Grooming, medical & other costs
You need to make sure you understand what the financial commitment is likely to be. Of course this depends on the size of pig and its age. A small pig won’t cost as much to look after as one of the large farm breeds. Things you will need to take into account are (figures where given are all approx in 2020):
- Land rental or purchase (around half an acre per pig with minimum 2 pigs = about 1 acre minimum )
- Stock-proof fencing that needs to be well-maintained
- Shelter - purpose-built wooden shelters of the sort we recommend are about £300 (for e.g. Kunekunes) to £500 (for large pigs) new but you can build your own or repurpose a strong shed/summerhouse or use a stable
- Bale of straw for bedding at around £3 each plus top up and change twice a year = at least 5 bales per year
- 1-2 sacks of pig nuts per week £10 each - Fresh food to supplement the above (remember you can't feed food waste from your kitchen)
- Vet's bills, could be around £200 per year for a large pig, probably half for a small pig. Pigs can be especially prone to cutting or injuring themselves!
- Worming 2-3 times a year
- Vaccinations may be required
- Hoof trim by vet if required
- As pigs get older they are prone to arthritis and often need something like regular Metacam £70 for 100ml.
-Creating a wallow (mud pool) or using a paddling pool and keeping it topped up with water, if no access to natural water
- Transport costs, e.g. trailer, should you need to move your pig.
- Enrichment - ‘toys’ to help pigs display natural behaviours and stop them from getting bored and destructive (can be homemade, recycled, or buy eg. treat ball).
And remember pigs can live 10-30 yrs so it’s a long-term commitment.