Tag Archives: pigs

Pig Dicks and More

I’m not sure if I have shared with you all my new boar is an idiot who can’t figure out how to actually breed the sows? He’s been living with them for a few months and I’ve been suspicious he hasn’t done his job for a while but I’ve never caught anyone breeding. 

When I pulled him out of the pen and put him with Lola who i just weaned I discovered the awful truth: he’s just sticking his dick out 3 inches. Humping their faces and leaving them with a pearl necklace. 

 Yesterday my sows who were still unbred by him decided to assist me in heat detection by breaking out and spending the morning laying next to the boars pen gazing dreamily as their beady eyes would allow. 

They were out so I figured I would let him out, too. I want prepared to get involved in breeding, but now was my chance. I let him out of his pen and he b lined to the sow who wasn’t in heat, just enjoying some freedom for the day. I had to encourage him to leave her alone and try one of the girls camped out by his pen. He got one to stand up and started massaging her. 

Titanium is a nice little tank, but I’m pretty sure he’s not firing on all cylinders. He lets the tip of his tounge hang out slightly askew and his mouth always slightly agape. His eyes are set in the same look of Pixie mischief sans the intellect for any actual mischief. I have other swine who are quite expressive and I can tell their feelings and thoughts looking at them (you’re planning a breakout, hum?). Titanium is a blank slate.  After my sister pointed out how stupid his expression was I can’t look at him without thinking, “duuuuhhhh.” To my surprise his face can get even dumber when he gets to hump. Yes, his sex face is somewhere between ecstasy and a stroke as his eyes loose that brightness of consciousness and glaze over. “Huuurrrrrr” is the sole thought I imagine going on in that noggin. 
He proved me right as he continually attempted to mount their faces. The girls were in full standing heat and made no protest to the grinding action bestowed upon their jowls. In no time their faces were dotted with white splatters of piglets who never will be. With the help of a friend we got him on the right end.

I looked at my hand: clean enough and cleaner than my work groves. With a sigh I ducked down and did what I swore I would never do: I tried to grab his pulsating weiner getting more involved in porcine copulation than I wanted. 

Did you know pig dicks are slippery? Somewhere in-between “wet baby” and “bar of soap” and trying to grab the damn thing as it springs and spins spraying all kinds of body fluids is not for the faint hearted. Nor is doing it without gloves as the scent is disturbingly like the musk of stinky tofu wafting from the back of an authentic Chinese restaurant. (Unfortunately for me, I was also making Chinese for lunch so I continually questioned if the scent I was smelling was Chinese ferments or pig dick)

In frustration I called George, a pig breeding expert and asked his advice. He told me let the boar settle a little he’ll calm down and I should have some luck then (I looked over into the pen to watch Titanium bouncing between the two sows faces) Next time I should bring the girls to him, but for now just keep trying to grab his Weiner and if you get it in the right spot behind the corkscrew so it feels like vuvular contractions he should extend out aka give your boar a good hand job. New addition to my resume: swine fluffer.

Over and over he would mount and we would attempt to readjust and someone would move and he’d fall off. Over and over I cursed his sweet innocence and wondered if pig porn is a thing and maybe he could learn? (Naw. Doesn’t work for humans, why would it for pigs?) Finally he started to slow down. We shoved him to the sows rear end and I ducked down again. A few grabs and I lost it as it spun wildly around (fun fact: pig penises gyrate). Who would think 3 inches was so darn hard to grab? 3 inches of pig penis one inch away from the goal…. Why is this so hard?! (Or not hard enough if ya know what i mean. Giggidy)

I grab at his corkscrew again and all the sudden it shoots out like a footlong harpoon straight into a very willing and ready Cinnamon. His eyes widen and go crosswise. I am shocked, staring wide eyed inches away from the most graphic sex I have ever seen, assured that, yes, he has a full sized, fully functioning penis! Maybe, maybe this will be a succe–Cinammon adjusted herself and he lost balance and fell out and over. Five seconds of extreme jizz will probably not result in a litter but he’s spent. I’m spent. Peppercorn is so frustrated she’s off in the corner just over getting teased. 


I consider trying to encourage him aga when he rolls in mud and moves on to digging a trench. “Hey, Titanium, you want to try that again?” No amount of pleading can make him try again. My friend pushes on the boar to encourage him over towards the girls and he misunderstands this as an invitation for belly rubs so he falls over with his dumb happy face, tongue hanging out, ready to receive belly rubs. My friend instead sits on him. Because boys.


We quit for the day. I have it marked in my calendar: 3 weeks from now I week have time to come up with a plan. it will be game on.

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Somethings Not Right

Violet had been bagging up so I moved her to the maternity pen. I spread hay around for when she was ready to nest.

She spent a few hot days being miserable.  “I done being pregnant!!” She’s been a good sport though. One evening I had a guest over and she was very vocal. Hormones, but not nesting, tiniest bit of milk. I figured a day or two to go.

“It’s too hot to be pregnant!”

I checked on her in the morning and she had milk. LOTS. But weirdly…she looked like she hadn’t “dropped.”

Yup, lots of milk. Got it all over!

Labor soon, water broke but…weird….something looks off. Her breathing was fast, contractions small. It looked like she wasn’t having uterine contractions at all, so I figure were a few hours away. I went inside and came back out to find a piglet! So I sat down and watched the show. and waited. and waited. While she tossed and turned i kept the piglet safe

Waiting to meet her siblings 

Something wasn’t going right….after over an hour I cleaned up and went in. There was a HUGE piglet still at the cervix. pulled it out. waited, 30 minutes later went in again. next piglet was halfway down the birth canal when i pulled. Okay, maybe she’ll be ok. My mom came up to watch the rest of the farrowing while I had to go to work (new boss, have to play by the rules)

Around noon I get a call that my mother had to pull a few piglets and a few came out on their own. Violet had been asking for help and when mom tried to leave Violet would get upset, so she spent quite a bit of time just comforting her. After the update she went back out. More piglets. A total of 12, momma was being very careful. I had a call into the vet for follow up care after pulling piglets-what antibiotics would be best for Violet so she doesn’t get a uterine infection. When I came home she was happy and proud. I gave her some molasses water to up her sugar levels, she asked for some food so I fed her. Her temp was good. All was well, right?

Then next morning I went out and she looked ragged. So did the piglets. She didn’t want food or drink, her eyes were red and closed. Somethings not good. I tried to give her penicillin but the damn needle kept blowing off and I have to get to work. I called the vet back, they are still busy. So I go to work and finally get ahold of the vet. He’s very concerned she needs antibiotics now. So my mom, my hero and Violets, too, gets the antibiotics the vet drew up and takes them up to the farm.

When she arrived the piglets were dehydrated, lying everywhere. Violet was low on milk. Violet herself was very short tempered. My mother tried to inject her with the antibiotics and Violet tried to attack. Eventually with some guidance from the vet and some help from the neighbors she was able to give Violet the most important medicine, Draxxin. She wasn’t able to give her the banamine- an anti-inflammatory pain killer. Violet still didn’t want to eat or drink until I suggested cold peaches that I picked this weekend. Mom picked the ripest of them all and offered them to Violet…She couldn’t resist. She ate the peaches and later mom bought her a watermelon. Slowly she was able to start rehydrating and producing milk again. The piglets were feeling better once she was feeding them again.

When I got home we tried again to give her the banamine, but she was not having it. I stuck her with the needle and she growled and snapped. My mother, terrified after herself seeing the nasty side of a sow, made me promise to give up for the night and not to give her the medicine alone. Okay I promise! I went back out later to feed her more watermelon and some hard boiled eggs I had just made for her. Oh boy! did the eggs hit the spot! Right after she fed the piglets and milk was back to dripping out the unused teats. Before I went to bed she enjoyed 9 eggs and the last quarter of the watermelon. Piglets were eating and she looked more comfortable. Finally at midnight, after a 12 hour shift at work, I got to bed.

This morning I woke up at 5 am. Can I administer banamine orally? Some googling indicated, yeah, its fine orally! So I got up and injected the remaining eggs with banamine, mixed in a little barley to soak up the remaining liquid and topped it with applesauce to make it delicious. I offered the mixture to Violet and she licked the bowl clean. Yay! She asked for more food so i offered her the bowl from yesterdays breakfast. She looked at it for a second then tore into it. Shes got her appetite back!

Hopefully she gets over this. We both “went in” quite a few times which can lead to infection. Obviously she was starting to develop one. This is exactly why antibiotics really are a boon to animal husbandry and why I am no longer organic. These drugs, when used correctly, save lives and reduce pain and suffering.

This is my first problem farrowing.  I am lucky that I have had so many good farrowings that I recognized something was off. I believe it was a mixeture of two things: over feeding (she was on only 5 lbs of very rich food) which resulted in big piglets and uterine inertia  and dehydration from the heat. I don’t know for sure, i didn’t have a vet look at her but I am guessing thats what happened. I’ll keep you guys updated.

Month of September Update: Pigs

I tried to update my blog. I tried. But my internet is terrible and the folks who “cleaned”my computer deleted my antivirus so my  computer is buggy and typing is a pain.

Peppercorn began to nest on a thursday morning. Big and fluffy nest. I gave her a whole bale all tied up in hopes of keeping her entertained for a while. She ripped out a bite of straw andookitto t   her nest. came back, another bite. cool, I thought, should keep her entertained for a while, right?

nope. Apparently she got impatient and just picked the whole bale up and waddled to her nest and dumped it there. She was so fidgity I gave her some beer to calm her down. Don’t know how much it helped, but she sure liked it!

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It wasn’t until the sun went down she started to farrow. The first few piglets took quite a long time. Two out, took a good 20-30 minutes before Peppercorn got up and repositioned herself. She was so focused on a stuck piglet she accidently laid on both piglets that were at her feet, but her nest was so fluffy i was able to dig them out and they were okay. Finally a HUGE piglet came out and then everyone else came out in fast order. 15 total.

It was a cold night and a few tried to wander off, but i grabbed them once they got too far away and put them back in the nest. I was cold, I wouldn’t be surprised if it was down to the 30’s that night. I went to bed once i felt things were good.

6 am  woke up feeling like I needed to get out ASAP. Found two piglets that had wandered out of the nest: one was chilled but okay and i tossed it in with everyone else. One was dead, or so it seemed. when i moved his ice cold body Ihis jaw flapped open with the slightest hint of lift. I had to move fast.

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Like I did with Blaze two years ago he went into a water bath. he was so cold I started with luke warm water so as not to shock his system and gradually increased the water temp. He started shivering, then squeaking. Eventually i pulled him out of the water and wrapped him in a towel with a blow dryer pointed in. He was getting better. Another dip in the “hot tub” and within 2 hours he was ready to go back outside. amazing!

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15 piglets, 15 teats means alot of fighting.

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While Peppercorn did her best to keep her little ones saft they still bit the hell out of each other at feeding time. I’ve never had injuries like I’ve seen with this litter so I made the desicion: pull a piglet. Sold one of the weaker ones that could benefit from more care. Down to 14 piglets and 15 teats everything started going smoother.

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We are at 4 weeks now. 15 born, 14.5 weaned. Very good! Dispite how Peppercorns first farrowing went (with 10+ born dead) she is now right in the national average of 21 piglets a year.

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We will start weaning this week. I’ll start with the 5 biggest who will go to a local farm and pumpkin patch. I’ll leave the smaller ones on for another week or two. Ack, I’m almost out of piglets?! How can this be?! My boar better hurry up and make some more for me!

Nothing to Waste

I wish i didn’t waste any part of my pigs, but there were a few bits of offal I let go curbside, however this time I did take more of the “waste.”
fat trim

all this is fat trim. I also took home a box of bones, kept the jowls, hearts, livers, trotters and sold the ears and one stomach. I used the majority of the “waste” products I believe.

Now the fat has a purpose that is demonized these days: lard. I personally don’t have experience using lard, but I had an abundance of fat and didn’t want to waste my (not so)little Dot. I also have been approached by folks who want pastured pork lard, so i figure it would be good to keep on hand.

First step is chopping the fat up.

Chopping Pig Fat

I tried rendering small chunks of fat and didn’t get all the lard out, so I switched to a meat grinder like your Grandma (Great Grandma for some of you!) had. I still had to chop so it fit into the tiny grinder, but look at those lovely nuggets of fat!

Gound Pork Fat

Next you cook it. some folks start with a tiny bit of water in the pot, but i found it was warm enough outside that fat was oozing out of the little nuggets already. I used a crock pot for one batch, stove top with a heat disperser on the other. Both produced nice white lard. I rendered, strained out the fat and cooked the fat up a second even third time. In the end I got 5 quart jars full and 16 pint jars for a total of: 3 and a quarter gallons of lard! Wow, and I didn’t even use all the trim! I’ll definitely render again.

A Pantry of Lard

After the liquid fat is rendered out you still have little fat nuggets. If you are brave you can fry them up, add salt and its almost like bacon bits! I was very surprised to see my health conscious mother cook up some “cracklins'” and gobble a bowl of fried fat nuggets. Guess you can take a Southern Gal out of the south, but you can’t take out the Southern!

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I live alone, so i doubt I’m going to use this much lard anytime soon, but i will be able to share with friends and family. I’m looking forward to some good pies and biscuits, myself.

Its A Bit More Calm

I had 3 pigs dispatched yesterday. Digger and Ditch were finally weight, though hitting 250 at 7 months is not very good growth in my opinion.

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One last group photo

Dot almost made it out alive again. I had 2 1/2 portions of pigs sold, 1/2 being mine. I wasn’t going to slaughter someone I didn’t have a buyer for. I was almost going to go without my portion and just let Dottie go again..And I would have if she didn’t throw such poor piglets and have so many non-functioning nipples.

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The kind of goofy face that grows on ya. Come to think of it she looks alot like her dad.

Alas for poor Dot my mother swooped in last minuted and said she would take all of her as it would make nice gifts to give.

I don’t have any guns of my own so I had to hire the kill out. Before he got there I gave them a little beer. Ditch got really aggressive and demanded MORE. “I WANT MORE OF THIS STUFF! I’VE BEEN WAITING ALL MY LIFE FOR THIS. GIVE ME MORE! WHERE ARE YOU HIDING IT?!!!” I guess she was a closet alchoholic.

 

 

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Beer! GIVE ME MORE BEER!

 

When the fellow came I gave them all a bit of milk and he shot Dot and  bled her without the other two noticing much. Ditch went next. Dead instantly. Awesome. Then Rosie got wind and started protesting from her paddock so I went and calmed her down and gave her some milk. I guess the last pig wasn’t afraid like usually happens in large kill houses. He was wary, but wasn’t freaking out. The slaughter guy said Digger kinda stared him down and challenged him. Well, don’t challenge a guy with a gun.

It really was a lovely day to go, and it was so calm and quick. It seemed the only one that was any the wiser was Rosie, of course! Well, and the ram. He positioned himself in the field so he could watch, too.

 

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That there is some stink-eye if I ever saw it.

I made use of more of my beasties than I have before. I cleaned a stomach for a customers enjoyment. Much to my surprise it was completely loaded with well chewed grass. Like, 5 lbs grass. I cleaned some ears and trotters, took the testicles for the dogs enjoyment. Hopefully I’ll get to using all of them next time.

Looking at their innards they were very healthy. The fellow was impressed with their health and low worm load: for being on pasture where worms are almost impossible to get rid of once introduced he said they were really in excellent shape. Dot had a nice layer of fat, but not too thick. The boar was the leanest of them all, but I think in better shape than last years boars.

It was also nice to get compliments on my farm from someone who visits them frequently. He appreciated my set up with the hogs outside in good light, had them close to the gate for easy access. Apparently he’s had some adventures at farms less put-together than mine.

Once again, it was a very positive experience and I’ve been able to provide humanely raised and slaughtered, healthy, pastured pork for 5 differently families. Pretty cool.

I got to try something new, too: bbq pigs feet!

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Goodbye, Guys!

No, don’t worry. I’m not leaving (although I am having computer trouble so im not posting as much). Its just I went from this:

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To this:

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Just a handful of piglets left. I’ve got a breeding trio saved for some folks who may or may not come through. If they do, money! if they don’t then I’ll save the nice gilt and breed her next winter…im kinda hoping they don’t come through.

What is more is next week I’ll have 3 large hogs slaughtered. As it stands my farm have brought in more than twice as much as needed to be a “farm” in the eyes of the tax man in the last two weeks and am looking at bringing in a few grand by the end of the year. Very exciting! Maybe this venture is going to produce enough I can invest some serious money in infastructure? I still have another couple hogs to raise and sell, then lambs to sell. If I do slaughter them I’ll shear them before slaughter hopefully soon enough i can get a nice shearling fleece out of them. They all have great fleeces. All in all animals are paying for their feed, at the very least.

I still don’t know what to do with Leche, but thats a story for another time.

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