For most types of pigs, the average number of piglets is about seven or eight. However, it isn’t odd to find litters as large as 14 piglets.

As you might imagine, the number of piglets that a sow has depends heavily on the breed of the animal. Different types of pigs have different numbers of piglets. Furthermore, individual factors, like the animal’s age, also have an effect.

For the most part, a pig tends to have the same number of piglets in each litter. Therefore, if a pig’s first litter is seven, then they will probably have about that many for their next litter too.

Of course, there are exceptions to every rule. You can never really know how many piglets a pig is going to have until she has them!

new pig divider What Are the Most Piglets That a Sow Has Had?

Currently, the biggest litter of piglets is set at 27. However, this was over a 9-month period in the form of two different litters. The first litter was 11, while the second one was 16.

The largest litter at one time was 22 piglets.

Both these pigs gave birth to mixed-sex litters, so there were both males and females in the litter.

pig sows in factory farm
Image Credit: Saraí Zuno, Pexels

How Long Can Sows Have Litters?

Pigs can usually start having litters at around 1 year of age. For the most part, this is true no matter the pig’s exact breed. Of course, the age of puberty can vary slightly from pig to pig. There will always be natural variance.

The length of a sow’s reproductive life can vary. For the most part, females’ reproductive abilities will start to decline at around 4 years of age. However, they can still produce litters after this — it just becomes more difficult.

The older the pig, the more likely they are to experience breeding failure.

For this reason, many older sows are culled. However, you may be able to find some that are as old as 10 and still breeding. It all depends on the pig.

How Long Are Sows Pregnant?

Sows are pregnant for 3 months, 3 weeks, and 3 days. Surprisingly, most pigs are quite accurate on when they give birth, so you should have a good idea based on when the sow was bred.

If the piglets are born earlier than this, they are labeled premature and have a lower likelihood of surviving. Sows that have previously given birth to premature litters are more likely to do so again.

Piglets Can a Sow
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How Many Piglets Does a Duroc Have?

This type of pig is known for having large litters, with their average being close to 10–15 piglets a litter. Of course, there are many factors involved, and it isn’t odd for the size of the litter to fall outside of this range. Keep this in mind when planning your sow’s litter.

This breed is known for being one of the best for breeding due to its large litter size.

How Many Times Can You Breed a Sow?

The average sow can breed twice a year and produce healthy litters. How many years they can do this can vary substantially, though. Some can continue to breed for upwards of 6 years, while others have issues after 4.

There is so much variety between sows, it is impossible to have an exact number. It depends on the pig.

Related Read: How to Keep a Pig Entertained? 10 Things They Like to Play With

new pig divider Conclusion

Most breeds of pig have around seven piglets in a litter. However, falling outside of this range is common and shouldn’t be considered unusual.

Mother pigs can usually breed twice a year and produce two healthy litters. Their pregnancy period is short — only about 3 months and 3 weeks — which helps them breed more often.

Duroc pigs do have slightly larger litters, at around 10 to 15 piglets. Compared to the average pig, this is quite high. For this reason, this breed is often chosen for breeding purposes.

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Featured Image Credit: Clara Bastian, Shutterstock