Raising a Pig From Baby to Butchering Weight

| 12/27/2016 10:45:00 AM

Tags: home butchering, raising livestock, pigs, Lydia Noyes, West Virginia,

A big step for beginning homesteaders is starting to raise your own food. For my husband and me, we wanted to find ways to get our Appalachian homestead to provide meat for us.

In my mind, if we eat pork chops, we need to be able to look the pig that provided those chops in the eye without shame. There is no such thing as a free lunch in this world, and our convenient grocery store lives filled with de-boned and shrink wrapped meat products simply makes it too easy to pretend otherwise. To become more acquainted with the process of where our food comes from, we needed to start raising it ourselves.

baby pig2

Earlier this year we tentatively jumped into the homegrown meat process by raising our own meat rabbits. Though it was a little difficult at first to separate our emotions between the different ways we treated our pets and homestead livestock but we eventually found a balance that worked for us. This fall, we were ready to take our livestock raising farther than meat rabbits and try our hand at raising a pig.

pig pen

The first step was building a pig pen that was both cheap and sturdy enough to withstand a pig. My husband, Ian, turned to the internet for inspiration and slowly gathered pallets for weeks until we had enough to build the pen. By the early fall, we were ready.

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