Separation Anxiety

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Emma Rhoden
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Separation Anxiety

Post by Emma Rhoden » Thu Nov 29, 2018 4:06 pm

I have a Barrow and a Gilt and my Barrow does great but every time I let my gilt out of her pen she does not want to do anything but go back to her pen or to the barrows pen. We have them both in separate pens and there is a smaller walking area around the pens but I like to let them out of that and take them into the yard so I can practice in a bigger area and turn them around trees but the gilt freaks out every time I let her In the yard(we do walk them at different times). I try to be calm with her as much as possible but I do have to hit her a little harder if she will not turn in the yard because she tries to run into the fence and she squeals/grunts supper loud and wears herself out instead of just listening to me when I try to be gentle. Any help or comments are greatly appreciated, this is my 7th year showing a pig and I am usually good at showmanship but I don't know what else to try with this pig, I have never had these problems before.

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hogger39
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Re: Separation Anxiety

Post by hogger39 » Tue Dec 04, 2018 12:03 pm

This issue happened to me this past summer. If the pig is really worked up to the point that you cant train her, you may need to walk them together if that is an option. Two people each walking each pig often works great. The training as not progressed at all with her if she cannot get over the separation anxiety, so you and the pig are still at square one. There is no bond between showman and pig. If she will take affection from you, some will and some won't, take some time to sit in the pen with her. Another thing to try would be putting a marshmallow on the end of your whip and leading her around. This will hopefully take her attention away from the barrow and onto the treat. If you can, walk her where she can't see the barn. This may help her forget about the barrow. Another thing to try would be walking with a whip and a board. When the pig turns back and starts to go for the barn, use the board to stop her and see if you can't get her to turn around. It's just going to take time. My pig did not shape up until a week before the show. He was not trained as well as I like, but I could control him in the showring. My questions are how heavy is she and when is the show? This may help myself or somebody else give you a better answer. Hope some of this will help you. Best of luck with the pig and the show.

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showbroke
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Re: Separation Anxiety

Post by showbroke » Mon Dec 17, 2018 12:32 am

Have run into this many times with our own or helping someone. Have someone help you and walk the Barrow while you walk your gilt. This is not a quick fix but it is s permanent one. Week 1 walk them together get her comfortable with the sites and sounds. She will more than likely stay super close or just behind the Barrows. Don't worry about anything except her just walking out. Take the opportunity to get her very comfortable with the whip.
Week 2 while walk make sure you urge her in to stay beside the Barrow. Get her comfortable with travel beside him.
Week 3 start urging her to lead the walk. A nose at first. The a neck. Pretty soon she has built up confidence to be out in her own. It has fixed the for us.

mjw1980
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Re: Separation Anxiety

Post by mjw1980 » Wed Dec 19, 2018 7:45 am

I agree with the suggestion above. We had this last year. We would walk them together and then gradually start trying to split them up. It took a week or two to break this habit. Stay calm and keep working. Also to help distract her use treats. We would use marshmallows and she would start following the marshmallow and forget about her buddy.

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