Bowling Balls For Hogs

Dallas Bowman, Adel, Iowa, is one of a growing number of hog producers who put bowling balls in with their hogs.

Bowman says that while hogs tear up just about anything put into their pens, bowling balls are "virtually indestructible" and provide something for the hogs to do so they don't bite and pick on each other. Bowman notes that the hogs constantly nose the ball around without ever getting it caught in a corner or on a feeder or waterer. He says they also seem to like the noise the ball makes when it rolls over slats.

He puts one ball in each of his 25 by 35-ft. pens. He also puts balls in outside pens. He notes that when the balls are used outside, water some-times freezes in the finger holes and cracks the ball but that they retain their shape and are still useable.

Bowman gets the used and chipped balls free from friends but says many bowling alley owners give away worn out bowling balls.

The idea is catching on so fast that Lage Products Co., Montezuma Iowa, just introduced the "Pig Bowl Ball". It's as hard as a bowling ball and available in 6 and 12-in. dia. sizes.