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Piglet Rearing

Pigs are intelligent, inquisitive, & social animals. If you are thinking of getting a piglet as a pet, there are several things you should consider first.


Ideally the piglet should be fed a sow’s milk replacer. Alternatively goat (kid) milk replacer can be used. If neither are readily available, use condensed milk watered down to 33% to start with:

  • 1/3rd condensed milk
  • 2/3rds water

Cow’s milk is difficult for a newborn piglet to digest, but can be used after a few days if necessary.
After a few days the piglet should learn to drink from a small bowl. The piglet will probably need to be fed approximately 10-20ml every 3-4 hours for the first several days and then 80-100ml 3-4x per day until weaning.

Take care not to overfeed.

A creep (grower) feed e.g. NRM Little Pig pellets should be introduced early so it is eating this well by weaning at about 7-8 weeks.

Do not feed anything you wouldn’t eat including uncooked meat.

Housing Requirements

Use a heat lamp or pad if very young (orphan). The ideal temp is 27-30C°.

Ensure the floor is dry and free of draughts. If the piglet is outside it will need shelter (a house) and in the summer water to keep cool/wallow in.

Fencing needs to be secure or use an electric fence 15-30cm off the ground.

Vaccination and Drenching

Vaccinate at 6 weeks (or weaning) and repeat in 4 weeks.

Drench with Dectomax at 3 months old.

If you have any concerns about your piglets health, please don’t hesitate to contact your local North Canterbury Vets Clinic. We are happy to give advice over the phone on whether the animal requires treatment.


Reproduced with permission thanks to Franklin Vets, Papakura

Our Clinics & Hours

North Canterbury Veterinary Clinics operates four clinics throughout the Hurunui region.