Welcome Oscar and Tippy to Doolittle Farm!
This beautiful brother and sister pair will be the newest residents of Doolittle Farm in June!
They are coming from Hog Haven Farm, a wonderful sanctuary near Denver, CO. Erin and Andrew, the directors of Hog Haven, are generous and warm-hearted, and extremely knowledgeable about pigs. We are happy to take two pigs from them, and open up two new spots at HHF!
(Oscar is left; Tippy above. Photo credit: Erin Brinkley-Burghardt)
We are doing some work at Doolittle so we can welcome Oscar and Tippy to our family, so stay tuned for updates.
This past spring we went for a visit to Hog Haven Farm, a pig rescue, and spent some time speaking with the Director, Erin Brinkley-Burgardt and her husband, Andrew. We began investigating ways to help with pigs, as the two rescues in Colorado are at or around capacity. They receive a lot of calls for pigs who need homes and try to take as many as they can, but there are always more that need to be helped. We want to help. Erin has taught us how to prepare for and care for pigs.
There are many misconceptions about pigs that people want to adopt as pets. From Erin…
There is bad information related to adult size of these creatures; breeders have coined the terms “micro mini,” “nano,” “pixie”, and “teacup” to refer to small sizes of miniature pigs. Miniature pigs are real, though the designation refers to potbellied pigs that are mini compared to their cousins on the farm–breeds that reach 600-1200+lbs at maturity. A “mini” pig will reach 70-250 lbs at maturity, and under poor information, many pig parents assume they stay under 50 lbs. This is false information, and leads to many surrenders of these animals. Only 2-5% of pet pigs stay in one home in their lifetime–this is a gigantic problem, and many of the rescues in the nation are at or over capacity. Potbellied pigs live to an average 20 years, and they are intelligent, compassionate creatures that form very close bonds to their human companions. This makes rescue even more challenging; pigs can develop severe depression or behavioral problems when bounced around too frequently.
Education and regulation on breeding is necessary to place these animals and stop the problem, but it’s a slow process. There are currently 2 rescues for pigs in Colorado; Hog Haven Farm in Deer Trail and Pigasus in Mack. Both rescues are overwhelmed; Pigasus has around 20 pigs, and Hog Haven has nearly 50 as of January 2017. Hog Haven Farm receives a minimum of 3 calls a week for surrenders.