Aggressive sow

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victoria-blythe
Posts: 5
Joined: Tue Feb 23, 2016 4:38 pm

Aggressive sow

Post by victoria-blythe » Mon Mar 14, 2016 5:54 pm

Hi all,

I took on a pair of 5 year old sisters about 6 months ago. In the last few weeks, one of the sows has become increasingly aggressive - charging, swiping and nipping - but only towards men (my husband, brother and male visitors). She has never even nudged myself, female family members or my children, in fact if anything she is overly affectionate and respectful. She is also never aggressive towards them if I am in her eyeline and can see I am watching.

Her sister is the dominant one of the pair and is a big soppy creature to everyone - has anyone else ever experienced anything like this, or have any tips to calm her down and the best way to nip this behaviour in the bud if possible? Hope I don't sound too crazy! :D

The Rushbury Pig
Posts: 262
Joined: Wed Nov 02, 2011 5:03 pm
Location: Shropshire

Re: Aggressive sow

Post by The Rushbury Pig » Wed Mar 16, 2016 6:16 pm

Hi there,

I have seen an old sow behave differently around men but this was fear and she would run away and panic/stress :(

Aggression is a very difficult one to deal with and despite her being sensible with females I would always be extremely careful around her and think you need to be extra careful with your children and other people - there maybe other triggers to her behaviour you are not aware of. Is she worse when she is in season have you noticed?

Normally you would discipline pigs when they are young as their mother's would to ensure as they grow they know the boundaries. This is done by tapping the nose and saying no or careful use of a board and stick (the stick is not to 'smack' them but direct as in showing I hasten to add!!!!). Your sow needs to understand the behaviour is unacceptable. She may however be displaying fear rather than aggression and this makes it a very tricky process as she may need correction but with reassurance and patience. Have you tried getting the men to feed her whilst you stay out of the way.....can they do all the jobs around her as well. You need someone confident who will be calm but assertive! Make sure the men have a board and stick though just in case!!

I think I might also turn to information relating to dogs to work out a possible solution - pigs are very intelligent animals and so perhaps will respond in a similar way but I am no expert in this matter so would always advise caution!

This may however be a behaviour you cannot correct and then you have to assess the risk to those around you.

I'm not sure this is helpful, I'll have a think and come back if I think of anything more useful :wink:
Cheerio for now, Sam Jones :-)

BKKPS Chairperson
Email : samjonesbkkps@aol.com
Tel: 0845 489 5863, leaving a message for the secretary who will forward to me.

victoria-blythe
Posts: 5
Joined: Tue Feb 23, 2016 4:38 pm

Re: Aggressive sow

Post by victoria-blythe » Mon Apr 11, 2016 7:10 pm

So here is a little update on my madam. After reading your reply I spent a few days watching her from afar noting down behaviours and such. It became apparent that her aggression was indeed fear, and the nipping/charging was almost a pre-emptive strike. I took your advice and looked into dog training behaviours with a local trainer and we narrowed it down to the issue being the deep voice striking fear into her and it would seem at some point shes maybe had a bad experience with a man hitting her in some way and now is scared she may be striked :( - and we basically took it from there, my husband did as many tasks around her as he could.

We tried acknowledging good behaviour and completely ignoring her when she showed aggressive/bad behaviour, amongst other things and we all had to follow the same patterns. Several weeks on, she is MUCH better, she is still unsure of 'new' men, but she now tolerates the men that live in the household, going from aggressive, to completely ignoring them and is now starting to become friendly(!) towards them and she is generally much calmer in herself.

It has taken a vast amount of patience - especially on my poor husbands part as he has had to do the bulk of the training to gain her trust and there is still a fair way to go but it's definitely going in the right direction. So big thanks Sam Jones! Pigs and dog training are a good mix! :lol:

The Rushbury Pig
Posts: 262
Joined: Wed Nov 02, 2011 5:03 pm
Location: Shropshire

Re: Aggressive sow

Post by The Rushbury Pig » Fri Apr 15, 2016 5:55 pm

I am so delighted to hear that :D

It will be helpful to others to know there is some merit in the comparison and how to deal with a similar situation - dogs, pigs, children, little difference really :lol:

I hope she continues to settle and that eventually you can all be totally relaxed in each others company :D
Cheerio for now, Sam Jones :-)

BKKPS Chairperson
Email : samjonesbkkps@aol.com
Tel: 0845 489 5863, leaving a message for the secretary who will forward to me.

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