At one point or another, we’ve all begged our parents for a pet. Usually, a dog, cat, hamster, guinea pig…something small and fast.
When thinking about adopting a new pet, many people go the fish, snake or even frog route.
But have you ever considered a pet pig?
One day, Jennifer D. Cangy of Lincoln Park agreed to foster a piglet for a few days. He has since become an important part of the DeCangi family, which also includes two dogs and two young children.
Can you keep a pet pig in New Jersey?
Tillman, 2, is a Juliana and Pot Belly pig mix.
When Tillman was taken by De Cangy. NJ Exoticsit was just supposed to be a visit.
However, everyone quickly falls in love with him and wants to extend their stay… until they find out that pigs are illegal in Lincoln Park. So, determined to keep Tillman, DeCangi began the process of changing the town’s zoning laws.
“A lot of cities don’t allow them, it’s very hard to find a city that does,” DeCangi said.
A few months later Tillman was legally allowed to maintain his residence in the DeCangi household, becoming the first legal pig in Lincoln Park.
If you are interested in getting a pet pig, you should first check your city’s zoning laws. Every city, county and state is different and has different rules. Some municipalities classify pigs as livestock, prohibiting them from residential areas, and some consider them pets.
If your city’s zoning laws allow pet pigs, you’ll usually need to get a permit and register them just like you would a cat or dog.
Call your city to learn more about local regulations.
The life of pig parents
According to DeCangi, Tillman has a distinct personality and, while she loves him, owning a pig is no easy task.
He said that having a pig is like mixing a dog and a cat into one animal. “They are intelligent and have a dog-like demeanor. They love to sit on your lap and be petted. They can jump on the bed or couch with no problem. They are stubborn and a bit like a cat. There are also CCs.”
Some advice DeCangi has for aspiring pig owners:
- Do your research to make sure they are legal in your city.
- Make sure there is a doctor nearby. There aren’t a lot of pig weights, so it’s a hard thing to find.
- Pig personalities are completely unpredictable, so you never know what you might find. Some pigs can be destructive, and some are calm.
- They eat everything, so you have to constantly be aware of what’s around. There are no manners when it comes to pigs.
- Finally, you have to be ready to be the boss and show complete dominance over the animal. You are encouraged to move the pig around and even get on their nerves a little to show them that you are the top pig in the house.
All in all, DeCangi is happy with her decision to parent a pig, though Tillman has no problem sitting on her couch and eating popcorn out of her bowl like a pig.
“They’re a really good pet,” DeCangi said. “I’ve always wanted a pig, but I didn’t expect it to happen when it did. He’s a special guy!”
Don’t be fooled by the teacup pig trend.
The trend of “teacup pigs” has been making the rounds on the internet for years. According to beat upa potbellied pig is either a potbellied pig that is severely malnourished or simply falsely advertised as being a “mini” pig.
Although they may be small and cute for a portion of their lives, these pigs will not stay small. In fact, they can be over 100 pounds.
Another pet pig named Piggie Smalls was spotted walking down the street with her owner in New Milford this month.
The owner of Piggie Smalls said the breeder who got them the pig told them he was going to be small, but they were wrong about that, and he is definitely not small.
“There’s no such thing as a cup of tea, that’s a lie,” said de Changi. “You’re going to make the pig think it’s a teacup and it’s going to turn out bigger than the St. Bernard that lives in your house.”
While for many of them there is no regular or current census. 72.7 million Pigs and pigs are kept as pets in the United States. Older studies from The Ohio State University Estimates range between 250,000 and 1 million.
At the time the study was conducted, the researchers also found that there were thousands of requests to hand over pigs to humane organizations and slaughterhouses over an 18-month period in seven states.
Study co-author Linda Lord said: “I don’t think there’s any question that there’s going to be a problem with unwanted pigs in the US. Unfortunately, many people who get potbellied pigs as pets, Not prepared. Because they don’t know how big they can get or how to deal with them.”
So, if your city allows it and you’re considering adopting a pig, make sure you do your research. A teacup will turn into a teapot and, without proper care and attention, can be a really difficult pet to care for.
For more information on any pig, check American Mini Pig Associationwhose mission is “pig education, advocacy, conservation, improving breeding practices, as well as encouraging responsible pig ownership.”