A pig named Sweety who thought she was a chicken…

by frogpondsrock on May 10, 2009

in environmental stuff,On my soapbox,real life,Sadness

I arrived home one afternoon to find Jeffrey quite excited and a bit puffed out as well. Apparently a piglet had wandered into our yard and Jeffrey was so overcome by visions of roast suckling pig that he had spent quite a bit of energy trying unsuccessfully to catch the piglet.I started to have a bit of a look as well but there wasn’t any sign of a piglet at all. So we just threw extra chook food about the place hoping the piglet would return.

At first light the next morning I looked out the bathroom window and there was the pig eating the chook pellets. My first thought was, mmm tasty. My second thought was, she is far too small to eat, there is only enough meat on her for a good sized roast. I crept out onto the balcony gently calling,  “here pig pig pig, here piggy pig pig.” She took one look at me and scooted back into the bush. So I threw half a loaf of bread out to where she had been eating and went back inside to wait.

It didn’t take long for the chooks to discover the bread and once the pig saw the chooks eating away merrily, she came out of hiding. I told Jeffrey that the pig was back and that there was no way he was allowed to kill her as she was far too small to eat yet. She was about the size of a fat corgi and probably about 3 months old.

The chooks were a bit nervy around the piglet but she seemed relieved to finally have some company and started to follow them around. My chooks were totally free range at this stage because I generally forgot to lock them up of a night, so the piglet moved into the hen-house as well.

After about two weeks the pig was totally at home here and would come when I called because she  knew that I meant food. She was still very wary of Jeff and Dave and quite frightened of Harry the dog. She had totally bonded with the chooks, though they weren’t quite sure what to make of her.

I named her Sweety because she was such a little sweety and because it is also an easy name to call out Sweeeeeteeeee.

Six months later  it was time to eat Sweety. I hadn’t fed her that morning and everytime she saw me come outside she would run up to me and snicker at me for her breakfast.When it was time for the men to kill her I took out a bucket of food for her and she followed me to the killing tree. Sweety was grunting happily into her breakfast with no thoughts in her sweet piggy brain other than “mmm breakfast yummo” when she was quickly killed.

A friend later commented that Sweety must have been the unluckiest pig on earth to wander into our yard.

I disagree.

Sweety lived a happy free range life. She was never locked up once and grew big enough so that Harry the dog was frightened of her. She had a lovely big wallow, a mixture of pasture and bush to free range in and she slept in the chook pen in an old water tank filled with hay. She truly thought she was a chook and spent most of her time laying in the sun with two old hens. She would get very excited and squeal with glee when I watered the fruit trees because she absolutely loved to be squirted with the hose.

Sweety lived a happy life. She was also delicious.

This is one of the reasons that the absolutely appalling images of the factory farmed pigs that I wrote about yesterday upset me so much.

That we allow intelligent friendly animals to be kept in horrendous conditions so that we can have cheap pork absolutely appalls me. As I said to Jayne I have put a few extra nails in my soapbox because I expect to be standing on it for quite some time.

Now my lovelies you can help if you want to. You can copy/paste this letter that I have pinched from Veronica and email it to Woolworths.

Dear Woolworths,

I am horrified to see how out of touch Woolworths is with its suppliers that it takes trespassing activists to let the company know about the sickening conditions of the pigs in your suppliers’ care that has come to light recently.

If you think a list of suggested improvements and a follow up once a fortnight is an appropriate response you are deluded. People are incensed about this! I would be on their doorstep daily if I valued my reputation and animal welfare meant anything to me apart from brand image.

I think the company has under-estimated how much this has and will continue to tarnish your reputation. I am shocked that this is how the company wants to be seen.

I myself will not be buying pork products from Woolworths until you can satisfy me that they are being ethically produced in a humane environment.

Sincerely

[Your Name Here]

Woolworths contact form.

You can click over to Animals Australia and have a look there or you can go over to SaveBabe.com and help them out.

Now for the record I am not telling people to become vegetarians because I am a deadset carnivore. I am simply asking that you think about where your supermarket meat actually comes from. If just one person asks their local supermarket where they source their meat I will be a happy camper.

Cheers Kim