There is a diverse number of pigs globally, and each breed differs in size, appearance, and characteristics. It's not uncommon for people to think that most pigs are the same. However, that belief is not valid. The next time you visit a pig sanctuary, like Rooterville, or see one out in the wild, stop and think about where it may have originated from and try to recognize the breed. With the seven pigs we've listed below, it may just become easier for you to identify them.
1. The American Yorkshire Pig
White with erect ears, these pigs are most popular in Canada and the United States. Many say that the American Yorkshire breed is from York, England. These types of pigs usually are very muscular and masculine, even being described by some as durable. While they can be found in almost every state, you most often can find the American Yorkshire pig in Illinois, Indiana, Nebraska, and Iowa.
2. The Berkshire Pig
You can find the Berkshire pig to be primarily black with a few white spots on their face, legs, or tail. They have a medium-sized snout smaller than their large ears. Usually, this breed is low to the ground with short legs. Oldest of the pig breeds in Britain, they got their name from their original breeding in Wantage and Faringdon in Berkshire.
3. The Tamworth Pig
Tamworth pigs are some of the oldest breeds known to man, and unfortunately, are highly endangered species. In Ireland, these pigs were known as "Irish grazers" because they were such good foragers. If you're wondering how to recognize this pig, it's simple. Identify this breed by its red or "ginger" color, elongated head and body, and pointed ears.
4. The Angeln Saddleback Pig
In 1937, a new pig breed emerged in Angeln, Germany, and it went by the name of the Angeln Saddleback pig, or the Angler Sattelschwein. Individuals can recognize this pig due to its large lop-ears and black body that typically has a white band going all the way around it. Fun fact: the boar variety of this pig can weigh up to 350 kg and stand at 92 cm. Can you imagine? That's 771 pounds and only 36 inches!
5. The American Landrace Pig
When one sees a "pink pig," the American Landrace is what they are referring to. These animals are domestic pigs that are medium to large and mature very quickly. This pig breed's physical characteristics are identifiable by their very long bodies and fine white hair. This breed has a very long snout and ears that tend to slant forward and droop a bit. Aren't they cute? Their piglets are adorable, too, and there are often plenty of them. The American Landrace tends to raise larger litters than other breeds in the U.S.
6. The Danish Landrace Pig
The adorable Danish Landrace pigs range in size from medium to large and have a white body with fine hair. Perhaps one of the cutest features about them is their long snout and very floppy ears. The Danish Landrace pig is native to Denmark, hence their name. Initially, the Danish Landrace breed was a mixture of swine registered in 1906. However, these pigs have made a name for themselves ever since. As far as their diet goes, these animals are omnivores, which means they eat both plants and meat. Their meals can consist of anything from flowers to human dinner leftovers.
7.The Gloucestershire Old Spot Pig
Native to the English people, the Gloucestershire Old Spot Pig is often calm and friendly. They are great pigs to have around a pig sanctuary as they can be friendly with all other animals. You can identify these pigs by their primarily white skin and hair with black spots around the body. In the past, these pigs were known as "orchard pigs" because of the fact that they were traditionally found in orchards. The Gloucestershire boar can reach a mature weight of up to 600 pounds and the sow at 500 pounds. Don't worry, though, because these pigs are quite gentle giants.
Learn More About Pigs
Are you interested in the over 150 different pig breeds? In this blog, we've only covered 7, but there's plenty of information on the different types to be shared. If you'd like, you can find out more by visiting the website for our non-profit pig sanctuary, Rooterville. We would be more than happy to talk to you about the different types of pigs we care for and their unique needs and characteristics. If you'd like to contact us, please call us at (386) 661-2287. You can also speak with our founder, Elaine West, by sending an email to Elaine@rooterville.org.
Are you a Pig Lover?
If you're a pig lover like us, we invite you to check out our pig collection on our website. We call this section of the website our pig lover paradise. You can never have enough pig gear, and we can supply all of the items you've ever dreamed of having and MORE! Here are a few of our favorite pig items that our team and our customers adore: