Easy on the Pork: New Study Says Pigs Are Almost as Devoted to Humans as Dogs

Photo: Inti St Clair (Getty Images)

When we hear the phrase “man’s best friend” we instantly think of dogs. The furry, tail wagging, eager to please floofers are forever devoted to their owners. They sleep on our beds, they go for hikes with us, and they snuggle with us when we spend a rainy day binging Netflix. There’s no animal on earth as attached to us, right? Well, according to new research, there is one other animal and it’s as delicious as it is devoted to us.

Researchers at Eotvos Lorand University in Budapest, Hungary, studied pigs and learned that not only is Porky trainable like his canine counterparts, but he also looks for human support when he gets in a jam.

To study the relationship between pigs and humans, the hogs were raised as if they were puppies instead of delicious balls of ham, pork, and bacon. The goal was the determine if pigs had the ability to communicate and bond the same way puppies do.

What they found was that when food was provided, both dogs and pigs get closer to the human and look them in the face more often.

In another test called the “unsolvable task paradigm,” dogs and pigs have to open a box with food inside. Eventually, after opening the box successfully, it securely closes. They realized that dogs and pigs both performed the same. That is, until the box was opened. Surprisingly, pigs were faster at completing the task and dogs were more likely to look for help from humans when they couldn’t get the box opened.

All in all, they found that there’s a potential that not only are pigs a great option for companionship, they might even be better than dogs. But, we’re betting you’re not going to bring a pot-bellied pig into your house instead of that cute Border Collie puppy.

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