10 Facts About Pigs

Did You Know?
litter of piglets
Pigs are highly intelligent and excellent swimmers. This litter of piglets was born at Cummings School in 2020. Photo: Stephanie Bertrand

In addition to educating and training students in veterinary medicine, Cummings School also cares for cattle, chickens, and sheep and operates a fully functioning 200-acre farm on its Grafton campus. Here are some interesting facts about pigs.

  1. Pigs share dozens of similarities with humans, including anatomic and physiological traits.
  2. They are extremely smart. Some studies have shown that pigs are smarter than dogs.
  3. Pigs have sweat glands! They cool by evaporation, which is why they enjoy rolling in mud puddles.
  4. Highly social animals, they love living in groups with other swine.
  5. A pig uses its big snout to “root” around for food, which is a natural form of its enrichment.
  6. They normally birth 12–16 piglets per litter.
  7. A pig’s strongest senses are hearing and smelling, due to its large ears and snout. 
  8. Pigs say more than just “oink,” they also bark and make grunting noises.
  9. They are excellent swimmers.
  10. Pigs are good sprinters, but not marathon runners.

Stephanie Bertrand is the farm manager at Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University.