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Old 12-10-2012, 07:53 PM
stardogs stardogs is offline
Behavior Nerd
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: NC
Posts: 4,925
Default Pig Training

So we have many dog training threads, but has anyone else gotten to train pigs? I trained several for a motivation study in college, but it's been years since that. Until last week.

I got a call from a woman with a pot bellied pig that she wanted training help with. She was going to be out of town for a week and wanted to hire me to come and work with "Virginia" every day as both training and enrichment since she's used to lots of human interaction. Today was day 6 and I am pleased as punch by all the things she's doing, so I thought I'd share all my videos from our training for those who might be curious.

First, "piggie Zen", aka impulse control around food. She would mug you for food and that made training difficult. Yesterday we upped the ante to nuts because she was so awesome with veggies and I'm adding a verbal cue as a bonus "trick".

Second, recall. On day 1, V ran away from me and I could only get her back by waving food around. Today, she was running so fast to me that she skidded out on a turn!

Third, leash walking. V needs to be comfortable on leash for vet visits and traveling, but if she felt anything around her body she'd start screaming. I've taught her to stick her head into a harness and collar and we've used "silky leash" to teach her that pressure is information, not something scary.

Fourth, sit. This has been the hardest to teach - we're juuuust now getting her to more reliably give a sit when lured, but once she's in a sit, she's getting much better about settling into it instead of popping right back up!

Videos in order chronologically:

Zen and Recall, day 1

Recall, day 4

Recall, day 5

Leave It, day 6

Sit, day 6
Erin, Ziva, Kestrel, Aerten, and Snipe
Always in our hearts: The Amazing Maggie Mae

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