Baby hoof steps toward harness training The Hopester.

Since Hope and her sister JoJo came to live with us, we’ve noticed that the little ones run into the pasture gleefully and Hope and JoJo stay within a very short distance from the gate. We’d love to get these girls to walk a bit more, so we hope having them be comfortable on a harness and lead might encourage them to take farther walks in the pasture. (This all still might be a pipe dream.) Anyway, we’ve been getting Hope used to wearing a harness for about the past month, very slowly and deliberately. And we just put a lead on her and she didn’t go completely berserk like the little ones did when we were training them. Ah, food is a great motivator. We’ll keep you updated on her progress!

Hope and JoJo Arrive!

Some exciting Doolittle news: Hope and JoJo, two female potbelly pigs, have come to live with our Doolittle Farm family. Currently, they are separated from Tiptoe and Oscar, until they can get used to each other and feel comfortable. Hope and JoJo are understandably a little nervous and sticking to themselves. We know they will love their new home in time.

Hope getting comfortable. Pretty in Pink.

JoJo giving us her pretty smile

These girls were rescued from a miserable situation and came to live at Hog Haven Farm.  Hope received needed medical care and they both have been tended to with love and kindness for the past year. 

We’re going to try to help Hope lose a bit of weight. But please note these girls are NORMAL size potbelly bigs, at 175 and 200 pounds. Tip and Oscar are normal too, but on the small size. You may be sick of hearing this, but there’s NO SUCH THING as a micro-pig or a teacup pig. So-called “teacup” pigs are baby pigs, or starved and malnourished pigs. This is a highly unethical marketing practice, overwhelming rescues when their parents find they get “too big” and resulting in heartbreak for these poor pigs.

We love every inch and pound of Hope and JoJo, and we’ll update you as they become more comfortable with us and integrated with Tip and Oscar. We’re hoping they will welcome them with open hooves.

We are delighted for them to join our family. Come visit and welcome them yourselves! 

First Breakfast at Doolittle

This is the position Hope and JoJo have been in every time we’ve gone to visit, except for JoJo’s face in the food bowl.

Tiptoe says, don’t forget about me and Oscar! 

Pan and Loki are no longer the newest kids on the block: yes, they are this adorable!

 

 

 

Were you wondering what happened when Pan and Loki met ‘lil Zeus and Hermes?

Well, as you know, our new goats and our old goats were socializing and kissing through the fence for a week.  Today, we mixed them and…surprise, sweet, loving Hermes decided he was one of the dominant goats! He picked on poor Pan for a while and then tussled with Loki. ‘lil Zeus butted heads with Pan and Loki, as did Hermes (who apparently doesn’t know he doesn’t have horns and luckily didn’t lose an eye.)

Tonight everyone is settling in together and we’ll see how they do tomorrow. We hope you enjoy these photos of their first time sorting out their hierarchy:

‘Lil Zeus and Loki go at it

Pan! Will you please save me from Hermes and Zeus?

Loki takes on Zeus and Hermes

Hermes swinging a leg over Loki

Loki and ‘lil Zeus

Hermes ears were a-flying!

 

Meet the new residents of Doolittle: Pan and Loki!

We are excited to share that we welcomed two new residents to Doolittle Farm last night, Pan and Loki. They are Lamancha goats.  Lamancha goats, bred primarily as dairy goats, have a distinctive appearance with their very short ears. They have a calm and personable temperament; they are very sweet and friendly. We’re not mixing them yet with the rest of the herd so that everyone can first get to know each other through the fence. Our goats, Hermes and ‘lil Zeus, went right up to them and were socializing with them, and kissing each other through the fence.  Indeed these are social animals!

This is Pan. He’s a butterscotch color.

This is Loki with some stripe-y markings, and Pan again, below, eating hay.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

May I kiss your horn?

Hermes welcomed the goats warmly.

 

 

 

Kissing goats.       

 

‘lil Zeus is more of a people-goat, so he hung out with Aunt Ilene.

 

Some onlookers.

First Snow of 2018: Winter Wonderland at Doolittle Farm

First big snow of the season! The pigs were warm and cozy in their bedroom, the horses were looking handsome and bundled up, and everyone else seemed to be enjoying the winter wonderland!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Can you find Tiptoe in the straw?

The horses were ready!

Sweet Dee enjoying some hay in her heavy winter coat.

Hermes and ‘lil Zeus

 

The alpacas chowing down, with S’more posing for the camera.

Oscar, earlier this week on a sunny day. But I love this photo of him!

Tiptoe and Oscar make their new bed!

After we received some generous donations of blankets, Tiptoe and Oscar removed the shards of their previous blankets and enthusiastically began rooting their new blanket and burying themselves in straw!

 

Redecorating the bedroom!

Tiptoe carries out the old blanket pieces.

Tiptoe moving things around….         Now they’re getting busy!

Oscar digs in

Tiptoe is exhausted and ready for a belly rub.

 

Winter is here and the animals are ready!

Here’s an update on the animals of Doolittle Farm! They are staying warm, the goats are eating a Christmas tree, the pigs are learning how to walk on a leash (the alpacas are already great on a leash), and Mr. Darcy is sweet as ever! Please enjoy these photos!

Sweet Dee (llama on the left; with alpacas Alice, Elton and S’more)

S’more, Elton and Keith on a walk

 

This is the pig’s bed pod. They shredded their blankets and built their bed like otters making a dam!

Oscar practicing leash training.

 

Beautiful Tiptoe.

   

Zeus and Hermes chowing down on a Christmas tree.

Darling Mr. Darcy…he’s so mellow, he’s practically asleep!

  Celery anyone?

Tiptoe and Oscar sharing secrets.

 

Oscar is Blowing his Coat!

Every day we learn something new from our animals!

We were out feeding the pigs the other day and noticed that Oscar has a large swath of hairless skin on him. Tippy can be somewhat domineering and aggressive when it comes to food, so at first we thought that perhaps she had done something to him. But as we felt Oscar’s coat we found that his hair was coming off in our hands! All we had to do was find a spot anywhere on his body and if we took the hair in our fingers, it all easily came out.

We, of course, freaked out. Oscar seemed healthy and happy, though he had been scratching himself a lot on our shoes, some tree branches in the lot, and pretty much everywhere. So we ran and asked our friends at Hog Haven Farm what could be going on.

It is called “coat blowing”, and happens once or twice a year. The pigs will shed their coats and lose all or most of their hair, ending up looking like a miniature hippopotamus. It grows back almost immediately, but in the meantime, it can be very itchy and uncomfortable for the poor pig. So, as Oscar has been losing his coat, we’ve been brushing him several times a day. Here’s a short video of Oscar and Tiptoe. 

 

If you’d like to learn more about pot-bellied pigs’ coat blowing, you can read more here: http://americanminipigassociation.com/educational/blowing-coat-mini-pig-shedding/