MSD Manual

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Depression, inactivity, high body temperature followed by a drop in body temperature; in direct sun or a warm to hot environment

These signs are likely caused by overheating. Use a fan to move air across the body. If in direct sun, provide shade. Wet head first with cool water for 10 to 15 minutes before wetting entire body surface for evaporative cooling. Do NOT apply cold water or ice because this can induce additional temperature shock. If possible, rest your pig on a cool (65°F to 75°F) surface. Monitor carefully and get veterinary help if recovery does not occur promptly with cooling. Overheating can be fatal.


Potbellied pigs are prone to weaknesses of the limbs and lower back and can easily break bones. Look for evidence of bites or other injuries. Minor scrapes or abrasions may be cleaned with soap and water, followed by an antiseptic or antibiotic cream. Check for evidence of more serious problems. If you find cracked hooves or evidence of animal bites or if you do not find a problem, see your veterinarian for a prompt examination. Lameness accompanied by vocalization should be treated as a potential fracture and immediate veterinary care should be sought.

Extended straining to urinate or defecate

If your pig is having trouble urinating or defecating, this could be a sign of serious problems. Your pig may have swallowed a foreign object or have any of several serious medical problems. A prompt visit to the veterinarian is warranted. If a fresh sample of urine or feces is available, take that with you to the appointment.

Frequent urination, straining to urinate, and/or blood in the urine, especially with vocalization

A prompt veterinary examination can determine whether your pig has a serious urinary tract condition, such as a bladder inflammation (cystitis) or stones in the urinary tract (urolithiasis). Bring a fresh urine sample with your pig to the examination.