Our Pot-Bellied Pig

The Pot-bellied Pig is named that not because of a big stomach, but because they have a natural dip in their back that causes their stomach to hang no matter what size it is.  They were originally found in the wild in Vietnam.  They were hunted down there for their meat and got to populations low enough that they started outbreeding them with the American pigs, so a lot of the Pot-bellied pigs that you see now are actually a mix.

Lucy is a “certified miniature pig”, so she is not supposed to grow any more than 15 pounds.  Obviously nobody told her that, because she’s well over 115 pounds now.  But NOBODY should be telling ANYBODY that, because pot-bellied pigs that small don’t exist! The original intent for Lucy was to be a house pig and they bought her for their daughter specifically.  She was sleeping in the bed with the daughter and in the air conditioning all day every day until she got too big.  Where the family was located they weren’t allowed to have livestock in the yard, so Lucy made her way to us.

She does have eyes, and she can see (a lot of people ask), but she does have a bit of fat blind. This a common condition in overweight pigs where the fat of the brow blocks complete vision. She’s also on a diet right now, so she gets about half as much food as Angelina.  The goal is to get her to lose about 10-15 pounds of weight so her belly doesn’t drag as much when she walks.  
Okay, so what’s the deal with “Miniature Pigs”? When we hear miniature we think small, but size is relative to the original. So a pig that’s normally over 300 pounds being below 180 was deemed “miniature” (silly, we know). The original registered Miniature Pot-bellied Pigs were registered and pedigreed to guarantee offspring below 180lbs and under 24 inches tall. The bloodlines haven’t been well maintained since the 90s, so there’s almost no way to assure of a pedigreed registered mini pig. So was Lucy a “certified miniature pig”? Nope, not even close!

Let’s dive even deeper! The smallest pig species in the world is the Pygmy Hog, an endangered species endemic to India that typically grows between 15-21 pounds! So not only was Lucy going to break a world record, she was going to revive a certification program that hasn’t been used for 30 years! So the next time you hear “certified miniature pig”, think twice! Better yet, don’t think about it at all, because it does not exist! And certainly not at 15 pounds or less!