Why some pigs like to learn to golf

Favourite pastime for pigs is a twist on golf, with species excited at the opportunity to hit balls at targets

When Olivia Gosden first took in one of her pigs, she thought she was doing the farmer a favour. But after learning her beloved Clang was actually learning to golf, Gosden realised it could mean a world of money for her.

Gosden, a marketing manager, had rescued Groucho from a large abattoir and set him free on her Hampshire farm in 2014. He quickly became a local celebrity, becoming a favourite with his fellow piglets and being regularly spotted eating orgy-like amounts of sausages.

Now Clang is a celebrity in his own right, with his own Twitter account, Facebook page and several YouTube videos.

Gosden attributes her successful pig foray to the fact he is constantly enthralled by cars, bikes and aeroplanes. “He just loves going out and getting a bit of exercise,” she said. “He’s the only pig I’ve ever had that loves anything aeroplane related.”

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Using a tractor for hunting, Gosden bought herself a new tractor for the pig, who plays golf on golf balls. Clang can aim at golf course pins; some of his nearest friends have even popped up at golf courses around the country, including one at a National Trust golf club.

Gosden, who has put together a course of young pigs wearing giant golf balls, still can’t understand what’s so appealing about pigs on a golf course. “I’ve watched a couple and they seem quite bored,” she said. “They’re thinking: is this it or not? One was looking really bored and stroking her back.”

Her website says the pigs are not properly trained yet but the ideal question for farmers seeking a suitable pig for golf could be: “What’s really clever about them?” For farmers seeking to make a little extra money from their pig’s talents, Gosden has been advised to “try and get him to fancy the pink and grey.”

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