Sunday, August 29, 2010

Let's get a pig!

For the longest time I wanted to add a pig to our farm but my husband kept saying "we have enough and pigs get so big." He was right, they do get big but surely there are smaller pigs out there.  I had thought about the potbellied pigs and read a lot about them online. They were the big craze in the 90s, and many have ended up in rescues (if they were lucky enough).  I know potbellied pigs root in the dirt, as most pigs do, and that worried me a bit.  Well, while we were at the beach last August, we bought a chicken magazine.  As I was browsing,  I saw this ad for a kunekune pig. The ad said, "small, people friendly, and grazing pigs." Grazing pigs, now that was interesting. I immediately googled it to learn more. I found out it was a smaller pig variety that originated in New Zealand. They had big personalities and loved people, plus they would graze on a pasture as opposed to rooting in the dirt. I was hooked.

I called the folks who ran the ad and learned more. Once I shared the news with Richie, he was in. We sent in our deposit on their next litter.  On December 27th, we got an exciting e-mail.  A new litter had arrived and our gilt (baby girl piglet) was one of them.  They sent us pictures and we chose a beautiful black and white spotted with two wattles (little pouches that hang down from each side of their jaw).  They asked us if we wanted to bottle feed her. Hmm, bottle feed her?  Ok, that sounds like a great idea.  I had never had children so what a great opportunity.  "Yes, we want to bottle feed". Two weeks later, the pig was ours.

Over the course of two weeks, Richie and I batted around names. I wanted to name her Petunia but he thought that didn't suit a black and white pig.  My friend Jan Posey suggested we name her Posie (after her).  Richie then suggested Pansy.  Ok, Pansy sounds like a great name, how about Pansy Posie?  The husband agreed so Pansy Posie it is.

The big day came and I drove to Virginia to meet her.  I couldn't believe how adorable and tiny she was. The pig's owner explained all the vaccinations and feeding routine to me and gave me a bottle with a bag of formula. I quickly found out how the old phrase "you eat like a pig" came to be.  Pansy would grunt when she was hungry and that was often. We kept her in the house for about three months.  My husband and I were doing round the clock feedings with her.  I was really getting that newborn experience.  She would play and take naps with me and loved to get into the dog food bowl anytime she was in the kitchen.  Shew grew quickly.

In the spring, we built her a little house and her very own fenced in pasture.  This little baby we had bottle fed and slept with was now going outside to her own little house? It was like going from infant to college in a short peroid of time.  Our baby had grown up on us.  Richie took her out and introduced her to the new place.  She liked it and immediately went in to her house.  We didn't sleep much that night for fear of something happening to her but she has been happily residing there for five months.

We can't imagine our farm without kunekunes and have decided we want to have more. We are working on that now and have a mail ordered boar piglet coming from California.  We will share many more stories about our pigs and couldn't love more our adorable little baby piglet called Pansy Posie.   


Flat Creek Farm said...

Ohhh nooo! I can't take the piggy cuteness! I made a vow - no more additions. But wow, is your little Pansy Posie adorable. So nice to meet you, and find your wonderful blog. Love the header too.. and you have donkeys also?! Where have I been? I can't wait to read more! -Tammy

Verde Farm said...

Tammy, you are so sweet! Thank you so much for checking us out. I was showing your blog to my husband and we just felt like it was home. We are just getting started here at Verde. I'm so excited to connect with folks who share our interests ---Amy

Farm Girl said...

I have never heard of them but oh my gosh how cute. I was looking at your side bar and I must admit to having peacock envy. :) My husband says emphatically NO on peacocks so I will enjoy your pictures. I even love the name of your sweet pansy.
So glad you stopped by and you liked my chicken story. I do enjoy them so much. Your guineas are gorgeous too,
You do have a very pretty site.
Thanks for stopping by and I look forward to you posts. Welcome to blogland. :)

Verde Farm said...

Farm Girl, thank you so much for checking out our site. I am so excited to find so many great people out there that love the things we do. We have really been thinking we are on a different planet at times and we probably are but at least we share it with other inhabitants.

I will tell you, the peafowl came in early April and we weren't sure what to expect but they are really no trouble at all. They do fine with all our other critters and we just love watching them. I am really hoping our peahen can hatch some babies next year but time will tell.

Look forward to exchanging ideas and stories with you!

The Chicken Keepers said...

Thanks for visiting the blog! Your blog is so cute! I will become a follower and add you to my blog roll.

The Chicken Keepers

Verde Farm said...

Oh Thank you Chicken Keepers!! I added you to mine as well. So happy to share with you and learn from you!
Amy at Verde Farm

Holly said...

Hi Amy! Thanks for stopping by my blog AND leaving a comment...extra special!
How exciting, the life you are carving out for yourself. Something I always wanted to do, but I'm happy with the 2 acres...better than town! and my hubby likes it too.
So...did you use the barn for animals? (I'm assuming yes) or did you do the man cave? We want to make a "party" shop with our shop. Basketball, air hockey, foosball..and for me...a summer kitchen! We'll see!!!!

Look forward to reading more!

Razzberry Corner said...

Hello Amy! I love your farm! Your life sounds very familiar - it's my life, too! We have the old house and are remodeling, and we too are getting the animals. We have quite a few Bantam chickens. No ducks yet, but I'm thinking about them... How many Guineas do you have?

I'm looking forward to reading more about your farm!

~Lynn at Razzberry Corner

Johanna said...

Uh oh! I always wanted a pig, and kunekune might just be the thing for Busy Solitude Farm, too!!!

Any down side so far?

Carla said...

She's beautiful. I love all her spots.