Introducing Children to Skinny Pig Care Safely!

Introducing Children to Skinny Pig Care Safely!

Introducing Children to Skinny Pig Care Safely!

There’s no doubt about it, your children would be super excited to welcome a sweet little hippo into their home. However, you need to proceed with caution to ensure that this introduction is safe, educational, and fun for both your children and your new skinny pig. 

Before ever bringing a skinny pig home, you need to properly educate your children, especially if they are very young. Spend some weeks discussing your new pet, their unique needs and how to properly care for them. With children, preparation is key and knowing exactly what to expect can prevent an accident from happening. Let them be involved in setting up the cage and choosing the hideouts and toys.

Safe Handling

Teaching children how to handle skinny pigs safely is paramount. Start by demonstrating the proper way to pick up and hold a skinny pig - one hand gently supporting the bottom, the other around the chest, always close to the ground to avoid falls. Remind your child that skinny pigs, like all creatures, deserve respect and gentle handling. It's a wonderful opportunity to instill values of empathy and kindness towards animals. 

Initially, hand over hand is a great way to help them to adjust their pressure properly and to give your skinny pig additional support. Ideally, small children should only handle a skinny pig when sitting down somewhere soft like a bed or sofa. Never ever allow a child to handle a skinny pig unsupervised. Remind them to use a soft gentle voice and to talk to their skinny friend as they hold them so they feel safe and secure.

Learning Skinny Pig Language

Just like people, skinny pigs have their own way of communicating. Teach your children to recognize signs that their skinny pig friend might not want to be held. If the skinny pig is hiding, squeaking loudly, or trying to wriggle away, it's time for a break. Explain that respecting these signals is the way to get a skinny pig to trust you. Help your child to understand that being patient in the early days will mean a stronger bond down the line. 

Bonding Activities

Encouraging a bond between your child and their skinny pig can be a magical process. Simple activities like sitting quietly and talking to the skinny pig, offering a favorite treat from their hand, or gently stroking their skin can build trust. Make these activities a regular part of your child's routine to help them form a strong, loving bond with their pet. 

Responsibility and Care: Age-Appropriate Tasks

Involving your child in the care of their skinny pig teaches responsibility and helps them feel like an important part of their pet's life. Depending on your child's age, they can help with feeding, refreshing water, or even cleaning the cage under supervision. Always ensure tasks are age-appropriate and that your child feels confident and safe performing them. Make it a fun and engaging learning experience by creating a "Skinny Pig Care" chart or schedule that your child can follow. Not only does this give your child a sense of independence and accomplishment, but your skinny pig will learn that your child is the “bringer of treats” and get excited to see them.

Introducing your child to skinny pig care can be a rewarding experience that teaches empathy, responsibility, and the joy of companionship. By focusing on safe handling, understanding skinny pig communication, and encouraging a strong bond, you're setting the foundation for a beautiful friendship between your child and their skinny pig. 

Keep giving your pets the best of natural life!


April Arguin A.S., C.P.N., M.P.H

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