In Memory Of Nigel the Pig

A primary motivator in the goal of establishing the Have A Heart Farm Emergency Transport & Foster Care Sanctuary is to have a site to immediately transport animals to who we are alerted about who are in imminent danger of losing their lives.

One example is little Nigel the pig..

Our rescue network was contacted by people who said they had found a pig and attempts to find his home were unsuccessful. They asked us to place him. We were in ongoing contact with them while we worked on placement. We had secured placement in a few weeks and told them that we were finalizing transport and that we’d be finalizing an actual transport date with them in a few days. They said they were fine with that and that the pig was doing well though they were anxious to move him on and relieved that we were down to making the actual transport date.

When we contacted them again a few days later, we were told that the day before, police had confiscated him on behalf of the landlord, who had received complaints from building residents that they had heard grunting coming from the apartment and had suspected a pig was there. To make a long story short, I contacted police to find where they had taken him, and told them that we had placement for him. The police had no idea what I was talking about and said they had no farmed animal confiscation on their recent reports at all, but gave me the name of an animal hospital they said he would have been taken to if they had actually confiscated him. He wasn’t at the hospital. I contacted other police depts. and hospitals and came up with nothing. In questioning the people further who had contacted us to place the pig (who was given the name Nigel via our rescue network), they then acknowledged that they had fabricated the story – there had been no landlord complaints, no police involved, and no confiscation – that they had taken him to a ‘farm’ themselves. They then cut off contact and refused to tell us where Nigel was, or what had been done with him, though we can surmise.

The initial fact here is that if our emergency transport and foster care sanctuary had been established, we would have been able to immediately transport him and provide foster care for him as soon as we were first asked to help, while we worked on a forever home. Even though we made arrangements fairly quickly for him, all things considered, and the people assuring us that he was fine while we worked on it, having to delay at all due to having to secure a foster care placement even before arranging transport likely was a major factor in his surmised demise as obviously the people involved on the other end were not being truthful and we surmise that they found someplace who would buy him for slaughter. Many people are not aware that both farmed and pot belly pigs (who many just think of as ‘pets’) are sold for slaughter. With a foster care sanctuary established, we could have told them right away when they first contacted us that we had a site for him and transport would have been done within a few days. Undoubtedly, there are many other animals like Nigel who ‘disappear’ due to lack of an immediate foster care site to move them to while forever home placements are worked on.

It is in memory of Nigel that we work to establish an emergency site for other animals in immediate need. It it through the animals that such a site will help in the future that the memory of a little pig will be honored who would likely be alive and well today had we had already had the sanctuary established.