Animal Newsagency interviewed some of our customers recently about owning pet miniature pigs. Lisa, the owner of Biscuit, kindly shared her experience....
The Thomas family from Worcestershire did their research, and after two years of deciding whether a micro pig was right or them they brought home Biscuit this year.
Mum Lisa, 43 suffers from severe anaphylaxis, and her daughter Olivia, 13 is also allergic to fur. This means that they could not live with a dog or cat.
Together with electrician husband Mark, 40 and son Oscar, 7, the family began searching for a pet which would suit their needs and fill the dog-shaped hole in their lives.
Initially they adopted Senna the tortoise, and while a much-loved member of the family, you can’t really snuggle on the sofa with a tortoise in the same way as you can with a furry pet.
But then Lisa came across Kew Little Pigs, and learned that because pigs have hair not fur, they make brilliant pets for people with allergies.
Lisa, said: “We did a lot of research over a few years, at first we were in the process of moving house so it really wasn’t the right time, but then we moved to this property and it was time to get in touch and find out more.
“We had been following Kew Little Pigs on social media for about two years before we actually made an approach because we wanted to be sure that it was the right time, and that we could give our new pet the best life possible.”
Lisa contacted Kew Little Pigs, and learned that a litter had just been born. After a long chat with owner Olivia Mikhail, in order to establish whether their home was suitable, Lisa put down a deposit, and the family couldn’t wait for the arrival of baby Biscuit!
She said: “Kew Little Pigs were absolutely great, and the pig keeping course you have to do really set us up. You come away from it knowing exactly what is needed, everything from house training to how to arrange the outside space.”
Just before Biscuit was ready to be taken home Lisa surprised her children with a trip to visit her at the friendly Amersham farm.
She said: “I had told the kids we were going to the beach, but it was a surprise visit and when we pulled up at Kew Little Pigs to meet Biscuit they couldn’t believe it.
“The kids were so excited, and me and Mark were too, I’m so glad that we were given that opportunity to see her when she was still
with her mum.”
When Biscuit was eight weeks old she was ready to travel to Worcestershire, and Lisa set about getting everything ready for the new arrival.
She said: “It was an amazing feeling, we had her carry basket, puppy pads all ready. And to surprise Olivia and Oscar again I went to get her while they were at school.
“When they got home they came out onto the veranda and there she was, and Olivia just feel to her knees and cried, she picked Biscuit up and they hit it off straight away, it was such a wonderful moment.”
Upon arrival Biscuit wasted no time in settling in to her new pampered life, and within two days she was totally trained to use the puppy pad indoors.
Nowadays she only uses it in an emergency, and only for a wee when her family is out.
Biscuit has two food bowls which she eats from every day, and enjoys a range of vegetables, fruit and even flavoured ice water in the hot weather.
Her favourites are bananas, grapes, apples and courgettes, but the picky piggy steers clear of broccoli.
Like a dog, Biscuit has been trained to use a lead and harness, and even responds to the ‘spin’ command. When she is good she loves to be told ‘good girl’.
Once her walking licence arrives the family are looking forward to taking her out and about.
Lisa said: “She sleeps in our house at night on her dog bed, and she has blankets in it for rooting a nuzzling. At night time she knows when it’s time to settle down.
“We have a pool in the garden and she goes in for a swim! She has her own pool float that she likes to sit on too.
“All the things you get from having a dog we get from Biscuit, she gets excited when the kids come home from school, she is one of the family.
“She has brought so much love and joy into our lives.”
Biscuit is also a hit with the neighbours, and Lisa’s friends and family too: “People are amazed and we get so many questions, she is a local celebrity and I am known as the ‘pig lady’.
“We get all the little kids from our neighbourhood knocking on the door to ask if they can see her. I always tell people why we have a pet pig, and about my allergies because we want to spread the word.
“She is inquisitive, nosey, playful and gets the hump when she doesn’t get what she wants, what more could you ask for?”
Worcester News published the story - click here to read.