Raising pigs on the Knucklehead Ranch. Last year my friend Kristi suggested that we raise pigs. Of course, I said fine. In March 2016, Kristi brought two eight weeks old female piglets, one Hampshire and one Yorkshire, to the Knucklehead Ranch. They were very cute and very curious.
Did you know that pigs bite? Well, let me tell you they do. They escaped from the pen we made so easily. It’s sort of a theme at my place for critters to outsmart me when it comes to keeping them contained. You’d think they were being set on fire when you catch them. Noisy critters.
The pigs were housed with the goats and chickens. For the most part, they all got along well. Pigs are very smart animals. Every day I’d fill up the water buckets, and every day they would knock them over. The pigs ate regular swine feed, but they also ate all the goat and chicken feed. The pigs liked to eat grass, weeds, and other plants. My pumpkin plants for example.
Another friend wanted me to raise a pig for him, so I added one more male Yorkshire. Now I had three pigs, five goats, five chickens, two English bulldogs, and a Jack Russell Terrier. Such a fun bunch of animals. I named the pigs even though I knew that they would later become the ham. I called them Applesauce, Porkchop, and Edgar.
The pigs needed to be kept cool during the summer. I made many, many mud puddles for those pigs. They are brilliant at digging holes. The pigs use their snout to dig into the dirt and make holes. Amazing, how they re-landscaped the pasture. At night they slept side by side in the barn with the goats.
My favorite pig was Porkchop. She was very friendly and let me scratch her head and ears. Porkchop always came to me when I went out to feed. She was the black, white and pink pig.
Kristi kept telling me to feed them more food. Our goal was to get them to at least 250 pounds before September. Oh my gosh they ate a lot of feed. My neighbor said, “you know it doesn’t pay to raise pigs”. I knew that ahead of getting them, but I wanted to raise pigs. So I did!
Next time I will tell you about Edgar and his mudball.