My Mini Pet Pig . . . and Pals!

What is life like with a mini pig and baby?

Life with a mini pig and baby.

We got a pet pig almost five years ago because I’m a crazy animal person and because life at that point had become…easy. Settle in and read how life has changed.

Many people ask me what it’s like to have a pet pig. If I don’t refer them to one of the first posts on this website to understand what having a pet pig entails (you may want to cover your ears), I sum it up for them in one word: challenging.

Long ago are the days of a sweet snorting baby piglet, too adorable for words (albeit too loud for ears), weighing just two pounds. Some of you may remember the most popular video we ever posted: Cocco running and squealing and then giving me piggy kisses, something that I was so proud to have earned. Or this one, even cuter in my opinion, of our baby pig licking frozen yogurt.

However, the truth is, having a mini pig is draining. I was not aware of what I was getting my family into since there were not many mini pig resources available other than breeders’ websites, which of course offer very biased information. So I started this website. I wanted to inform others firsthand what it is like to have a pet mini pig, the good and the bad.

In short, I could never raise a mini pig again, at least with young kids in the house. The amount of patience and persistence required to help a mini pig adjust to a new home and family is overwhelming. In my opinion, raising a puppy is a piece of cake compared to a mini pig. The squeals, screams really, were so bad I remember putting earplugs in just to be able to hold my piglet. I remember the satisfaction of finally holding my baby piglet after many struggles. And I remember the anxiety of having to walk five feet after successfully holding my baby piglet to go put him back down.

Having a piglet is much like having a human baby. And when your piglet is not a piglet anymore but a full grown four and a half year old pig, you’re left with a perpetual toddler. One that you need to find a lot of sunlight and warmth for to deter his habitual hunts for food scraps.

So, what is life like with a mini pig – aka pet toddler – and a human baby?

There is no better word than chaos.

Aside from the fact that we have baby gates up all over our house, not for our baby but for our pig, it is a constant shuffle of baby feet and tip tapping hooves. We cannot let Cocco in certain rooms anymore because he has had “intentional accidents” and once a pig has an accident, intentional or not, it’s almost impossible to stop them from going back there. We’ve replaced carpets, blockaded off sections of hardwood and drilled holes in the wall to prevent these accidents from reoccurring. We have had to change more in our house for our pig than for any other reason.

The gates, however, are now posing a problem for our mobile 14 month old baby that wants in when he wants in and wants out when he wants out.

This 14 month old is also often carrying around a yummy baby snack. And even if he’s not carrying around a snack the pig still has to make sure he doesn’t have any leftovers to lick off his face.

While Cocco has never snapped at or tried to bite our baby, he has definitely “tasted” his fingers, even when there was nothing in them. We are working with Cocco on gentle eating, meaning he takes food from our hands without using his teeth, and he has been doing a great job. But a pig is a pig. And when a pig smells food, lessons are quickly forgotten.

This past year has been tough. It’s a juggle between spending enough time with everyone, teaching a pig to be gentle with a baby and a baby to be respectful of a pig. Our baby is fascinated by the pets and often does “nice” to Cocco and Cocco is a champ and just snorts back. But at the end of the day, with his tusks and all, I cannot fully trust that Cocco wouldn’t eventually have enough of the baby love and turn and react. I am constantly on watch and having to open and close gates nonstop so the pig can’t get in and the baby can get out.

With all that said, I am so grateful to be raising my baby to love and appreciate animals of different species. I couldn’t imagine not having a pet pig, despite all the challenges he has thrown our way. Cocco is a part of this family and I am proud that my kids get to experience a pet as unique as a mini pig. I would encourage anyone wanting a mini pig to do your research, ask people with personal experience and not just mini pig breeders, and think long and hard about how much a mini pig changes your day to day life.

I don’t personally know of anyone that loves animals as much as I do, except my daughter. I wish I did know more. But I am crazy about animals. And for anyone that tells me they wish they had a pet pig, I am quick to tell them they probably aren’t crazy enough to do so. Then again, sometimes a little less crazy might be…easy.

This post has been a long time coming! I have had so many people question what it’s like to have a pet pig and a baby and I wanted to update so people are aware and prepared if that’s the path they plan to take. I also wanted to fill my readers in on life with three kids, a mini pig, dog and cat.

I have to give a shout out to my long standing partner, I have made all these collages and edited the photos with Fotor. If you haven’t tried it, I definitely recommend the free photo editing app if you are as busy as I am and want to make a quick collage or edit a photo on your phone.

Now, off to open and close another baby gate!

~ Katie, an ever busy mom of six

27 thoughts on “What is life like with a mini pig and baby?

  1. easyweimaraner

    It’s so great to hear from you…. and I love your way of life… it’s so great that your kids have the chance to grow up with animals… Hugs to you and a special big hug to Cocco

  2. Anonymous

    Great article! Your story tells it all. Unfortunately, people do not know how difficult at times it can be having a pet pig. This is why there are so many abandoned pigs. Just look at the pig rescues. People spend a lot of money, for what they believe is going to be a mini pig. As time goes by their mini pig is l00 lbs. plus, if they are lucky.
    Our pig is 3 years old now, about 50 lbs. He was purchased from a reputable breeder (licensed with the state,) 8 weeks, 3 lbs. We did our homework, Tex is the size we expected, his parents were 50-60 lbs. We love him. At times he can be difficult. My husband says he has “cat attitude.” It’s his way, when he wants to be friendly or not. Very vocal. We have to keep him in check always. When we brought him home we gave him a designated space, just for him. Our laundry room is his room only. He has a large crate with lots of blankets, his water bowl, toys and litter box. We put up a child gate with a cut out, so he can go in and out as he pleases (we have 5 other pets) so this is his space only. Works out great! In the winter he uses his litter box when the weather here in Ct. is bad, nice weather he rarely uses it. Makes life easier, no accidents. Pigs need boundaries. We are the boss, which we have to remind him from time to time. Tex is a full time job. We love him and he is in his forever home. Would we ever get another pig, probably not.

    1. minipig Post author

      So so true! They are definitely a full time job. It sounds like you have a great setup for him. Cocco only has accidents if he is trying to make a point (left in his room at a time he should have free reign, food a little later than usual, etc). It can be frustrating but pigs do give back so much. It’s just a lot of work and like you said, probably one pig for us too!

  3. Two French Bulldogs

    We were wondering what was going on over there. Welcome back. You sure made us think. BOL
    Lily & Edward

  4. speedyrabbit

    In some respects its a bit like having a rabbit,except without the noise.Speedy has the odd accident too but normally he doesn’t do it again but he is a chewer….but that is what buns do they Chew but they are forever like a toddler too.
    It’s great to hear from you on your blog,its been such a while.And to hear about your growing family is wonderful,xx Rachel and Speedy

  5. Cupcake

    Great update! Coco is looking as gorgeous as ever, and I love the baby. I wish I could taste his fingers, too! Babies are delicious.

    Love and licks,

  6. The Island Cats

    So nice to hear from you! We can only imagine what it’s like to have a mini pig and a baby. But we love that you are teaching your children how to respect animals…and teaching Coco how to respect humans. Something tells us the latter is the more difficult struggle. 🙂

  7. 25castleson25clouds (@25cson25cs)

    What a fab post, and so lovely to read. I feel the same about some of Poppy’s mischief and that’s without the baby to juggle! The way she has destroyed the carpet in my front room, and the times she has pulled the wallpaper off the wall… I keep having to take a deep breath and remember it’s only materialistic.

    You are inspirational for dealing with so much, and putting up with it. The fact with everything that is going on you are taking time to teach Coco – I just want to give you a massive thank you hug. You are aces!!

    1. minipig Post author

      Thank you so much. It sure is a lesson in patience! The carpet is the hardest, isn’t it? Having to replace it is so frustrating and the day to day life. Even without the baby the gates would be up and we always have to check our backs to make sure it has been pig-preventable! Thanks so much for your kind words.

  8. Brian

    Oh my, seriously we were just thinking about you the other night and here you are! If I’d know you’d post I would have though of you sooner. We’ve been missing you too.

  9. Renee Adams

    How nice to hear from you!! I was hoping everyone was O.K! Congratulations on your new baby! My mini pig, Daisy is now 3 years old. She has had to move 3 times in her short life. The circumstances were different with each home we were in. I did not even attempt to let her in with carpet in the house. She has been outside for over 1 year now, and she is fine. I would like to have another mini-pig for company for her. I take her out for walks in the yard (3 acres). I do not have a fence (she has a very large pen area that is fenced, with an igloo). I have hand fed her since she was a baby, so she does not bite. She loves to run and explore and she has freedom because she comes when I call her. I hope to train her more because she loves the stimulation. I respect her needs to have freedom outside, but having her inside for more than a short time, effects my needs to keep my home under control with the rest of the family and pets. I also love animals very much (I even put spiders outside when they come inside, instead of squishing them). With Cocolino growing tusks, I would be leary of him being inside with the baby. I love that you are posting all of this because it is not all the glamour that is marketed. Once I have adopted a pet, it is forever. Thanks for your honesty about how it really is, no matter how much we love them, things are always changing, and it is good to keep us up on our toes!!

    1. minipig Post author

      So good to hear from you and hear your experience. Daisy is very lucky to have found you. It sounds like you really have figured out how to make having a pig work for you. It is so tough. That’s wonderful that you would like to add another pig. Adding one can be tough since they need to sort out their dominance but if you are determined to do it, I think it would be so nice for Daisy. Having a pig outside would probably make life easier for us but I just can’t imagine doing it now after all this time and we have a backyard fox that is very respectful of our space but not sure that fox wouldn’t be tempted with a small pig nearby! Thanks so much for your comment and give Daisy a little piggy kiss from Cocco!

  10. Charlene Burgess

    Well thank you for the honest and wonderful story and advise. I loved walking in your shoes for a while through the story. You’re not only a good pic Mommy you’re a good people mommy and a wonderful storyteller. Maybe you should write a book about your Piggly Wigglyou and family life with humans.
    From pinky Charlene Burgess