*Please note this post was originally published in August 2009

I set off this morning to take the dogs out over the forest. It was a lovely day and I was checking the blackberries and looking at the apple trees, not long now before I pick a few for my mincemeat.

So there I am, happily walking along when I heard the most awful screaming and one of my dogs was going beserk, stamping at the ground and generally freaking out! My first thought was that the dog had found an injured bird but when I got closer it turned out to be a teeny little piglet!

I picked it up and it was very cold so I set off back home with it.. well I couldn’t just leave it!

I arrived back home and started wrapping it up in warm towels and blankets. Tim looked at me in amazement and said it makes a change from me coming home with bags of blackberries or nettles!

Here’s a picture of the pig when I first got home. I did wonder whether it would survive.

lost piggy

lost piggy

We warmed some baby formula milk and offered it to the piggy in a baby bottle. It must have been starving poor thing as it guzzled it down hungrily.

hungry piggy

hungry piggy

Then it went to sleep for half an hour and woke up and had more milk. By this time its colour had returned and it was as warm as toast so we unwrapped it from its blankets and put it on the floor. It was soon walking around the room, having a good sniff at everything and really perking up.

We sat on the floor with it and it was running around, snorting away and having a good time! It really enjoyed climbing over our legs and poking its head out as if to say ‘hi’ then running back the other way!

playful piggy

playful piggy

By now it was late afternoon. I had not heard back from the RSPCA even though I had rang them twice. I left the kids ‘pigsitting’ and went off to the local farms to try and locate its owner. I soon found the lady he belonged to. It turns out that Peter (ok I know, never name your food!) was quiet and not feeding properly the day before so the owner had given him medication and when he wasn’t there at headcount this morning she assumed he had just gone off to die as animals often do. The last thing she expected was to hear that he was bombing around my front room playing hide and seek!

So I went back home, collected Peter the pig and took him back to his Mum. He has a lovely shed with plenty of open field to run about in. His owner is a lovely lady who believes in the old fashioned caring ways of farming. She even gave me a bag of sausages for my trouble!

Now I actually found it quite hard setting off to find the pigs owner. What if it had escaped an intensive farming barn? I hate animal cruelty and I think I would have pushed the RSPCA to find it a petting farm or something. I certainly couldn’t have taken it back to a cruel home. For a few moments I let my mind wander to raising the pig myself and letting it play in my garden. That wasn’t realistic of course.

I’m glad I met the lady owner. I felt ok giving him back to her. I know the animals fate. I also know when. I am a meat eater and I can’t see that changing but I only eat meat that has been raised well and in a respectful way.

I hope Peter pulls through this. He seemed to be laughing when I tickled his chin. I won’t be back in contact with his owner to find out. I’ll just make up my own happy ending.