How do I know what size of a pig I am buying and How can I TRUST a breeder?
To me this is a very simple question to answer, as we have been in the market buying mini pigs ourselves and I believe we follow very responsible breeder practices. If you follow my lead here on what to look for in a great breeder, I believe you will be extremely happy for decades to come with your pet mini pig.
- First and foremost, a GREAT breeder will always have you sign a contract! In fact the most important part of our contract is, that in the unlikely event you can NO longer care for your mini pig, that they can NEVER be sold or given to a 3rd party!!!! 25%-40% of American pet pigs will be displaced, that is why we will NEVER let any pig we breed go to a 3rd party or rescue and we take full responsibility for ALL of our babies as EVERY breeder should!!! We get it in writing and screen our parents thoroughly to ensure the BEST possible homes. If you cannot care for your mini pigs throughout their life entirely, your breeder should absolutely care enough to help adopt out, place, or take back their own piglet. A GREAT breeder should NOT want to see their pigs help flood the problem of rescues and sanctuaries and should take an active role in placing pigs with no homes. We will even pay the travel costs if necessary for our pigs to be re-homed, that is a promise that every breeder and buyer should require! If rescues and sanctuaries would work with me, I would gladly help them place their pigs as well, as who better to help as I get so many calls and emails, however they will not let me help which seems contradictory to making sure these pigs are homed for life and would erase the stigma of good breeders sentencing pigs to a lif in these rescues. We have offered money for every piglet sold, and they will NOT take it from us. So if you are a rescue or sanctuary owner that would allow us to join in your efforts, we would gratefully help! If anybody obtains one of our mini pigs without a signed contract by us, we can and will sue them!
- A GREAT breeder will NOT have a "Buy it Now" feature on their website! In my opinion, this is a horrible breeding practice. Anybody can buy their pig and they have no idea who they are, how old they are, if they are stable, or a good fit for pig ownership! This is VERY bad especially considering they can live up to 15-20 years. In order to own one of our pigs we HAVE to know that you are in a stable home, old enough to care for a piglet, have the right housing and setting for a mini pig, and want to know you. If I can push a Paypal link to buy a pig, I would be VERY leary! I have kids and teenagers call me and would never sell my pigs to anybody that is too young without their parents being the primary owner. People who are in rental type situations will have a hard time getting new rentals and therefore we do not sell to anybody that could potentially have to give up their pigs to a landlords whim. People who work excessive hours and will keep their pigs locked up and/or alone all day everyday is not a good fit for a piggy, etc. etc. etc. Typically our pigs go to stable families, owners who have experience with other types of pets, and generally people who own their own homes and can ensure a decade or two of an amazingly awesome life!
- Ask your breeder how many pigs they have and if they are caged!? We only breed 4 females and would not go over 6 females in the future. I have spoken to many breeders that have up to 30-40 pigs. You can be rest assured that they can in NO way shape or form hand hold the amount of babies produced with that many pigs. If you have multiple litters all months of the years, it is more of a piggy mill type of a breeder and your piglet will not get the attention and affection necessary by the time it reaches your home. Since we only have 6 pigs including our boars, they are ALL our pets! The amount of devotion that goes into each of of pigs is unreal. If we had double, triple, or even worse quadruple the pigs, we would not be able to train, love, and give our own pigs a proper home, let alone their babies. The more pigs a breeder has, the less attention, affection, and training your piglet will get. Price should not be your number one factor. This is truly important as a piglets personality is greatly shaped in the first few weeks and months of life.
- A GREAT breeder will have plenty of pigtures, video, on an informative website, as well as great social media sources for open communication such as Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and the like. Social media is important so you can see up to date information, constant posts of videos of babies and parents, and other previous owners post pigtures and comments letting you know how committed the breeder is to their piggy parents, prospective parents, and their own pigs. Social media also shows that the pigs on their website are really theirs and that they are not just posting on picture of their breeders on their website from years previous when they where younger and smaller. You want to see your breeder interacting with their own pigs, showing them affection and training them. The website should have a plethora of information and the research should be done for you. If there is limited information on their website and social media, I would be concerned about their level of commitment to their business and the time they are willing to give their prospective parents and parents who have questions.
- A GREAT Breeder will spend as much time on the phone with you as needed prior to and after purchasing your pet mini pig. Our first breeder we worked with gave us NO information, had no blogs or information on their website, and was extremely difficult to get a-hold of after we obtained our pig. We where on our own to figure out how to train and care for our mini piglet. Luckily, we are obsessed with our pigs and with research, however I cannot assume everybody is like us, and it is important your are given all positive and negatives prior to owning a pig, and along the way will have questions that should be answered by experienced pig owners.
- A GREAT breeder will have references of past piglet owners on their website or upon request so that you can ensure they are great breeders and you are really getting what they promise. Who better to back the breeder then owners that have worked with them.
A few references to check out, and references within the references:
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WE HELP PLACE PIGS IN NEW HOMES! PLEASE INQUIRE ABOUT ADOPTING A PIGLET WITH NO HOME! IF YOU NEED TO PLACE YOUR PIG TO A NEW AND AMAZING FAMILY, WE CAN HELP! SANCTUARIES AND RESCUES WE'D LOVE TO HELP PLACE YOUR PIGS TOO! (with 25% or more American pigs being the #1 displaced animal we would LOVE to help!)
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