I can remember a time (was it the late 1980s?), when the Style sections of newspapers were full of articles about how the Vietnamese Pot-Bellied Pig was trendy because it was the perfect apartment pet because they never ever grew to be heavier than 50 pounds.
It has since turned out that, to be precisely accurate, they never grew to be over 50 pounds in an apartment in Vietnam before, uh, going to live on a farm.
In the softer-hearted West, however …
— New York Post (@nypost) November 6, 2019
As The Telegraph reported in 2001:
Be grateful you don’t live with a Vietnamese pot-bellied pig
Celia Haddon on pets with a difference. This week: the Vietnamese pot-bellied pig
By Celia Haddon 12:01AM GMT 03 Nov 2001
A SWEET little striped piglet can grow into a gigantic porker weighing 200 lb – with formidable tusks and a big belly. You can litter-train a Vietnamese pot-bellied pig, but you will need a huge compost bin for the 13lb of muck it produces every day.
From the Pickens Progress in 2017:
… “One of the main problems is that [the pigs] can breed at 12 weeks and have a four-month gestation period,” she said. “They’re not full grown until at least three years and people think that a six-month old mom is full size, but that’s only like 40 pounds. Most full grown are between 80 and 150 pounds. We also joked that they could breed through brick walls. It gets out of control.”
Bragg, like other pot-bellied advocates, say people are often misled by breeders who claim their pigs will stay small if they are fed a restricted diet. The North American Potbellied Pig Association estimates that, “The rate of pigs being re-homed because they grew bigger than expected has been reported at 90 percent or higher in the first year.”
The NAPPA website also warns potential pig owners not to fall for the myth of teacup, micro or apartment pig myth.
“People have paid 1000s of dollars to be disappointed when a pig reaches weights greater than 100 pounds,” the site states. “Do not have unrealistic expectations. All pigs grow. The tiny pig you may see or even buy will grow much bigger.”