5 Quick Swine Show Preparation Tips

Jul 09, 2020

Tara Jo Bina
Countryside Feed Livestock Nutrition
Have you attended a swine show at your county or state fair and enviously watched a participant win a coveted blue ribbon? Well, a lot of behind-the-scenes work goes into producing a champion show pig. It’s hard work, but it can be very rewarding – even if your animal doesn’t win 1st place. Here’s a quick list of things to consider when it comes to the equipment you’ll need and the different steps to take with your pig to get it ready for a show. If you’d like to learn more, there is an endless supply of online resources on the topic. You can also find out if any show pig workshops or training camps are scheduled in your area. Some can even be attended virtually.
  1. Make sure you have the proper tools and supplies and gather them in one place. A show box is the best, but anything you can use to keep them together will work. It should include:
  • Brushes
  • Cleaning products (mild soap)
  • Water hose
  • Boots
  • Show stick
  • Wash towels for drying after washing
  • Hanging feeders
  • Shovel
  • Water bucket
  • Feed
  • Shavings
  • Grooming day oil or sprays
  1. Begin walking and training your pig at least 60 days in advance of your show date. Also implement an exercise program that increases in intensity so the pig builds endurance to a 30- to 40-minute pace. There are several helpful videos on YouTube that show different training techniques and exercise regimens.
  2. Put your pig on a good feeding program. This is more complex than just going out and buying a bag of feed, so ask your local Countryside Feed representative for help in putting together the right diet for your pig. Also, click here for more details.
  3. Brush and wash your pig daily. In addition to helping you build a bond with your pig, today’s show animals are highly groomed for maximum appearance. Trimming hairs is recommended, but should be performed by someone who has experience with a clipper.
  4. When traveling to the show, make sure you transport your pig during the coolest times of day to avoid overheating. An effective way to lower a pig’s body temperature during the hot summer is to soak towels in a 5 gallon bucket of ice water and place them on the pig’s back.

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