Pigs love to root (dig with their snouts) and it is a natural behavior. Please do not discourage your pet pig from rooting. This is what his snout is for. Give him a place in the yard that will be all his and that he can root up to his hearts content. A rooting pig is a pig in heaven. If your pig roots up something in the yard that he should not have, it is not his fault. It is yours for poor planning.
He will root up any available dirt searching for something. A favorite time of the year for mine to root is Spring when the ground is still moist. I have noticed over the years that where ever they decide to root they do come up with something, whether it be old roots from the trees and bushes, bark that is below ground level, flora growing under the ground surface, etc. Remember, pigs can smell 100 times better than we can. If it is underground, they will find it.
Example of a Rooting Box
If your pot belly pig is a house pig be sure he has plenty of old blankets, towels or rugs to root around with. Another good idea is a rooting box where he can get a treat by pushing some river rocks around.
Is your little pig rooting on your ankles and turning them black and blue? The rooting on you comes from his instinct to root like he would on mom..and "wa-la" food comes. They are very forceful about this and it does hurt more the bigger they get. Hand feeding is usually what brings this to the problem point. You might want to start putting all treats and food in his food dish only. No treats by hand at all for a while. When he roots on you correct him by pushing him away and saying "NO ROOT"!!
He needs to realize that anything to do with food or treats goes in the bowl, not on your leg. If he does it while your working around the kitchen you can dribble a little water on his head when he gets persistent. (He wont connect the water with you and it will dawn on him if I don't root I don't see the "acid" rain.) I don't know about your pig, but I know that Ziggy will equate root or pushing on my leg with food given from the table very quickly and even one time of sharing can start the process.
If you have an outside pig he will enjoy rooting around in the straw in his pen.
The information presented within our information and resources section has been collected from what we consider experts and various reputable persons including vets, sanctuary owners, and private pig owners among othsrs. Information shown is the latest available. Although we have had pet pigs for 20 years and consider ourselves quite knowledgeable, we are by no means veterinarians. Any health related information presented below should be checked out with your personal veterinarian.