Life with Mini Pigs

MY SENSATIONAL POT BELLY PIGS

Hey there uproxxxers! My name is Rachel and I am so incredibly excited to get to know you as an audience and give you a little insight into the very curious life I have been leading. This may be TMI, but I recently inherited my Trust Fund, and my whole life changed. The biggest shift thus far has been the purchase of my two mini pot belly piglets, Harley and Quinn (yes like Margot Robbie’s character in “Suicide Squad”). They are everything. They are extra. They are my life. Where do I start this journey? Well, when I was a little girl..my mother bought me “Charlottes Web”, the original cartoon VHS edition, if you haven’t seen it (which you have), I highly recommend you rent it right this fucking second. I identified with the lead, Fern, very much so, and to sum it up, since I can remember I have always yearned for a house pig. I always dreamt of cuddling them, snuggling them, loving them, and when I was in elementary school, my mother would send me to “Rawhide Ranch”, a farm camp (that later became a christian camp), where I got to take care of real farm animals, from baby cows to horses and of course, the pot bellied pigs http://www.rawhideranch.com ! Knowing, one day it would be a reality, I constantly googled “royal dandies” which I heard were a breed of domesticated mini pigs, from a boarding school friend, Annabelle, who to was obsessed with the notion of owning a pet pig. Years went by living in Los Angeles, anyone that lives here understands, that most people in their twenties live in apartments and they are not ideal for hogs or really dogs for the matter. Fast forward to about 4 months ago, I am now living in a dreamy home in in the Hollywood Hills with two Chihuahua mixes (a morkiechi and a chipoo), Cinderella and Bambi. I had done my research thoroughly, if we’re being honest, the addictive world of Instagram lead me to www.minipigworld.com @minipigworld is their handle. Here, I searched and envied all of their mini pig photos, some of the cutest animals I had ever seen, it couldn’t be real. The prices are steep, 10k for the micro (extra small) pink babes and then it really varies from there, but I haven’t seen one under 2,500.00 on their page. A few things you should know, there is literally no guarantee that your baby sow will remain miniature. However, with some reading, it is easy to locate breeders that have history and a great reputation, these people have specialized in mini pig dealing for 15 years and the full grown pigs they showed on their site, seemed to be the approximate size I was looking for (35-45 pounds full grown). If you are looking to buy a domestic pig, It is important to know that they may grow up to be huge and if they do, you need to be okay with that chance. Period. Back to the story, a sale, just 3,000.00 for 2 mini pigs ( a brother/sister combo). I couldn’t resist, I pressed “buy now” and checked out using PayPal. I couldn’t believe it and at the same time, I knew it was my destiny. Not knowing what to expect, I flooded the breeders DM with every question about when I was getting them, to their doctors visits, food intake and more. There is so much literature on mini pigs online now, that if you want to know specifics, someone has already blogged about it. Thank god, because they are handful. I will never forget the day they were hand delivered to my home. I was on set shooting a movie, and my assistant called me with the great news…. the pigs have arrived early. My heart was racing and my excitement uncontrollable, I knew my babies were near, but I had to wait a few hours before meeting them. I rushed home as soon as we wrapped and quickly unlocked my gate, there they were. In their colorful play pin, among the green grass and behind the salt water pool, lay infants. First things first, when your new pet comes home it’s terrified, genuinely scared and you would be too! Only 2 months old and driven 5 hours or more in a car across California, all to be dropped off at some strangers house. I mean, I get it, as a vegetarian this seems hypocritical just writing about this traumatic event, but their new life was about to begin. Harley and Quinn and both grey with black spots, and corse hair, they have the cutest noses, sharp hooves and Harley (the female) is a full quarter of the size larger than her brother Quinn.

Our daily routine:

7:30 (sometimes earlier) its wakey wakey time and most importantly, feeding time. Originally I was told to feed both of the pigs separately, as well as keep them on “Mazuri” pig grain, bought at a farming supply store. Quickly, I learned that they prefer eating fresh fruits and veggies. Now I shop for them regularly, buying lettuce, mini carrots, tomatoes, bananas, oranges, apples, pears, Cheerios, watermelon, and experimenting with what I think they may want to eat. It is extraordinarily fun as they are at their peak cuteness level when they munch on food, desperately begging and hoping to shovel a juicy morsel into their mouths.
Nap time, as humans do, mini pigs are tired after they gorge themselves. Back to bed for a solid cuddle and nap session they go, burrowing under comforters and pillows or blankets they find. No one want to wake them once they are down, because they are like little babies that need so much attention, its great when they are sleeping.
Most of their days consist of adventure, “ROOTING” in the dirt with their nose, which basically just means burrowing their heads in the dirt and looking for food. I have a big back yard for that purpose, so they can just peruse around and play in the grass, running in between the bushes and hiding beneath the trees. Occasionally I have attempted a walk out in the neighborhood, on a little pink leash, but it usually results in too much squealing.
Dinner time comes early for these little guys, 5 pm it’s time for food and they mean business! They are extremely vocal and you can tell when they are ready to eat because of all the noise they make, you literally have to stop what you are doing and feed them….or else.
Next up on their agenda is roasting their little bodies in front of my fireplace and cuddling up on their white faux fur rug.
The most surprising things about them:
Buying my piggies, I never thought that they would be so human. I had heard that they have the cognitive ability of a 4 year old child and that they were the world’s third smartest animal but nothing could prepare me for what was to come. They are small geniuses.
The snuggling, cuddling, and kissing took me by complete and utter surprise, how crazy is it that they are more affectionate then your average cat or dog?
Gaze at you with all knowing eyes, people say that eyes are the window to our souls, the same is very true for mini pigs, they are soulful creatures who understand your tone of voice, and emotions.
Potty trained and brilliant, both Harley and Quinn prefer to do their business outside, if I am too lazy to get up with them however, they happily go on a pee pee pad.
They can hear from far off distances and if they even think you’re headed to the kitchen- forget it. They are up and racing to the pantry in hopes to be given some tasty treats.
They can literally open door and cupboards with their noses and hop on their hind legs.
Time! They take up so much time, I feel as though they are a full time job, and I would never recommend obtaining these needy little creatures if you can’t dedicate the time necessary to train and love them (Which can vary) but in my case, I am home very often to check in on them.
They get along with other animals, the relationship that they have forged with my puppies is genuine and caring. They treat one another with love and respect, we humans could truly learn a lot from pigs.

How they have changed my perception:

They bring me such an immense amount of happiness, I don’t know how to convey it properly. The relationship you build with pigs is extremely human.
I have been a hardcore vegetarian for 10 years but since owning these little critters, I am committing to full blown veganism (next blog)
Getting to know Harley and Quinn has allowed me to understand how hypocritical we are as a society with the treatment of “pets” versus the animals we deem “live stalk”
I used to believe piglets were soft and pink. Mine are corse and grey.
I will no longer eat anything involving animal products.
I realize how having faux children can change your life and made me reorganize my time and priorities.
It is more common and trendy to own pigs then I ever knew before. It may be but just an L.A. thing.
They can make a huge mess in under 5 minutes but they can also eat a huge feast or the entire contents of my trash can in under 5 minutes so it all balances out.
I recommend these pets to stay at home pet parents or people that can afford full time care of their pets. Also someone who has tons of patience and love to give and understands that pig or human, they need to be treated with respect.

XOXO, Tasha Reign

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