About 30 miles outside of Columbia, South Carolina, there exists a place where, at long last, man and pig may live in harmony. In the forward-thinking utopia of the Cotton Branch Farm Sanctuary in Leesville, SC, human beings need no longer fear the social ramifications of cuddling up on a hog and telling it that it’s the best, most intelligent little animal in the whole wide world. Heck, the behavior is encouraged.
According to the local newspaper The State, that’s because the nonprofit has recently taken in roughly one hundred pigs, and they’re now trying to socialize the grunty darlings in an attempt to make them viable pets and not third-act-of-Hannibal set pieces.
Go hog wild
The pigs, which Cotton Branch Farm Sanctuary recently rescued from an animal hoard, are being groomed as household pets. It’s with this noble goal in mind that the shelter tossed up a Facebook post on January 23rd asking for volunteer “piggy cuddlers” to help acclimate their new wards to an environment filled with human affection. Potential sooey altruists are being asked to sit with the pigs, scratch their bellies, feed them cookies, and talk with the critters. Unspoken but wordlessly implied, they will also be required to basically explode on Instagram.
The sanctuary, which WTLX described as providing “a safe home for abandoned, abused, elderly and disabled farm animals,” came into possession of 550 pigs about 14 months ago. At this point, roughly 450 of them have been adopted by new homes. According to farm president Josh Carpenter-Costner, “They make good indoor, outdoor pets. They love being outside, but they are much quicker to house train than a dog. It could be a farm scenario or it could also be a house… As long you have about a quarter acre space, a good size yard for them to enjoy and don’t mind rooting they’re fine.”
If you’re interested in adding “pig cuddler” to the special skills section of your resume, or in saving an animal’s bacon by adopting a pig of your very own, you can contact the shelter through their website.
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