It happened again. A very sad story has led to me being the proud new owner of 5 new pigs. I went on a 12 hour journey to pick these ones up. Living where no one cared about them, in a small dirt pen with so little human contact that they were scared of everything and serious medical issues went unnoticed.
Here's Todd. He's anywhere between 8 and 15 years old and not fixed. He was going to be killed (for no reason). He's a very sweet guy and is going to be neutered in a week.
This is Grandma. She is also anywhere between 8 and 15 years old and was also going to be killed (for no reason). Although this picture doesn't show it (don't ask me how that happened!!), she is very overweight, limps and is completely blind due to the fat rolls covering her eyes. These are issues that cause her distress and someone who cared at all about these animals would never have let it get to this point.
This is Olivia. She is about a year and a half. She had 6 babies, but 4 of them had been sold by the time I found her. She is underweight and was still in with her 2 male (unfixed and able to breed) babies. She was also in with Todd, who is also unfixed, when we picked her up. Chances are she could be pregnant again. This lady was starved for attention...she follows me everywhere I go.
This is Toopy. Toopy is 12-14 weeks old and wild as wild can be. He's never been touched...his old owners couldn't even tell me...after that much time... whether he was male or female. It's not hard to tell...by just looking into the pen. Just shows how much attention was given to these pigs. We have been able to hold Toopy and his brother and get them into a harness after the first week...but they are not happy with it yet.
This is Binoo. Binoo is Toopy's brother. He has 4 front feet (that the straw in the picture is hiding well), possibly caused by his mom's malnutrition during pregnancy. He's smaller than Toopy and just as wild. They are both going in next week to be neutered and we will see what the vet says about his 2 extra feet. If they will cause him problems as he grows, we will have them removed.
Here is them arriving at their new home after a long drive. This picture (first) of Grandma shows her fat a little better. She's the one on the left, Todd is on the right. I really don't know how she looked so much slimmer in the last picture...but I wish I could bottle that photo genius that I obviously posses!! ;)
I am sure that the people who sold/gave these pigs to this home probably felt like they were going to a good home. Most people do not intentionally give an animal to someone they think will abuse or neglect it (although some people just don't care). People who have no business owning an animal of any kind can make themselves sound like the perfect owners for the few minutes that you are speaking to them. It happens all the time. Please keep this in mind, both when you are considering getting a pot bellied pig/piglet and when you are trying to rehome one. Chances are this is the type of place they will end up if it doesn't work out with you. They are NOT easy to rehome as adults. If they are lucky, they will stay in a sad place like this until someone involved in rescue comes to get them before they are killed or sent to another equally sad existence....and then if they are lucky, they will stay there until someone involved in rescue comes to get them before they are killed or sent to another equally bad existence......
All it would take to stop this is to do your research before bringing one home. Make sure you know all the difficult parts of pig ownership that breeders forget to tell you. Adopt from a rescue if you decide that a pig is for you. If you take away the demand of these precious babies, you take away the supply (more and more being produced for profit). You get a wonderful friend, who is fixed and socialized and you get ongoing support from people who care deeply for the pig you take home, and you save a life. It's a win/win situation.
***If you are from Alberta, check out the Potbelly Pig Rehoming Network on Facebook if you are interested in adopting.***