious, almost childlike behavior, as well as their adaptability and ease of learning, can make them a real pleasure and a great challenge to keep. The author fears that as many as 25% to 50% of potbellied pigs are no longer in their original homes by 1 year of age primarily because of a high incidence of behavior problems. These are, in reality, "people problems," not "pet problems." The environmental and training requirements of the potbellied pig are more complex and require more understanding than those of the average dog or cat. The author's belief is that the potbellied pig's strong drive to be dominant is a unique behavioral characteristic that more people should be made aware of before acquiring a pet pig. With knowledge of normal pig behavior, problems can be avoided through proper socialization and training. If pet owners consult a veterinarian knowledgeable about pig behavior at the first sign of a problem, treatment usually can be successful.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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