After last year's success at raising a pig we changed tactics and decided to raise a pig to breed from, in theory meaning that we never need to buy a pig again. So late last year we bought a female piglet, then just before Christmas the neighbours came round to help us slaughter our other pig, who by then weighed in at over 150 kilo's. His end was quiet, calm and considerate, done with care and attention and I was very impressed by the fact that he wasn't stressed and everything was done quickly.
So now we have our lovely female pig - Charlotte and she's hopefully pregnant! Apparently pigs are pregnant for 3 months, 3 weeks and 3 days so our babies should be due about the middle of January.
Pigs are intelligent, playful and can learn some basic commands. They aren't dirty but love to roll in mud to keep themselves cool. Our pigs are fed a variety of fruit and veg, a commercial pig food blend and any non-meat left overs we have.
Some people ask how we can bring ourselves to slaughter an animal that we've raised and cared for, played with and loved....the answers is that we know it's had a good life and been treat well, kept as naturally as we can and allowed to do things that commercially meat farmed animals can't. Plus the fact is that meat from an animal raised our way does taste so much better than shop bought meat.
We have another piglet arriving soon too, for Christmas. A gift from one of our neighbours. On the whole the Bulgarian people are wonderful, friendly, generous and caring.