Pigs are often associated negatively with terms like ‘filthy, lazy’, and ‘greedy. Why is the term pig used as an insult?
Reality beyond stereotypes
Science has shown that pigs are highly intelligent, emotionally and inquisitive, and engage in complex behaviors. They don’t deserve to have their names associated with common insults, if you see it that way.
Many believe that pigs spend their time in the mud and are lazy. Pigs can be just as active as other pets. You’ll find pigs that are good swimmers in the Bahamas. Wild pigs enjoy swimming in the clear, uninhabited waters.
Pigs are social and sensitive creatures.
Pigs are energetic and social animals. Research has shown that pigs love playing together, especially when there is music. They are sensitive creatures that can feel the emotions of other animals.
Many people don’t view pigs the same way they see dogs and cats as emotional animals. However, pigs can be seen to respond to positive experiences and to hold their ears when they hear negative.
Many other characteristics prove that pigs can be sensitive. Piglets, for example, are very attached to their mothers. They are also known to scream in distress if they are taken from them.
Pigs can use mirrors to evaluate their surroundings. The reflection of their food bowl was shown to pigs, and they used it to locate their food.
Pigs are often portrayed as filthy. However, pigs use mud to protect their skin from the sun’s harmful rays.
Farms often fail to meet the complex needs of pigs.
Domestic pigs descend from Eurasian wild boars, so there are few differences in their behavioural needs from wild ancestors. To be happy and healthy, they require space and access to forage.
Poor welfare farms often don’t allow pigs to be free to act the way they want. They are not allowed to roam and forage.
Studies have shown that pigs living in close quarters with each other are more aggressive. They often display their mental suffering by baring and tail biting. These behaviors are usually caused by frustration, boredom, and a loss of control over their environment.
These behaviors are usually caused by frustration, boredom, and a loss of control over their environment.
The pigs’ welfare must be considered by the farming industry
Despite the negative associations that pigs have with humans, research has shown that they are not different from other animals, even pets.
Pigs can experience a variety of complex emotions and can be affected both mentally and physically.
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We are working with companies from the largest pork-producing countries to encourage higher welfare farming options such as free-range and indoor farming. We envision a world in which every pig farm is designed to meet the welfare needs.