SAUK RAPIDS  - Racing pigs were "hamming it up" for Benton County fairgoers on Wednesday afternoon.

"The pigs see me pulling up in the trailer and they get excited and start squealing. They know they get a chance to get out and run: they enjoy running," L.A. Pig Racing Show owner Gary Dauer says.

Dauer has been racing pigs for around 12 years, he raises the pigs in Leader, Minnesota and has a race track at the Bears Den Bar and Grill.

Dauer travels across the country to fairs and city events for the show. He says it takes weeks to train the pigs, that they call “little pork chops”.

"They're about 18-pounds, very tiny. After they get up to 45-50 pounds, I like to refer to them as teenagers: because they don't listen anymore. So, then I have to trade them in for tiny ones again."

The pigs are trained to start running with music and a bell, they’re rewarded with a treat at the end of the track.

"They love donuts and oreo cookies and sometimes just regular pig food," Dauer says.

The pig racing show also features games between races for both kids and adults. Some of the events include hula hooping, jump roping, bouncy balls and sack races. Dauer says his favorite part of the show is getting the crowd involved and pumped up.

If you missed the racing pigs on Wednesday, you can also catch them on Thursday at Noon, 2:00 p.m. and 4:00 p.m. The races are in the fair activity area.


Dan DeBaun, WJON