This little piggy stayed at home

PUBLISHED: 11:07 22 July 2011 | UPDATED: 19:44 20 February 2013

At a fraction of the size of a normal pig, micro pigs can make perfect pets, as Sarah Ford discovers

At a fraction of the size of a normal pig, micro pigs can make perfect pets, as Sarah Ford discovers

When we were Digging for Victory 70 years ago it would not have been unusual for folk to have livestock in their gardens. Today animal lovers are discovering the delights of keeping pigs, but what if you are restricted by lack of space? The answer could be to think small and introduce a little pig into your life.

Micro pigs are about the size of a tea cup when they are born and many owners keep them as house pets. They have been a hit with celebrities in recent years among them Victoria Beckham, who is said to have bought two for husband David. And actor Rupert Grint, who plays Ron Weasley in the Harry Potter films, bought two from Jane Croft, the founder of Little Pig Farm based in Cambridgeshire.

People love pigs due to their intelligence, easy care and, up until recently, it wasnt thought of to have them around as small pets, says Jane, whose pigs have appeared all over the worldwide media including The Paul OGrady Show, The One Show and the Today Show in the US.

Little Pig Farm has branches all over the UK and Will Adam, a property developer from Somerset, covers the South West.

Ive kept pigs for years, but always for the freezer, and know what wonderful animals they are, says Will, who lives in the village of North Curry near Taunton with his partner, Donna Richards, and their baby, Hector.
The whole village love them and they are a joy to care for and spend time with and our first litters are stunning.

Such is the appeal of these little pigs that I am joined on this visit by my son and mother who are both eager to see them. Were wearing our wellies and I manage to lose one of mine in the mud. Once Ive picked myself up from the ground, Will explains why he decided to breed micro pigs.

It all started when I moved here and decided I wanted a vegetable garden, explains Will.
But I suffer from a bad back and could not be bothered to dig so I got six Gloucester Old Spots and over the winter they dug the garden for me.
Wills brother told him about Little Pig Farm and since he became a regional breeder, Langport Veterinary Centre has been able to help Will with any queries.

By working together, all the branches of Little Pig Farm aim to have the best pet pigs in the UK. For example, if they think one of their pigs is a little on the large side, they will remove him or her from the breeding programme. Little Pig Farms do not breed from the runts and only healthy, strong, small pigs are in the breeding herd. All branches work to the same rules and code of practice to ensure that the sows are not over breeding and that all health and welfare issues are paramount.

They start off as lovely little piglets but, like a puppy, they grow, Will says.
I dont want any above the knee so will pull some out of the system if they get any larger. The idea is to get the stock right as people will not want large pigs. People often have them in the house or the garden its up to them. But they rather enjoy chewing up the land.
Will and Donna, a former model, were both born in Somerset and while their careers took them to London the couple have now returned to their roots. Wills pigs are very much part of the community too. Not only do neighbours help out from time to time, but some of the females are named after people in the village. One of the boars is called Roger Moore.
We have kept chickens, ducks and lambs in the past, and with the pigs it has been about learning as we go, asking questions and reading books, says Will, who loves being outside looking after his pigs.

Micro pigs are very friendly animals and you get very attached to them. They tend to chew your wellies and roll on their back for cuddles! They will let you rub their belly all day.

For further details contact
Will Adam on 01823 491412

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