Other common names: Duroc-Jersey
The origin of the Duroc breed of swine is traced to a red boar (named “Duroc” after a famous trotting stallion) brought to New York in the early 1800s, born from parents that may have come from England. The Duroc line was interbred with large red hogs from New Jersey (called “Jersey Reds”) resulting in smaller pigs with finer bones, faster growth and maturity, and more desirable meat qualities. Durocs have become a foundation for many mixed-breed American commercial hogs.
Appearance / health:
Durocs are typically reddish in color, but currently come in a range of variations from light gold to mahogany red. “White Durocs” are a result of crossing with white breeds. Durocs are medium to large in size with drooping ears. The face is slightly dished. The body tends to be muscular, requiring less feed to produce a pound of muscle compared to other breeds.
Despite their energy and gregarious nature, pigs are sensitive animals. They are easily stressed by travel, vaccinations, extreme temperatures, and new surroundings. Stress makes them susceptible to ailments like pneumonia and bronchitis (due also to their small lungs relative to their size). They are also susceptible to animal viruses like influenza. Pigs commonly suffer from mad itch (or pseudo rabies), dysentery, and parasites (lice, ticks, and ascarid worms).
Healthy pigs have shiny hair, bright eyes, strong appetites, and high energy. Their normal temperature is 102.5F. Deviations from the normal temperature and other signs of poor health including diarrhea and coughing should promptly be brought to the attention of a veterinarian.
Behavior / temperament:
As omnivores that love to eat, pigs can be fun to watch while they explore their surroundings in search for something to munch on. They use their snouts to smell and unearth a potential meal. They are intelligent and social animals that quickly get used to the presence and affection of humans.
Some pgs are intelligent enough to learn tricks, obey commands, and use a litter box. Because they have no sweat glands, they tend to cool themselves by rolling in water or mud. The mud that dries on their skin serves as a sunscreen and protection from parasites like ticks, lice, and flies.
Duroc boars are notorious for being aggressive.
Housing / diet:
Pigs are active, curious animals that require room to explore, exercise, and just be their natural energetic selves. Sufficient space, relative to their size and weight, is a primary consideration because pigs that are crowded or confined to small spaces become stressed, and healthy growth and development is hindered.
Although constantly roaming and appreciative of open yards and fresh air, pigs also require a shed or housing that will let them sleep on a dry and clean area at night. Ideal ambient temperatures are 60-70F. Warm shelters with wood chip bedding are a must during cold months; water misters are recommended for the hottest months.
Pig housing should also include a feeder and a drinking water dispenser (usually a water barrel). Access to a water source makes it convenient to clean or hose out the pig shelters (and the pigs) as needed. Chain link fencing, shade trees, and a pond are recommended for backyard habitats.
Pig owners are advised to check with local authorities for legislation regarding the ownership and keeping of pigs in their homes and backyards.
As omnivores that eat plants and animals, Pigs will consume almost anything that is edible like fruits, roots, flowers, grass, insects, worms, all types of meat, and even leftover scraps from the dinner table.
Unlike ruminant animals (cattle and goats), pigs have a single stomach. For healthy and fast growth, pigs require a high-energy diet composed of grain (corn, oats, wheat, barley), plus protein and vitamin supplements. Most commercially available feed for pigs combine various farm grains and the necessary supplements to ensure rapid and efficient development.
Pigs are best allowed to self-feed or eat as much as they want during the day to enable them to grow as fast as they normally can. Feeding should always include a good supply of clean, fresh drinking water.
meat production, lovely red Duroc, gentle hog, minimal management, good carcass quality, free range swine
electric fence, Aggressive Mothers, sunscreen, shade
great showing, perfect mothering potentials, large breed, small farm, muscle building block
Easy to Manage, Prolific and Good Mothers
Personally, I say this is a breed that you must have. You can earn more in no time with less maintenance.
They are good in foraging and eat barn or pollard as well as leafy plants such as kangkong. They are very robust and are always active and docile.
What we like most about this breed is that they are capable to produce as many as 25 piglets. Ours got pregnant for about 4 months and then gave birth to 20 healthy piglets.
And these baby pigs easily grow because they tend to drink a lot of milk. And this Duroc pig likes this. In fact, she has this natural instinct to position her body in such a way that her babies can drink milk well and even more than enough.
She is not aggressive too even when she was pregnant. She lives like she is not pregnant at all. In any circumstance, this pig shines and maintains her overall quality.
Highly recommended to breeders!.
From Evane Oct 8 2014 3:17AM
My Show Pig Experience
In junior high and high school, I had the opportunity to show multiple animals through our local FFA (Future Farmers of America) organization. Overall, this was a great experience for me. It is what lead to my career now as a veterinarian.
The hogs I've chosen to highlight in this review are the Duroc. Their influence in commercial pork production is limited, but they are a neat niche breed. Their red color is very unique in the porcine world, and what makes them stand out in a group of pigs. The individuals I raised and showed were very docile and easy to work with. Individuals can have great conformation and be used in out-breeding programs for commercial production to increase genetic diversity (most hogs raised for pork in our area are of the Hampshire or Yorkshire breed).
Two things to know about raising backyard pigs: 1) From a first glance, they appear to be lethargic, stupid animals. They are not! Pigs' intelligence is very high. Many papers I read in college suggest that pigs are generally smarter than dogs. Because of this, they can easily breakout of well constructed enclosures or figure out latches. 2) They get very big. They fall into the "large animal medicine" category for a reason. Most pigs in the United States are harvested for meat at less than one year of age. Left to their own devices, in 3-4 years most breeds of commercial pigs will weigh over 400-500 lb. (depending on breed). Most will max out at 700-800 lb. These are not 'pets,' in the context you get one for life. Please keep this in mind when you see the cute little pigs at county fairs..
From nickcostondvm Oct 8 2014 6:20PM
Aggressive Mothers, Quick Gains, Heat Sensitive
Durocs are very showy pigs, featuring a vibrant red coloration. Durocs tend to be more aggressive than many other breeds of pigs. A Duroc sow that has recently farrowed is a very dangerous animal, and should be handled with extreme caution. However, the sows are incredibly good mothers, having large litters and yet keeping a greater number of their piglets to weaning than many other breeds. Having said that, Durocs are incredibly hardy. We have had all of our hogs on pasture for the last three years, and in this situation the hardiness of the breed has come to be seen. Durocs are excellent foragers and tolerate both heat and cold relatively well. Durocs have quick and thorough muscle gain, and the quality of the carcasses is relatively high. The biggest benefit of a Duroc is their show quality. Durocs are incredibly attractive hogs, and have a relatively high commercial value due to this. Overall, if you are the owner of a small hobby farm, I would not highly recommend Duroc pigs, due simply to the difficulties that come with handling them during workings and the like..
From cgallimore Apr 16 2015 12:55PM