A Valley pig sanctuary is looking for forever homes for abandoned pigs or those given up by their owners.
“At least one pig, yeah, in need of re-homing a day,” said Matt Gosselink, owner of Better Piggies Rescue.
He started the organization last year after noticing postings online from pig owners looking to re-home their pigs. He also began seeing more and more pigs being abandoned.
“We really find them all over the Valley,” Gosselink said. “Somebody will get a pig for Christmas, and 5-6 months later it’s starting to get big now.”
He says people think they’re getting a micro pig.
“There’s really no such thing as a micro mini pig. Typically a potbellied pig is between 75 and 130 pounds,” Gosselink said.
He says people get overwhelmed and don’t know what to do with them. While some will call him to pick them up, others just leave them out.
“She was just abandoned. The family moved out of the state, and they just left her behind,” he said as he described one of the pigs he’s currently looking after.
Just last week he picked up another that was found wandering around in the triple-digit heat. Pigs, he says, don’t have sweat glands so they can succumb to heat exhaustion very quickly.
The summer months bring an influx because that’s when these pigs begin growing. People receiving these pigs as pets thinking they’re getting a small pet are in for a big surprise when they realize it’s not what they signed up for.
It’s also becoming a problem because Better Piggies Rescue is at capacity, and they’re trying to find them a forever home.
He says he hopes people think twice before investing in a pig.
Gosselink adds they’re very low-maintenance animals and once they get into a routine they are easy to take care of. But, he encourages everyone to do their research before taking one home.