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Can Pigs Eat Carrots?

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Pigs are popular farm animals that you can easily raise on your farm so long as you have enough food for them.

Unlike goats and cows, pigs are omnivores and have more complex needs in terms of their diet. This means that you need to carefully select what your pigs eat daily.

What can you feed your pigs?

Can pigs eat carrots?

Pigs can eat carrots but feeding them in smaller amounts will keep them as treats for your ovine friend.

While carrots are sweet and nutritious, growing pigs need a wide range of foods, especially protein-rich foods to grow healthily.

How often should you feed your pigs with carrots? What should you give to your pigs as their regular feed? Continue reading.

Can Pigs Eat Carrots?

Pigs enjoy eating carrots. Carrots are sweet, so pigs love them and will run toward you when they see you holding carrots.

Carrots are crunchy also, which makes them fun treats that pigs look out for.

Why Pigs Should Eat Carrots

Fresh Carrots bunch on rustic background

There are so many reasons why pigs should eat carrots. For example, carrots are delicious, and pigs love them, so you can use carrots as treats. Some other reasons are:

  • Carrots are super nutritious: They are packed with carotene, vitamins, and minerals for pigs. There is no way that your pigs will not get healthier when they eat carrots.
  • Carrots can help to fatten pigs: As tubers that are rich in carbohydrates, carrots can help thin or lightweight pigs to gain weight and become fatter.
  • Carrots can be eaten cooked or raw: While pigs will prefer cooked carrots as they are softer to chew, pigs can also eat raw carrots. You just need to make sure that the carrots are well-sliced.

When Is the Right Time for Pigs to Eat Carrots?

You can give carrots to pigs whenever you want. Well, make sure that there is a supply of protein-rich foods for the pigs as well.

Note that while carrots have a lot of nutrients and are sweet to pigs, they are not protein-rich and cannot take the place of their balanced feed.

This means that even if pigs can eat carrots whenever they can, they also need food to help them grow quickly.

As a tip, you can give carrots to your pigs as treats. Also, you can use carrots to fatten older pigs, as carrots are rich in carbohydrates. It does not matter when you want to give carrots to pigs, just make sure that the pigs continue to eat their protein-rich feeds (which we will discuss later).

Can Baby Pigs Eat Carrots?

piglet sucking milk from mommy pig in the pig pen

Of course, baby pigs can eat carrots. However, you should give them boiled carrots, as boiled carrots are soft and easy to chew.

So long as the carrots are boiled, sliced, and clean, you can give them to your piglets. Also, ensure that they eat other types of foods, especially protein-rich foods so that they can grow quickly.

How Do You Prepare Carrots for Your Pigs?

You should boil the carrots for your pigs, especially baby pigs so that they can be easy to chew. However, if you do not want to boil the carrots, follow these steps to make your carrots edible for the pigs:

  1. Wash the carrots: You want to make sure that the carrots are free from dirt and pesticides. Look at the carrots carefully; if you cannot eat them, do not feed them to your pigs.
  2. Slice the carrots: If you have piglets or little pigs, you should give them carrots that are easy to chew. Slice the carrots so they do not find the carrots challenging to chew.

When the carrots are clean and easy to chew, give them to your pigs right away.

What Should You Watch Out for When Feeding Your Pigs Carrots

There is nothing much to watch out for, as carrots are completely safe for pigs. You just need to make sure that the carrots are clean and pathogen-free.

If the carrots are fresh from your gardens, ensure that you wash them well so that they can be free from pesticides and other products you used while growing the plants.

If you are feeding your pigs with boiled carrots, ensure that you feed them with only fresh carrots.

This means that you should not give your pigs boiled carrots that have been left out for many hours. You do not want to expose your pigs to microbes present in rotting carrots.

Can Pigs Eat Carrot Leaves or Tops?

carrots with tops and leaves on a black plate

Of course, pigs can eat carrot tops and leaves. When feeding carrots to pigs, you do not need to remove the green tops or leaves from the carrots, as they also make up the whole carrot diet for pigs.

Pigs can eat the leaves of plants, so they have no problem with eating the leaves of your carrots.

If you are eating carrots, you can give the leaves and green tops of the carrots to your pigs, and they will happily eat the leaves.

Except those green parts are not as delicious as the orange tubers, so be sure to give your pigs a few delicious carrots as well.

What Else Can You Feed Your Pigs?

For better nutrition, here are some items that you can feed to your pigs:

Pig Pellets or Mash

Pig pellets or mash refers to the formulated feed for pigs.

If you are new to raising pigs and are not so sure about what to feed your pigs, give them formulated feed, as formulated feed contains every nutrient that your pigs need in just the right amounts.

Also, formulated pig feeds are easier to store than boiled foods such as carrots.

When you have piglets, formulated mash should be the first type of feed that you should introduce them to during weaning. Please be sure to feed your pigs with the right type of feed, as several types of formulated feed are made for distinct species of pigs and pigs of different ages.

Seeds and Grains

types of grains and seeds on the table

After pellets and mashes, you want to make sure that your pigs eat a lot of seeds and grains. Seeds such as peas, papaya seeds, pumpkin seeds, etc. contain a lot of proteins and fats for your pigs, so your pigs will grow big, fat, and healthy in no time.

As for grains such as corn, millet, barley, etc., they also contain proteins, but they are rich in carbohydrates and will encourage your pigs to grow fat.

This means that the type of seed that you feed your pigs should be determined by the age of your pigs and how you want them to grow.

For younger pigs that need to grow quickly, give them protein-rich seeds. For older pigs that you need to fatten up, give them grains and other rich sources of carbohydrates.

Animal Products

Here’s what differentiates pigs from ruminants such as goats and cows. Goats, cows, and many other farm animals are herbivores and eat only plants and plant products.

However, pigs are omnivores, so while they can eat exactly what herbivores can eat, they can also eat animal products.

Pigs can eat insects, earthworms, meat, fish, bones, and other products from animals. Your pig’s nutrition is not complete without animal products.

Animal products such as meat and fish can be expensive to use as pig feed, so you can use earthworms, maggots, and other cheap products to give your pigs the nutrition that they need.

Vegetables and Fruits

Fresh organic vegetables and fruits

Just like carrots, you can give a lot of vegetables and fruits to your pigs. However, keep in mind that while fruits and vegetables are super nutritious, they do not have enough proteins to help your pigs grow quickly.

Also, note that fruits may contain copious quantities of sugar that are more than the required amount needed by your pigs.

Your pigs can eat as many vegetables as you can give them, but make sure that they continue to get full access to protein-rich foods. Also, give them fruits as treats so that they do not eat more sugar than they need.

Examples of vegetables that you can give to your pigs are:

  • Broccoli
  • Lettuce
  • Asparagus
  • Squash
  • Cabbages

Examples of fruits that your pigs can eat are:

  • Bananas
  • Pineapples
  • Apples
  • Mangoes
  • Peaches

Kitchen Scraps

 vegetable cuttings in a compost bucket

Do you have leftover food from the kitchen? Instead of disposing of kitchen scraps, you can give them to your pigs, as pigs love eating kitchen scraps.

Pigs can eat leftover potatoes, bread, beans, and other foods from the kitchen. However, do not give them too many kitchen scraps, especially those rich in sugars such as potatoes.

You also want to make sure that the scraps are clean. Do not feed your pigs with kitchen scraps that have been waiting around for a long time. Instead, make sure that the pigs get the leftover food as soon after you are done eating as possible.

Final Thoughts

As you can see, carrots are safe for pigs so long as you give your pigs just the right amount that they need. Remember that pigs need protein-rich foods, so make sure that you give them nutritious pellets, grains, animal products, and other foods that can help them to grow quickly and healthily.