Potty Training a Pig
Feb 28th 2012
In cold or rainy weather indoor pigs may not want to go outside to potty. If you choose to use an indoor potty box, select one with low sides or cut down an entrance. Pigs don’t like to step up and over some-thing to use the potty. The box must be big enough for the pig to turn around in. If the bottom of the box is slippery put a no slip mat in the bottom, under the litter.
Avoid using clay litter, as pigs may inhale it (causing pneumonia) or eat it (causing intestinal blockages), both which could be fatal. Pine shavings are inexpensive, old towels can be used, adult diapers or under-pads make good box liners too and are easy to wash or dispose of. Cedar is not recommended.
Pigs learn to potty in a particular spot. Choose the potty box location carefully because the pig may not want to change potty spots later. When a pig is very small, take him to the box every hour or at least every two hours when he is awake, as soon as he wakes up and right after he eats or drinks. If you are not home to closely supervise the pig, you can also confine the pig to a small area with its bed and potty box separated as much as possible. The pig will not use its bed as a potty box, so it will learn to use the litter box. Or, you can put some of the pig’s poop into the box, once the pig smells it; it should start to use the box.
Do not give the pig free, unsupervised run of the house until he is at least 6 months old. Pigs younger than that are prone to accidents!
If the accidents are not caught and corrected immediately, housebreaking will be more difficult. If a pig does something once, he remembers. If he does something twice, it’s a habit. If he does it three times, you may be out of luck! Close supervision and proper housebreaking early on will help avoid problems in the future. If you catch a pig making a mistake, take him to the litter box and let him finish pottying in the proper place, then praise him. Clean up the mess with a commercial deodorizer made for removing pet odors or vinegar and baking soda. Clean up is important to avoid future accidents in the same spot — pigs have strong noses and good memories!
If possible, put a heavy piece of furniture in that spot or a bath mat and the pig’s food dish and feed him there for a few days. You may want to add a ScratchnAll pad to the furniture to make it a happy place. www.scratchnall.com. Pigs do not eat and potty in the same places! After a week or so clean the spot again. Wait a few more days and when the pig is not looking sprinkle some food or a couple of treats in the area. The pig will think the treats sprout from the rug or floor and will not want to potty there again.