1. The normal pig
PET pigs are related to the Vietnamese potbellied pig, but many are also crossbred with commercial breeds such as the Large White, which can result in interesting body colour combinations. Some owners keep rare breeds, which helps to preserve genetic diversity. All pet pigs are the same species as commercial pigs – Sus scrofa – and this also includes the European wild boar. Management of pet pigs is subtly different from that of commercial pigs, and this should be borne in mind when dealing with these animals. This article describes how to handle and examine the pet pig, highlighting the normal parameters for these animals, and outlines the measures that can be implemented to prevent disease. An article in the next issue will discuss problems commonly encountered in pet pigs.
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