Sunday, September 21, 2014

Absentee Pig Keepers

I bought a hog at the County Fair last Friday.  It was trailered from the fair to it's new home by our Ag teacher friend and she and her students are caring for it during the week at the barn.  My job was to take care of the hog on the weekends when the kids weren't at school.

So yesterday I packed Grandma and Rhiannon in the car and we all went to check on "Yummy".  Yummy was previously named "Bacon", but the other Grandma said she didn't like that name so Rhiannon re-named him "Yummy".  Probably not exactly what Grandma had in mind, but that's too bad.  You're not supposed to name the animals we're going to eat anyhow.  He's lucky he's got a name.

Anyways, we fed Yummy and gave him an apple core for dessert.  I don't think he's ever seen an apple.  Before we got him he was on "show pig" food and now he's on a basic hog grower feed.  It's not the most cost-effective strategy, but since he's not at our place we can't give him our scraps, extra milk or eggs, nor can we use all the wild forage in the woods to fatten him up.

I filled up his water tube (a 4' tall, 6" wide PVC pipe open at the top, sealed at the bottom with a metal nipple at the base), hosed him off a little and we said goodbye to Yummy and made our way home.

It was a 27.4 mile round-trip drive.  Again, not very cost effective.  This pig is going to cost us more than I thought.

So after talking with the Ag teacher (Adrian), we decided that we would pay one of the kids that also had hogs at the barn to feed Yummy on the weekends.  I would pay the kid $10 each weekend, but not directly in cash.  Adrian smartly decided that instead of giving the kid ten bucks each weekend to blow on soda or whatever it is pre-teens do with a Hamilton, that I would put it towards his show animal for next year's County Fair.  This way he wouldn't have to run around trying to scrape up money (apparently like every 4-H'er does when they want to get a show animal) next Spring.  It probably won't buy an animal outright, but it would be a nice start.

It seems that we may not see Yummy more than a few times before he's put in the freezer.  This isn't exactly how I envisioned our first foray into pig-keeping would turn out, but so far it seems as if it will work.  And I won't have to.


  1. Sounds like a wise decision to me. Good arrangement. Sure, you won't really get to know your porker, but maybe that's for the best this first time around. When you do get a piglet to raise up at your place on all your good milk, table scraps, yummy weeds and such, get two of them. I really do think they're happier with company. And I don't think you'd have any trouble selling the extra pork you didn't want to put in your freezer.

  2. Sounds like a great deal to me. You still will know from whence cometh your pork - but without all the work. I'm with Mama Pea - consider this a warm up for the real thing!