The tale of the pig who got stuck

On the homestead there are some amusing lessons to be learned and sometimes you have no choice other than to learn them.  These unexpected moments can make for the best stories. I know a few of ours have spread from acreage to acreage in our neighborhood. The tale of the pig who got stuck is one of my favorite stories. I got to be a sort of hero to one of our pigs.

Let me begin by explaining why the pig was underneath the shelter to start with. We built the pigs a really nice shelter. It was a brand new, clean, spacious, filled with straw; a comfy pad for pigs. They decided that they preferred to lounge underneath the shelter, rather than in it. This was fine by us. We got used to watching them all pop out from beneath the shelter in the morning when we called them for breakfast.

It was a hot day and they had all retreated to the “under shelter hideout” to have their after breakfast snooze.  I was busy doing other chores and Ryan had gone to visit a neighbor. A while later I was walking past the pigs area and I noticed that three of the pigs were happily foraging in the pasture and one pig was lying halfway in/out of the shelter. I didn’t think much of this at the time. It wasn’t until an hour later when I came back to refill their wallow that I noticed that the pig was still there and thought to myself that something was amiss.

He noticed me noticing him and made a grand display of trying to get out. He heaved, and squirmed and squealed and wiggled, but nothing. He was stuck tight. The poor guy took a deep breath and stuck his chin on the ground. He looked at me woefully, tired out from his efforts to escape.

These pigs were my husband’s, on all accounts. He fed, tended and hung out with them a lot more than I did.  I wasn’t really sure how to proceed safely but I had to do something for the poor pig. Ryan would be gone for hours and I was home alone.

I examined the situation looking for some kind of obvious and easy solution to this problem. The pig tried again to free himself. He did not budge. Not even a little bit. We stared at each other for a few moments. I took a deep breath, got down on my knees, put my arms around him and pushed, pulled and tried to wiggle him out.  It was fruitless. This pig was well and truly stuck. To make matters worse the other pigs had sensed that something was going on. They came to investigate, getting in the way of the rescue.

It became obvious that my first plan was not going to work.  A new plan needed to be hatched.  I considered the merits and safety of using a jack to lift the building when the hose that I had left hanging on the fence post caught my eye.  An idea started to form. Why not eh? I watered down the whole area, really soaking the ground until the dirt became slick. I watered the pig as well. He remained very still while I completed this task, fully supporting the plan. He waited until I turned off the hose and shouted “come on piggie!” He wriggled and squirmed with all his might and to my great relief, he slid out from underneath the building. There was a bit of scraping of skin against wood as his body emerged, but there he was free at last. The solution was akin to greasing your finger when your fingers are swollen and your ring gets stuck.

I was extremely relieved to have this situation remedied. The pig was happy and back to his favorite hobby of eating almost immediately.   I was so proud when Ryan came home and I had taken care of business. I felt like a farmer that day. That was also the last day that the pigs slept under the shelter. They are such smart creatures.

And there you have it: the tale of the pig who got stuck

Have you ever had a pig get itself into a difficult predicament? Tell us about it. We love a good pig story!

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