Kidsday reporter Isabella Galeas, of Waverly Avenue Elementary School, Holtsville, and her...

Kidsday reporter Isabella Galeas, of Waverly Avenue Elementary School, Holtsville, and her pig, Coco. Credit: Galeas family

Choosing a pet can be exciting, rewarding and challenging. Taking care of a Juliana pig is all that.

Pigs happen to be one of the smartest animals. That means that if you’re keeping them in your house, you have to be careful because they are able to open doors with their snout, jump gates and get into trouble when not watched carefully.

The first thing you want to do when thinking about adopting a Juliana pig is to be sure that you can take care of one. A pig needs lots of attention, especially when it is young.

Most house pigs are litter-box-trained. This can be good and bad. It’s good because a pig knows that it has to go in the litter box. This can be bad because the litter tends to go all over. Also, if a person does not spot-clean the litter box, then the pig will find another place to go, sometimes on the floor or rugs. Pigs are clean animals and don’t like their hoofs to be wet or to get dirty. It’s important to keep their area clean.

It’s important to balance a pig’s diet. Very often pigs can become overweight because they will eat everything and anything. Depending on the size of the pig, most Juliana pigs will have a cup of pig pellet food twice a day and a cup of vegetables once a day. It’s not recommended to give human food to a pig. Pigs need a variety of vegetables so they can get the nutrients they need from all different type of vegetables.

Pigs also need lots of water. It’s important to maintain a full water bottle and an easy way for them to drink it. Most pigs will drink from a bottle because they tend to step in or spill a water dish.

Pigs need attention and love. A pig can act out if ignored, or if it does not get enough exercise. Indoor Juliana pigs should not have the run of the house, because they can become very destructive when no one is home. A person can gate them off or keep them contained in one area.

Pigs really enjoy mud and the outdoors. It’s important to harness-train them, because it’s not advised to let them run loose in the backyard. They are able to squeeze their bodies into small spaces and can get loose.

They love belly rubs and having their belly scratched. They love to cuddle and sleep. They also require a lot of work and care. Constant cleaning up and cleaning up the area can be time-consuming, as well as sticking to a feeding schedule that is good for the pig.

Juliana pigs can become a person’s best friend and are very sociable and vocal. They will tell you in their squeals what they like and don’t like.

If you want to adopt one, be sure you read all about it and look up all information about pigs. Lastly, think about your own lifestyle and see if you can adopt one. If you can, you will have a great friend.

Kerry Abernethy’s fourth-grade class, Waverly Avenue Elementary School, Holtsville

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