Kunekune pigs are becoming increasingly popular, and for good reason. They're lot of fun to raise, and a lot of people are starting to see their potential as meat pigs. Kunekune pigs are the best choice for homesteaders, small farmers, heritage breed conservationists, and 4H and FFA members since they are smaller and simpler to handle, have a proclivity for grazing, are easy on pastures and fencing, and stay near to home. If you've never had Kunekune pork, you're in for a delicious, quality pork treat!

Always do your homework and learn as much as you can about how breed registries and the registration procedure before investing in Kunekunes. The International KuneKune Hog registery and the American Kunekune Pig Society are the two breed registries for Kunekune pigs. Breeders can register with any or both organizations. We belong to both organizations, but our farm aims and breeding techniques are more aligned with IKHR. As a result, we notify and register all of our pigs with them on a regular basis. The registration process is basicly the same , and most people will choose one over the other based on personal taste.

The IKHR, previously the AKPR, was established in 2006 as the first official foundation registry. The annual fee is $40. Access to the herd book, litter notices, registrations, and transfers are all completely free. When you join IKHR, you'll get a herd book prefix that's specific to your farm name. Our herd book prefix, for example, is BFF – BF Farm. In 2013, AKKPS became the second official breed registry to go online. A family membership is $40 per year. Each litter notice costs $20. The cost of registering a piglet or transferring a piglet is $15. You will be given a unique herd prefix to use with your litter notifications and registrations after you have joined.

Investing the effort to learn about the procedure might save you a lot of aggravation in the long run. When it comes to livestock and registered stock, there will always be good and bad experiences, just as there are good and bad individuals in our world. Knowing how the procedure works can help you protect yourself and guarantee that you have a positive experience in the end. I speak from personal experience, having gone through an awful situation that might have been avoided if we had done our homework.

1. Anyone selling you registered piglets should be a member of the American Kunekune Pig Society or the American Kunekune Pig Registry.

Breed registries keep track of herd books and offer registration services. You may check to see if someone is a member, but be cautious: just because someone is a member doesn't imply they'll breed ethically. Neither of the breed registries serves as a governing body.

2. You can check to see if the breeder is actively notifying buyers about litters and/or registering piglets. The recording of litter notifications demonstrates that a breeder is involved in keeping the herd book updated with information from their foundation stock. It also implies that if they want to register an exceptional piglet, they have completed the first stage of the registration procedure. The processes for registering a piglet are straightforward. The breeder must first send out a litter notice. Then they take hair samples and submit them to the Veterinary Genetics Laboratory at UC Davis (an account is set up for breeders in association with the registries they are members of). Once the DNA test has been completed, The AKPR herd book is open to the public, and you may look up a breeder's activities by searching for their last name. AKKPS is a private herd book that may only be viewed by registered breeders that have herd book access. Here's an example of our farm's AKPR litter alerts. As you can see, we are currently informing the piglet register about litters born on our farm. We don't have many piglets registered for a variety of reasons, including the fact that most piglets are grown for meat, some piglets are kept for observation and will be registered later, and most piglets will lack that particular something that qualifies them for registration.

3. If someone is selling registered piglets, they should be able to explain the pedigree and bloodlines of their foundation stock to you, as well as supply you with information on the pedigree. WALK AWAY if someone can't tell you what bloodlines their parent stock is, or if they offer you a long explanation for why they don't know. Bloodlines are assigned to registered pigs, and names like "Wilsons Gina/Mahia Love" or "Kereopa/Boris" or any of the other names listed here may appear. Most breeders will happily disclose the pedigrees of their parent stock with you. This is how a pedigree for AKKPS and AKPR looks like.

 4. Only registered owners of the SOW are allowed to register piglets from parent stock. It's probably in their name. They can't register the piglets if it's in someone else's name. WALK AWAY if someone claims, "My pigs are registered, but someone else is keeping their paperwork for me and promises to register any piglets born on my property." This is a tragedy waiting to happen!

Registration is a thorough but straightforward procedure that necessitates commitment to a number of stages, all of which must be completed by the breeder and farm where the piglets were born, not by someone who is hours or states away. Both registries make it simple to register online. There is NO EXCUSE for a breeder not to do it or to make excuses for not being able to do it. Registration can also be done by mail. Other than mere laziness or a deliberate refusal to register, there is no reason for registrations or transfers not to take place. And fraud—a breeder who has deceitfully sold you unregistered stock under the guise of registration papers that are on the way.

Remember that only the registered owner of the sow can register piglets.

A person cannot purchase an unregistered pig and then register it unless the person who originally sold it to them agrees to transfer the registration.

A person cannot acquire an unregistered piglet and then use a "DNA test" to get the piglet registered by another party. Only the piglet's original breeder is capable of handling all of the registration procedures.

If you have written and/or contractual documentation of acquiring a registered pig and the breeder has failed to register the pig despite many efforts, you may be able to register the pig under AKPR's "Undocumented Registration." There are no certainties, but it is a good starting point.

A professional breeder will happily offer good communication, a contract, and/or evidence of purchase. Most breeders nowadays have a website and a presence on social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, or a blog. Take a look at those links! On Facebook, there are several wonderful Kunekune groups. Join some discussion groups. Investigate. Owners of Kunekune pigs love talking about them, answering questions, and assisting newcomers. Don't be afraid to ask questions.

In conclusion, don't be scared to inquire about the following:

1. Are you a member of the American Kunekune Pig Registry and/or the American Kunekune Pig Society as a breeder?
2. What are the piglets you're selling's blood lines?
3. Can I view the parents' pedigrees as well as photographs of them?
4. Is the sow named after you? Are you the sire's owner?
5. Will this piglet be compatible with another gilt/boar that I own?
6. Could you look at pedigrees and/or talk to me about conformation so that I may make the best selection for my goals?
7. What is your worming and/or vaccine regimen? What will be given to my piglet?
8. Is my piglet guaranteed to be healthy? Is there a guarantee of reproduction?
9. Will you be available to answer questions if I have any in the future?
10. Can we have a written contract and can you guarantee to register my piglet/transfer my pig in a fair period of time?

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