Photo Credit: @ticklepigandfriends
Mini pigs are very emotional animals and require a lot of attention. People who get a mini pig should be home most of the day to give their pig the attention they need. Leaving your mini pig indoors for too long can lead to some serious problems.
So how long can you leave a mini pig alone for? All pigs are different, but in general, you shouldn’t leave your mini pig alone for more than 4 hours long. Make sure to have a sectioned off area or a separate room for them to stay in while you are gone. Also, do not leave them alone very often.
This is not a clear-cut answer though. Some pigs cannot be left alone for more than an hour before they start destroying things, while others can be alone for over 12 hours. It depends on your pig’s personality (which I explain more on how to understand your pig’s personality later in this article). Continue reading to find out what you need to do before leaving your mini pig alone.
What to do before you leave your pig home alone
It’s important to implement these steps below because they will stop your pig from destroying your house.
Section off an area for your pig to stay while they are alone
Please do not let your pig roam your house freely! Although this may sound like the most humane thing to do, your pig might destroy the inside of your home when they are left alone. For example, my friend’s pig @sirkevanhamletbakonthefirst completely destroyed her couch as you can see in the image below. Her pig did this because my friend had to go to work for the first time in a while, and her pig was not used to being alone.
Instead of letting your pig roam around your house freely when they are left alone, get a pet pen, or only let them stay in a single room. For example, you can use a pen such as this one here I found on Amazon (that is surprisingly cheap) to section off an area for your pig. My friend @poppy.the.piggy uses a pen for her pig when she’s alone, and it looks like this.
Having an area like this is great because if your pig starts to get lonely, they won’t destroy all of your stuff. It should be noted though that it is unhealthy for your pig to be locked up in something like this for too long.
Make sure to give your pig stuff that will keep them entertained
As you can see in poppy’s pen above, she has a lot of stuff to keep her entertained. Put your pig’s favorite toys in there and also many blankets for them to sleep on. One thing that you can get to help keep your pig entertained is a snuffle mat. These will help relieve your pig’s rooting tendencies by hiding treats inside the mat.
You can check out my favorite rooting mat on Amazon by clicking here. This mat will last much longer than many of the cheaper ones also available on Amazon.
Consider getting another pig
Pigs are naturally social animals, so when they’re left alone, they become very sad. Having another pig will greatly raise their happiness especially when you are gone. Many organizations and breeders recommend that new pig owners should get two pigs for this exact reason.
This is not a requirement though. Having only one pig is still absolutely possible and you can even leave them alone. If you are the kind of person that needs to be away from your pig often, I highly recommend you get multiple pigs.
Make a pigpen or barn for your pig(s) to stay in while you’re gone
Not everyone has the luxury of being able to make a pigpen or barn on their land, but if you can, it would make parenting your pig much easier. This is obviously more of a farmer’s approach to raising pigs but theirs nothing wrong with that.
When your pig starts to feel lonely when you are gone, and they are inside a pigpen or barn, there is nothing for them to destroy. Giving them hay to eat and sleep on will help keep them entertained while you are away.
Get a “pig sitter” if you have to be away for too long
This is pretty self-explanatory, but there are plenty of people who are perfectly willing to take care of your pig while you are gone.
Get a camera to watch your pig
Most people won’t need this, but if you are very nervous about your pig being alone just get a camera. This camera here on Amazon allows you to connect to it from your smartphone and watch your pig from anywhere.
Test your pig’s personality before you leave them alone
Especially if your pig is extremely attached to you, they will not do well if left alone. If you want to see if your pig will do well, start putting them inside their separate cage or room for an hour or two. During this time go away for a little bit and come back to see if they were ok with you leaving.
If you are nervous about this, just don’t go very far. Maybe only over to the next room.
How to feed your pig while they are home alone
Besides mini pigs getting very destructive and lonely when you are away, you also need to worry about feeding them. Luckily thanks to technology, there’s such thing as an automatic pet feeder. Using one of these you can automatically feed your pig their pellets while you are gone.
There are many different brands of automatic feeders available, but this one here seems to be the best according to Amazon.
How will your pig go to the bathroom?
You should try to get your pig to go potty right before you leave them. You shouldn’t make them hold it in for more than 4 hours. If you have to be gone later than that, or you just want to be safe, consider getting a litter box. This one I found on Amazon here would work perfectly for a pig.
This is also much easier if you have a pigpen or barn because you can make an area for them to go potty outside.
Does leaving your pig alone hurt them in any way?
Your pig should be fine if you don’t leave them alone for too long but don’t be surprised if they look mad. Also, do not leave them alone very often because your pig will start to get depressed and overweight. Exercise is very important for mini pigs because of how quickly they can gain weight.
Can you have a full-time job and have a pet mini pig?
If you have a full-time job and you are leaving home for many hours every day, you will need someone to care for your pig while you are gone. Your pig will become obese and depressed if you leave them alone for that long and that often.