A sty or pigsty is a small-scale outdoor enclosure for raising domestic pigs as livestock. It is sometimes referred to as a hog pen, hog parlor, pigpen, pig parlor, or pig-cote, although pig pen may refer to pens confining pigs that are kept as pets as well. Pigsties are generally fenced areas of bare dirt and/or mud. "Sty" and "pigsty" are used as derogatory descriptions of dirty, messy areas, the word sty deriving from the Proto-German stijan meaning filthy hovel.[1] There are three contributing reasons that pigs, generally clean animals, create such a living environment:

  • Pigs are voracious eaters and will eat all the plants in the enclosure until there is nothing left to control erosion.
  • The pig will naturally root and dig for food in the enclosure, further disturbing the soil.
  • Pigs do not regulate temperature by sweating[2] which means that they must be provided with water or mud in which they can control their own body temperature.
Pigsty – Museum of Country Life in Wallonia in Saint-Hubert (Belgium)
Pigsty in Vampula, Finland
Model of toilet with pigsty (see pig toilet), China, Eastern Han dynasty, 25–220 CE

A large-scale enclosure for raising pigs is generally called a hog lot. Unlike a sty which would be found on a mixed farm, a hog lot is usually a dedicated facility.

A locked enclosure with confined/restricted movement & freedom to exercise, is known as a boar-stall. Although, according to some experts forced immobilization was believed to elevate cortisol.

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