Most pigs, including the domestic pig, are raised for their meat. In recent years, hog farms have become large industrial operations along the lines of cattle yards or broiler chicken farms. Since these commercial swine businesses only raise the most productive breeds, heritage and rare breed pigs may be vanishing, unless fanciers step up to the plate to rescue these breeds and the genetic diversity they represent.

In the late twentieth century, pet owners became fascinated by the Asian pot-bellied pigs, especially those breeds said to remain small for a lifetime. Unfortunately, there was something of a scandal when people discovered that many of these miniatures could grow to weigh as much as 150 pounds. Research the final size of your pig before you buy it. They are highly unlikely to make a good apartment pet.