Despite the thorough and consistent evidence that pigs are more intelligent than dogs and have booming social lives too, dogs are (for the most part) regarded as ‘mans best friend’; treated with love and affection – whereas, pigs are bred, farmed and slaughtered for food.
But, do we really want to be eating pigs, or cuddling them? Here are 9 reasons that show how similar they are to dogs.
9 Reasons Why Pigs are Basically Just Pink Dogs
1. They’re Sentient
However, definitions don’t define the true spirit of a being – simple observing and showing kindness towards other beings – should provide more than enough proof of the statement anyway. Just like dogs and humans, pigs indeed have feelings, emotion, sustained memory, individuality, survival instinct and a consciousness.
2. They’re Intelligent
NBC News reported “Pigs were trained to move a cursor on a video screen with their snouts and used the cursor to distinguish between scribbles they knew and those they were seeing for the first time. They learned the task as quickly as chimpanzees.” Pigs can even play video games, that are too complex for a 3-year-old human child.
3. They’re Socialites with Families
Pigs can recognise 20 sounds exchanged within their social groups. Like human families and dog packs, groups of pigs have a social hierarchy. Dr. Mike Mendl of Bristol University said: “Our results suggest that pigs can develop quite sophisticated social competitive behavior, similar to that seen in some primate species.”
Similar to dogs (and other animals), pigs raise their piglets with love. They form families and like to stay together.
4. They Love Belly Rubs
When an animal rolls onto their back out of their own choice and the response in their body language reflects positive motions to gentle, loving and affectionate pats, then it’s a social gesture and shows the animal trusts you.
5. They Adore Playtime
Pigs love having playtime, much like you may have seen your canine companions do! Considering pigs have a social disposition and intelligence, it’s only logical they have playful hearts also.
Although pigs are commonly associated with the misconception of rolling in mud to play this is actually how they cool down – pigs have no sweat glands, after all. The playing behavior of pigs is not all that different from dog playtime!
6. They Love Sunbathing
Mud acts as a natural sunscreen – which is all the more reason for pigs to get down and dirty, then dry off with a relaxing nap in the sun. Pigs can even spend hours at any one time, just dozing in the sun (the life of dreams!).
There’s no shortage of footage for you to watch the oinkers sunbathing, for yourself! Unfortunately, many pigs are confined to small spaces on farms and don’t have this luxury.
7. They Learn Tricks
“[P]igs are among the quickest of animals to learn a new routine, and pigs can do a circus’s worth of tricks: jump hoops, bow and stand, spin and make wordlike sounds on command, roll out rugs, herd sheep, close and open cages, play videogames with joysticks, and more. For better or worse, pigs are also slow to forget.”, reported The New York Times. Additionally, you can find 5 basic tricks to teach a micro-pig here and tricks for pot-bellied pigs here.
Note – whenever training animals, please be cautious, keep the wellbeing of the animal in mind and seek help from a professional prior to beginning.
8. They Like New Adventures
Pigs get easily depressed and bored if they live their lives confined to the same, small area – such as the crates on factory farms. They love to go outside in the sunshine, and explore new areas, just like inquisitive puppers.
Often the only time pigs get to experience sunshine is en route to slaughter, after a short life confined to a harsh crate.
9. They Have a Food Love Affair
The day that pigs (or dogs) turn down food, is the day that pigs fly – right? Pigs eat anything and everything they can get their trotters on, something dog owners are likely all-too-familiar with also. Heck – pigs are reputed as being fat animals for a reason!
If you can’t wait to make friends with a piggy why not try Veganuary!