For about the first two months, Lucky woke up throughout the night to drink from his bottle. It stopped when we went out of town for a weekend and had a pet sitter take care of him and our cat and dog. The pet sitter came over every 6 hours spread throughout the morning, lunch, afternoon and night. This meant Lucky didn’t have anyone to feed him in the middle of the night. At this time, he was also running out of formula. We made the decision to discontinue formula and bottle feeding and transition him to solid food. This was the perfect time.

pig at night

This was out daily routine prior to starting solid foods, in the present tense, which was when I wrote it. 

I usually have the overnight shift, which means I also get up every 1-3 hours to feed Lucky. This doesn’t take too long, usually just 5 minutes including time to wash my hands and get back in bed.

We stage the bottles on the bedside table near his pen the night before. When Lucky wakes up and starts snorting, I grab a bottle, hold the nipple and shake it. Then I feed Lucky, give him a minute to make sure he’s finished and not just taking a break, then wash the spilled milk and snot off of my hands. Sometimes, he tricks me and wants more milk after I’ve cleaned myself, so I repeat the cycle.

Back in bed I sleep for another hour or two. Typically, I get up about 4-5 times per night. It’s not ideal, although it’s a lot quicker than nursing a baby. Don’t get me wrong, I’m still exhausted from the interrupted sleep, but it could be worse.

Lucky’s day usually starts between 5:30 and 7:30am when my husband takes over from the nightshift. He feeds Lucky and takes him outside for his first walk. Outside, Lucky plays in the dirt, digs in the grass, aerates the lawn, pollinates plants… and has a great time. Sometimes, they walk to the mailbox (which is about 0.1 miles away) to get the mail from the day before if it came late. Other times, they’ll walk around the yard. Often though, my husband takes his coffee out and enjoys the quiet peaceful morning.

Then Lucky takes a nap and hangs out in his pen until I’m ready to take him out with the kids. If we’re home in the morning, we may go outside around 9am or 9:30am. If we’re out, then it may be closer to 11:30am. Either way, Lucky is always ready and willing to join us!

He plays with the kids and their toys, and he walks around independently a few yards away. Lucky’s great comes when called and heels when we walk.

No matter where I or my husband are, Lucky is always by our feet. 

When we come inside, Lucky has lunch and takes another rest. He hangs out in his pen again, since we’re not ready to let him loose in the house.

At this point, my children also have lunch followed by quiet time. When they wake up from quiet time or are finished reading and they emerge from their respective bedrooms, we often go outside again.

Unless we have someplace to be that interferes with our schedule, such as an afternoon appointment, I aim to take Lucky outside after lunch and before dinner.

I prefer to wait until the kids are awake for a few reasons.

  • I like to be within hearing range so in case something should happen, I can tend to them.
  • It’s good for Lucky to interact with them and for them to be more confident with Lucky.
  • Selfishly, when they are sleeping, I can cook, clean, work on this blog, grade and complete any other work I may have. 

When we come inside, we feed Lucky and he returns to his pen.

Before bed, we take Lucky outside once more to wear him out in hopes that he will sleep more that night.

Depending on how dirty Lucky got outside, I may take him in the shower either before dinner. The other day, my son was playing in the dirt. We’d talked about not throwing dirt, especially on others and even more so, not without their permission. Following that chat, he looked at Lucky…

Son: Lucky throw dirt on you?

Lucky: …

Son: Oh, ture!

Also Son (looking at mom): He said okay. 

Son proceeded to drop dirt on Lucky’s head, neck and back.

When we haven’t showered recently or Lucky’s had an accident and it got on him, I tend to bathe him in the morning. The key to timing is, you don’t want your pig to get cold. Therefore, either plan to dry him or have someplace warm for him to immediately go.

This is our typical routine. Until Lucky doesn’t need to eat as frequently or go out as often, we have made the commitment to abstain from all-day play dates and social outings. When my husband is at work, I am home and vice versa. It was our choice to bring Lucky home, so we are working our lives out around him.