My husband has always wanted a pig. Ever since I met him at 16 he has wanted a pig. All through our young married life he has been tempted to stop at the sign along the road that advertised weaner pigs (or is it weiner?) I have been successful in talking him out of it until now. Now mind you, there is no eating of the animals on our small farm. If you land here, you stay here for life. I have nothing against anyone that chooses to raise and butcher. I have even enjoyed the fruits of their labor. I just can't eat anything I raised. I learned this lesson at age 15 when Gabriel (the name I called him)/Soupbone(the name my dad gave him) was put on the table before me. So I figured we didn't need a pig. My husband was sure he needed a pig so we decided to find a pot bellied pig for our glorified petting farm. It wasn't that easy. Pot bellied pigs were all the rage about 20 years ago but now are not that easy to find. They have fallen out of favor because people have discovered they are " PIGS." I did my research. I went online and read about them. Websites showed tiny pigs cuddling with their owners and I thought "How cute, I can do that". So my husband had the brilliant idea of going on Craigslist to look. I am ashamed to say I am now addicted to Craigslist. Anyway, it wasn't too long before someone posted two pig sisters Daphne and Fiona. They were socialized, spayed(that's important) and friendly so off we went to see them. A darling young couple met us at the gate with their beautiful babies in tow and we went to go see the pigs. Daphne and Fiona were just what we wanted. The little toddler was even in the pen with them. My husband was in love, especially with Fiona because he loves Shrek and she has a cute white mohawk. We loaded them in their custom made traveling crate and brought them home to the farm.
That was the end of our peaceable kingdom.
The llama, Koo, hated them. He made noises I had never heard him make before in the 4 years we have had him. The goats hated them. It was hate all around. It went from everyone grazing calmly around the pasture to everyone running and crashing through bushes trying to get away from the pigs. They weren't even housed with the other animals but just the thought of pigs sent all into a frenzy. To make matters worse, I was scared of them. Me, also known as Dr. Dolittle to my friends, was just a bit afraid of them. I then realized the only time I had been around pigs was when my best friend and I had hung out in the pig barn at the fair because the best looking boys showed pigs. That was the only contact I had with them and I wasn't paying much attention to the pigs.
Daphne and Fiona challenged me and snapped at me when I tried to pet them. They demanded food so I fed them. They were definitely pigs. They didn't challenge my husband, well really they did he just didn't notice. It does no good challenging anyone if they don't even notice. I, being the animal person, noticed everything they threw at me. So I complained to my hubby that I didn't really like the pigs and he replied "Well I do" Hmmm.....being the problemsolver that I am I got online and asked advice. I am not sure what anyone did before the computer. I poored out my problem to perfect strangers and the answers came flying back. My pigs were going through puberty! So it seems that around 18 months pigs will naturally start challenging you. They also were mourning the loss of their family and first home. The advice was give them time. Pigs are amazingly smart and clean, I have come to realize. I sat down by their pen and had a talk with them about us coexsisting together and I swear they understood. Little by little things have gotten much better. The llama has stopped making the weird noise. The goats have stopped crashing through bushes and the pigs will let me give them a good scratch. They come when called and will sit on command. We have learned how to trim their feet. Not an easy task as there is nothing to hang on to on an angry pig but we are do-it-yourselfers and won't pay anyone if we can do it ourselves. It wasn't pretty. Let's just say the neighbor came over to see what was killing the pig.
Once again it is my peaceable kingdom and all I have to say is....................bring on the buck.