Thursday, July 1, 2010

George's Story

George arrived in a wire crate in the back of a van a few years ago. The women who contacted me told me a co worker needed him looked after for a few weeks when she lost her job. Story is, she never came back for him. Now this women was reaching out to me to take George and we corresponded by email a few times.

According to this women George was neutered and his house had three sides made up of pieces of leaning plywood with hay inside. My thought was "only three sides?" How did he keep warm in the winter?

To my surprise at about 5 one night a van was outside my driveway. I looked in the back of the van and saw a little pig peering up at me from his confines. I immediatly assured him he would be safe here and knowing he would smell the others I added for him not to worry that i would not let the others get him. I assured him , there was good food here. This would be very important for any pig arriving at my gates to know.

And all the while doing this i was evaluating his condition. He had the distinctive look of a boar , a pig who is not neutered doesn't have that rounded look a neutered male would have in the face. And as I blurted out "he's not neutered" his tusks caught my eyes. Anger swelling up in me i asked her if the tusk on the other side of his face was going threw his cheek too.

Mad now all i wanted to do was get that pig unloaded and crate carried to the empty paddock, and her off my property. She was not as strong as i was and this helped reach my boiling point inside as had of she let me know she was coming and couldn't do this i might of been able to have help here. I wanted that pig out of that crate and all this stop and starting was wasted energy on lifting him and setting him down and adding more stress to this pig.

Once out of the crate her added hay for his comfort must of come out of his old house and its filthy dusty condition would of provided no warmth from where he lived. A dried up french loaf of bread was tossed to him by this women and promises to send some financial support for his care. The offer of a rotten wet bale of hay was declined and i could barley speak to her at this point as she walked up my driveway and back into her van and out of our lives forever.

The following morning volunteers arrived and George rolled over for a belly rub immediately. Giving himself to us this way only hours after arriving showed such trust in his new caregivers. While laying down i fed the wire between his cheek and his tusk and ended his torment in 8 seconds. Blood gushed from his wound and the release of that pressure, the tusk was in threw his mouth almost 1 1/2 inches.

Tusks do not grow over night, this growth took between 1 and 2 years. It would of started rubbing on his cheek when he laid down. Then within a few months it would of started to put pressure on his face causing a white scuff mark up and down his cheeks as he opened and closed his mouth to eat. The pain of it pushing into his face would of started a few months later and as it grew the tusk would tear into his flesh opening the wound wider as he chewed. By the time he arrived this little pig was not able to naturally open his mouth to eat as those tusks and the pain prevented him from being able to do so.

For the first few days with me he refused carrots, every pig loves carrots! Poor George suffering from the inability to eat them , refused them because of the pain it would cause him to eat . It took 3 days for him to realized he could chew and open his mouth all the way without searing pain.

If you click on the picture in the blog it opens the size. You can see how the tusk has rubbed his cheek white from simple opening and then chewing his food. That was the better of the two sides, the other one was right threw his cheek and into his mouth. Basically speared by his own tusk. He has two deep dimples from where they penetrated his flesh. Not all tusks will grow into the cheek, you see it happen a lot with over fed pigs as well as the ones growing inward . (I keep tusks trimmed to prevent them being hung up in wire fencing . And remember when you do trim , trim so the tusks are still poking just outside of the lips and NOT to the gum line. Tusk trimmed incorrectly can cause them to grow into the face or upward into the roof of the mouth. Also NEVER EVER let anyone use breaking pliers to do tusks either. The lower tusks are part of the jaw and more pigs have died this way from hairline fractures. Infection is almost immediate and then death. Jiggley Wire saw only.)

George who comes into the house and manages the stairs only as a pig who was used to doing this at some point in his life. He likes to be covered with blankets, takes his treats so very gently and all of this again is learned from his past experiences. Someone at some point was very good to this pig , but why did they not care about his tomorrows??

Gorgeous George has been threw many experience in his life before arriving here and ones that might of left any one of us with some severe emotional baggage. George however did not loose the goodness within him and is not bitter or angry with humans who betrayed him so terribly. He was able to hold onto his gentle soul and he has flourished.

When your approach George he looks up into your heart with an innocence from his deep brown eyes. They twinkle back at you, and a soft touch to his bristles will have him almost fall over as he lays on his side for a good belly rub. He sings in a rhythmic piggy chant as he oof oof oof's in delight. As he lays all stretched out from deep inside of him a little heavenly whine every now and then in response to shear pleasure that has arrived in his life.

I am so happy your here George so the love in you is free and received with as much pleasure as it is to give it back to you.


Rattie said...

George's beginnings were heartbreaking! But he's so blessed to be with you now. Give him a belly rub for me!

Deanna said...

I have a little pot belly pig and he is growing tusks and my dad said this is okay because he is so tame. The way I see it is that they grow them in the wild so is it so bad to just let them grow? And on diffrent note, how do you trim a pig's feet? I can't wait to here about the new thing in your life.
Your friend:DEANNA

Janice Gillett said...

Will do Rattie Mom!!

Deanna , i have a niece named Deanna ;o) Spelled the same way too!

Hope your Dad read my blog post re tusks ;o))

I will do a post on hooves just for you this week ;o)