Restraining your Pig

In some areas of the country, and in other countries, it is sometimes difficult (if not impossible) to find a competent vet to care for your mini pig.

While you should NEVER stop looking for such a vet (our veterinary
pages are a good place to start), it is possible to do some of the routine
maintenance yourself.  This can reduce stress on the teacup pig, and on your pocketbook!

If your pig frequently walks on hard surfaces, hoof trimming might never be a necessity.  Otherwise, you
should plan on having to trim hooves at least once a year.  Details on this
process can be found on the Hoof Trimming page.  At the same time, tusks also might need to be trimmed,especially on male pigs.  Female pigs might never need their tusks trimmed, as they are normally much smaller.

Generally, for the safety of the pig, this is a two-person job.  Obstetric wire is the easiest and safest way to accomplish this task, and can be purchased on-line or at some feed or pet supply stores.  While cutting, squirt the area with water to prevent friction-induced heat from building up.  Trim tusks until they just barely protrude out of the mouth.  Smooth edges with a dremel tool or sandpaper if necessary.

If you have a young teacup pig, begin working with him/her NOW to acclimate them to having their hooves trimmed while laying down for a belly rub.  However, if you have a micro pig who is unwilling to tolerate hoof/tusk trims without being restrained, see the pictures below for some ideas on how to restrain your pig in order to perform this
important maintenance.


  In these pics, the pig is cornered, then gripped just behind the front legs.  The
person then sits down, with the pig between her legs.  A similar technique
is shown below.


 

With a pig that is fairly docile, it can simply be rolled onto its back while laying down.  It can
then be straddled between the legs as shown below.  (Notice that she is
wearing earphones – these critters can be noisy!)


Prevention and Maintenance

A preventive maintenance regimen can be achieved by using a pour-on topical, an oral, or an injectable preparation designed to kill both internal and external parasites. Pour-Ons work best on pigs with a fairly heavy hair coatsince the medication needs the hair shaft to penetrate in the body.
Frequent close examination of the pig’s skin and ears should inform you
of the presence or absence of mange. If no signs of mange are evident,
periodic treatment according to your veterinarian’s recommendations, can
keep your pig mange free.

Spring and fall seem to be the two most common times of year when mange mites are prevalent.

However, depending on climate and immediate environment, infestation can occur any time of the year. I have found the following protocols to be
effective. Ivomec Pour-On for Cattle and Ivomec Injection for Cattle and
Swine are ivermectin-based drugs. Ivomec is the Merial Ltd. registered
trademark for ivermectin.


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