Dippity Pig: The Mysterious Disease That Strikes Healthy Pigs

Dippity pig syndrome is a horrible disease for pigs to contract

Dippity Pig is one of the scariest experiences that I’ve ever witnessed. A young pig suddenly can’t walk and appears to be bleeding out of large gashes in it’s back. The pig is obviously in pain as his hindquarters seem to be made of Jell-O. 

I hope this has never happened to you, but it got me wondering so I did a lot of research and talked to a couple of professionals to find out what’s happening. 

Is Dippity Pig a Virus? Dippity Pig is classified as a virus and thought to be a virus, but the exact virus hasn’t been identified. Some studies have suggested that it’s similar to the herpes virus in humans that causes shingles. Scientists are attempting to identify exactly what causes Dippity Pig. 

Unfortunately, Dippity is one of those illnesses which we know far too little about. However, there do seem to be several commonalities across the cases help scientists and vets with the illness. 

Dippity Pig Syndrome

Dippity pig syndrome, also known as bleeding back syndrome, is a horrible disease for pigs to contract. Sunburn and sudden loud noises such as thunder can bring on flare-ups of this condition.

This skin condition develops along a pig’s hindquarters and back, creating painful sores that weep pus and blood. This awful disease also causes weakness in your pig’s back legs. According to research, this disease is hereditary and typically affects younger pigs.

This syndrome gets its name because an infected pig has a temporary loss of use of its hind legs and has to make a “dipping” motion to move. Interestingly, the syndrome does not affect the front legs.

Is Dippity Pig Hereditary? Dippity Pig Syndrome may be hereditary in certain pig breeds.While any pig breed or age can be susceptible to this condition, it appears to be more prevalent in certain genetic lines. Overall, the evidence suggests that there may be a hereditary component to Dippity Pig Syndrome, although further research is needed to understand the genetics behind this condition fully.

It appears to be exacerbated by stress factors. Sunburnds, a trip to the vet, a pig show, new owner, thunderstorms or a change in routine may bring it on. 

Does Dippity Pig Syndrome Go Away?

Dippity Pig Syndrome typically goes away in two to four days. Sometimes it goes away within 24 hours.  There is currently no cure for it, but it can be managed with anti-inflammatory medicine. It often comes on spontaneously and goes away just as mysteriously. 

Spring and summer are the most common times of the year for it to appear. 

How Long Does Dippity Pig Syndrome Last? Dippity Pig usually lasts for between one and three days. It resolves itself on its own, but that usually isn’t a comfort to pig owners. To make matters worse, stress usually brings it on

That’s one of the things that makes Dippity harder for owners to deal with- they might be in the middle of a pig show or a vet visit- exactly the time they don’t want to deal with Dippity. 

Can a pig die from dippity pig syndrome? Pigs cannot die of Dippity Pig, although there are other diseases with similar symptoms that can be deadly. Misdiagnosing an illness as Dippity can be deadly for your pig. 

Fortunately, DIppity Pig doesn’t appear to be contagious. There are no known cases of Dippity spreading from pig to pig or infecting an entire herd. Instead, the disease seems to strike an individual pig spontaneously. It seldom strikes older pigs nor does it strike the same pig twice. 

Symptoms of Dippity Pig

Dippity Pig Syndrome has horrible symptoms such as sudden aggression and loss of weight. Your pig will start developing sores on their backs and sides, further aggravating the itchiness.

You may find that your pig moans and squeals. This syndrome causes a lot of pain and discomfort, which makes your pig unsteady on their feet and not want to eat.

Unfortunately, the pain and itchiness can drive your pig into a panic. Calm your pig down by talking softly to them and playing soothing music.

  • Sores on their back and sides
  • Squealing and moaning from pain
  • Itchiness and scratching
  • Unsteady on their feet
  • Loss of appetite
  • Loss of weight
  • Sudden aggression as a result of the pain

Dippity Pig Treatment

Follow these steps to treat the effects of Dippity Pig syndrome:

Topical hydrocortisone creams (prescribed by a vet) can be applied to your pig’s skin to alleviate the itchiness and pain. Keep your pig well-hydrated and as comfortable as possible. Ease stress from scratching by playing soothing music and keeping your pig as calm as possible.

The symptoms should ease up within two to four days.

  1. Most importantly, you need to calm your pig down. The pain and itchiness from this syndrome cause them to panic. Reduce their stress by playing soft and soothing music.
  2. Apply topical hydrocortisone creams to the infected areas to alleviate the pain and itchiness. Your vet will need to prescribe this medication, as you can’t buy it without a prescription.
  3. Ensure your pig is hydrated and comfortable. Fortunately, this syndrome will only last a couple of days (two to four days).

Dippity Pig FAQs

Can Humans Get Dippity Pig Syndrome? Humans cannot get Dippity Pig Syndrome. Even so, it’s a good idea always to handle your pig with proper cleanliness habits and make sure you wash your hands and clothes after handling an ill pig. 

How Do You Get Rid of Dippity Pig Syndrome? Unfortunately, there aren’t medicines that will cure a pig of Dippity Pig Syndrome, but pigs do get better within a few days. You’ll have to wait for your pig to get better, but you can help by reducing stress factors on the pig such as a change of routine or being separated from its buddies. 



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Albert B

I've been around animals my whole life. I grew up on a hobby farm. I've rescued animals of many species. I've raised some of the rarest chicken breeds on the earth including Nankin Bantams, Yokohama, Sumatra, LaFleche, Sultans, Egyptian Fayoumis, rare colorations of Polish, Chinese Silkies, Proto-Onagadori, and many more. I love farm animals and writing about them is almost as fun as raising them!

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