Mini Pig Surrender 2022 [what to Know Before Deciding]

Check this out before making a final decision.

The facts are:·   

  • There are only about 30 sanctuaries in the country for pigs. You can find them all by going to  and finding the pig placements listing. Of the 120 or so people on the list about 30 actually take any in; the rest do rescue, transportation, education etc.. Many others used to take in pigs but got overcrowded and stopped.
  • The sanctuaries are all full (some still try to handle emergencies from animal shelters or special cases when they can)
  • Your older pig has little chance of adoption. Everyone wants babies..
  • Your older pig, if not raised with another pig, has never known anything but you for family. When he is cut away from your family, he loses everything he knows. He will go into a grief period for several months that will be devastating… he won’t eat, he won’t get up, some even die from the grief. Imagine being taken away from everything you have ever known and finding yourself on the moon alone… that’s what it’s like for him. So be sure that you have to do this to him. We hear all kinds of reasons, divorce/moving/poor health/ grandchildren…none of these are insurmountable problems if you decide to put your commitment to the pig into the decision making instead of casting him off like an old shoe. He has been a friend for many years. Don’t abandon him in his last few years of life to what will most likely be a sad end.
  • If your reason is that “you can’t give him enough attention” what kind of attention do you think he will get at a sanctuary with 150 or more pigs? If you want to make his life better, get him another pig or a cat for a friend and he won’t need so much attention from you. Build a fence for your back yard, get him a nice dog house and a wading pool for summer and he will be fine. Pigs don’t need a lot of people time if they have their own kind.
  • If you are lucky enough to find someone who will take him, are you prepared to pay for his keep? It costs $300 a year for the average pig with no medical problems. If he is 7 years old, then you can expect someone is going to have to pay out about $1500 to $2400 for his care. Is that going to be you? Many people seem almost insulted that they are asked to pay for his keep. “Aren’t you a sanctuary??” they ask. “Yes, we are, and it costs $300 per pig per year to maintain the sanctuary.” It has to come from people – there is no “money tree” growing on any of our properties. We beg and grovel and sell lollipops and have bake sales, haul donated bakery goods, and do everything we can to keep the feed bills paid. We rarely qualify for any kind of grant monies because pigs simply aren’t a popular cause. So it has to come from people; people who want the services that a sanctuary provides. There is no other source for the money needed. Any of us who had retirement savings or private funds when we started have long since used it all for feed and vets and sold off most of our personal belongings to keep a roof over these piggies’ little heads!
  • What kind of health condition is the pig in? Have you kept his feet trimmed? His tusks cut? Is he neutered, or is she spayed? Are his shots up to date? If these things haven’t been done, they must be before he can be added to the sanctuary population or before anyone would adopt him. If your pig is a girl and not spayed and average size, 150 pounds or so, then spaying will cost anywhere from $200- $500, plus shots , hoof trimming etc. An unspayed female has a life expectancy of about 9 years, compared to a spayed girl at 12 to 15.
  • Do you have a way to safely transport your pig to a sanctuary that may be 500 to 1000 miles away? He has to be kept warm/cool and safe.  He can’t be hauled in a pickup truck bed or a UHaul trailer, since he needs heat or AC in any kind of extreme temps.  A van or SUV works well as long as its not parked where it’s too cold or hot during the trip.
  • Have you considered boarding him some place near where you live so that you can visit him? A pig who has been moved that gets regular visits from his former family usually does much better than one who is “dumped”. Some sanctuaries offer boarding as a means to bring in income and have facilities dedicated to boarding. Board typically runs about $50 per month but will vary in different areas.

We hope you will consider these things and maybe work out a plan to keep your pig. Often we who work in the “pig community” can help you with fencing or volunteer help, or other ways to keep your pig where he is at home with his family. Please understand, we do what we do for the pigs in distress, so we are trying to look after his best interests at all times. For us, it’s only about the pigs… and about the hundreds of pigs who will die, despite our best efforts.

Read these additional resources which will help you to make a decision about mini pig surrender.

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