We got the call this week that an old pig was found, stray, down in a field and unable to walk.
Here is what we think happened...
Uncle Charlie was used at a breeder his whole life. When arthritis set in and he was unable to perform, he was sold for backyard slaughter.
By some miracle, he escaped his killers and his fate. Possibly injured himself in doing so, possibly just exhausted from the stress and chronic pain.
We would like to offer Charlie a different kind of life for the rest of his golden years...one filled with a muddy piggy lagoon, good food, room to root and roam, and lots of love.
He is currently being vetted and given meds to temporarily deal with his pain. He is being neutered and kept for healing for a few more days, and can come home next week.
He will need some long-term solutions to deal with his arthritis, so we will have our vets assist with a product called Adequon which has been used to alleviate or minimize arthritis symptoms in dogs, horses, pigs and goats. The initial treatments are fairly pricey and after that, monthly maintenance, if Adequon proves helpful for his condition.
We also need a major expansion of the pig area, tripling their current space. We made their original pen from cattle panels, which they have damaged quite a bit this year. "Hog panels", the fencing strong enough to adequately keep them in their space, are expensive, but shouldn't require as much maintenance and replacement (and fewer escapes!).
We also need desperately to upgrade the pigs housing, to something that old Uncle Charlie can get in and out of easily, and stay warm.
We would also like to purchase a custom coat for all 600 pounds of him, the cold is hard on arthritis.
Here is what i want to do...
I would like to extend the pig area into an acre of current pasture that has fencing badly needing replaced, taking care of two dire needs at once.
We need some vetting on our current pigs that we have been saving for and managed to raise a good portion at our last fundraiser.
I want to get more temporary housing in place while we build a well insulated concrete pig house that will keep all of the pigs warm in winter and cool in summer.
I have posted our ideal stretch goal to complete this project so that we can respond quickly when urgent pig rescue arises. Often in rescue, time is of the essence to save lives.
But most of all, i want to let Charlie know that their is a life beyond tiny pens and sitting in his own filth. That humans can be kind and loving and that there is a bright warm future ahead.