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Sus scrofa scrofa.jpg
A domestic pig on an organic farm
in Switzerland
Conservation status
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Order: Artiodactyla
Family: Suidae
Genus: Sus
Species: Sus scrofa

Pigs are mammals in the genus Sus. They include the domestic pig and its ancestor, the common Eurasian wild boar (Sus scrofa), and other species. Pigs are in the Suidae family of even-toed ungulates.

Related, but outside the genus, are the babirusa and the warthog. Pigs, like all suids, are native to the Old World. Baby pigs are called piglets.[1] Pigs are omnivores and are very social and intelligent animals.[2]

Domestic pigs are eaten as food called pork or bacon. The Jewish and Muslim religions, and some Christian denominations, believe eating pork is wrong. Pig farmers take care that the animals do not get diseases or parasites which might harm humans.

A pet domestic pig laying down on a rug

Domestic pigs come in lots of different colors, shapes and sizes. They are usually pink, but little pigs kept as pets (pot-bellied pigs) are sometimes other colors. Pigs roll in mud to protect themselves from sunlight. Many people think that pigs are dirty and smell. In fact, they roll around in the mud to keep bugs and ticks away from their skin. This also helps to keep their skin moist and lower their body temperature on hot days. They are omnivores, which means they eat anything that comes in their way.

Pigs are very intelligent animals. They can be taught to dance, hunt for truffles, race, pull carts and sniff out landmines.[3] They can even be taught to play video games.[3]

Care[change | change source]

Pigs need a warm, clean area under a roof to sleep, and they should not be crowded. They need to be checked for sickness regularly. Stress can make them get sick with rabies more easily.

Pigs need lots of water. Over half their body weight is made up of water.[4] Pigs should be given all the feed they will eat, which is usually 4 to 5 pounds a day for adult pigs.[5] Corn is a good food for pigs, but they should also have protein supplements as well.

Where they are found[change | change source]

Pigs are often found on throughout the world living on farms and in the wild, and they are also popular pets. A new breed of micro pigs has become very popular but often piglets are mis-sold as micro pigs and then grow to be too big. Pigs are mass farmed to produce the best animal for meat. These meat farms are often overcrowded with pigs and conditions are really bad.

References[change | change source]

  1. "Piglet - Definition and More from the Free Merriam-Webster Dictionary". Merriam-webster.com. 31 August 2012. Retrieved 15 September 2013. 
  2. Angier, Natalie (10 November 2009). "Pigs Prove to Be Smart, if Not Vain". The New York Times. 
  3. 3.0 3.1 http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/qi/8912210/QI-Quite-interesting-facts-about-pigs.html The Telegraph, retrieved 05/12/2011.
  4. Pig Information, retrieved 15 Mar 2011.
  5. Getting Started with Pigs, retrieved 15 Mar 2011.