General Summer Safety
As the days grow longer and the sun gets hotter, we all begin to feel the discomfort from the summer heat. This is especially true for our pigs. Here are some safety concerns for responsible potbellied pig owners.
• A pig who is outside has no way to dissipate the extra heat from her body except by submersing herself in water. Therefore, all pigs who are kept outside for an extended period of time should be provided a wading pool of time should be provided a wading pool of clean water. It is recommended that the water in this pool be changed frequently.
• A pig kept in the house should have their bed placed well away from drafts caused by air conditioning. Also, pigs who live under air conditioning will need a blanket or sheet to snuggle up with. Your pig’s outdoor area should have shade and shelter to provide her a place to rest comfortably.
• Never leave a pig in your vehicle. Heatstroke can occur in minutes. Heatstroke can lead to brain damage or death. Signs of heatstroke are excessive breathing with mouth open, rapid pulse, and fever. To cool your pig immediately stand her in cool water. Only cool from feet up. Do not pour water over your pig’s head or body. This may cause your pig’s head or body. This may cause your pig to go into shock. Seek immediate emergency veterinary assistance.
• Always make sure your pig has access to fresh water. Remember to avoid exercise with your pig on extremely hot days and completely refrain from physical activity when the sun’s heat is most intense.
Summer Health Tips
We all think we know our pigs better than anyone else, but it is important to remember most of us are not medical professionals. If you are unconcern of how to treat your pig’s medical needs or if you have any questions, you should contact your veterinarian immediately. Listed below is some important information to keep in mind with the arrival of summer:
• Your pig may be bitten by insects. If your pig is bitten or stung, remove the stinger and watch the site for an allergic reactions. If allergic reactions occur or if there have been multiple wasp, bee or mosquito bites, take your pig to the vet.
• Check your pig daily for fleas and ticks.
• Most lawn and garden products may be hazardous. Make sure that plants and fertilizers within your pig’s reach are not toxic. This includes the products you use on your lawn.
• Have your pig’s vaccinations updated, if necessary. Even pet pigs are susceptible to swine diseases.
• No matter how careful and responsible you may be, accidents can happen. Make sure Animal Poison Control and your vet’s phone numbers are close at hand and available to all family members. And, don’t forget the ASPCA National Animal Poison Control Center at (888) 426-4435 (a $50 fee may be charged to a credit card depending on the poisoning).
Summer Vacation And Outing Tips
Taking your pig on outings or vacations with you can be awarding way to spend time with your pet. However, as a responsible pig owner there are certain precautions you should take.
• Provide plenty of fresh water and shade for your pig. Also, you may wish to carry a water mister along to cool you pig down on hot summer days.
• If you have a pool to enjoy the summer with, make sure your pig knows how to get out of it. Should she get too hot, she may choose to jump into your pool to cool off.
• Potbellied pigs can sunburn easily. If your pig is not acclimated to the sun, you should apply a sun block to protect her from sunburn. This applies to both black and white pigs. Also, your pig should be provided a shady area on sunny days. Should your pig experience sunburn, you can treat her with a topical soothing agent, just as you would for yourself.
• Cool ocean water is tempting to your pig. Do not allow her to drink too much sea water. Salt in the water will make her sick.
• Not all beaches, parks and hotels permit pets. Make sure you are informed before you begin your outing or vacation.
• If you are unable to take your pig along on your outing or vacation, the best care you can provide for your pig, whether in your home or at a boarding facility, is by someone who is properly trained and is knowledgeable about potbellied pigs.
Pig & Pools
The majority of pigs can swim and love it. Here are some important tips for teaching your pig how to swim:
• Never throw your pig into water.
• Start in the shallow water and call your pig’s name. You can try to coax her in with a treat. Be sure to be close at hand.
• Swimming is a great for of exercise, but don’t let your pig over do it. She will be using new muscles and may tire.
• Be careful of strong tides that are hazardous for even the best swimmers.
• Never leave your pig unattended. Make sure she knows the way out of the water and can climb the pool steps with out problem. You should always be in position to help your pig get out of the water.
• The safest pools for a pig is a child’s wading pool. You can even cut the side out so she will not hurt her belly. They do make a soft side piggy pools too.