Thursday, November 1, 2012

RIP Arnold Swartzenhogger

Arnold Swartzenhogger
It was about 8 years ago, when Fulton County Animal Services called and left a message. They found a large pig that was unclaimed. They would have to euthanize if they couldn't find a place for him. I only had one pig, Annie, at the time, so I agreed to take him. Annie is sweet and loving so I didn't expect anything different from another pig. 

The animal control officer told me they found him wandering the streets terrorizing local residents. When I saw him, it was easy to see why everyone was scared of him. He was a couple of hundred pounds of a white hog looking animal with large tusks . He surely resembled a wild boar. If any human approached him, he would scream. An adult pig screaming is loud, low a sort of growling, like "I am going to eat you" sound. I can imagine people running into to him in the street and hearing him then running the other way. Both pig and human scared to death. It took while for 5 men to catch him in a stall at animal control. He was just as afraid as the humans he met on the street. People must have thrown things at him trying to make him go away and teased him as well. It was sad to see the mental condition he was in, as well as his physical appearance. He was filthy, covered with ticks and his skin looked like he had poor nutrition.We finally managed to get him by wrapping him in a tarp and everyone picking it up and pushing him into the trailer. Once I got back to the farm, he was too frightened to get off the trailer. It took a couple of brave volunteers to help push him down the ramp of the trailer. He sounded so ferocious. 

I named him Arnold Swartzenhogger. The goal was to get him in great condition, all muscle, like the other Arnold of movie fame. This was our movie star! Everyday, I would approach him, as I got closer, he would let out a loud cry of fear. Eventually I could gently touch him and he learned it was good to be at the rescue farm. His health improved, his tusks were removed and he became Annie's BFF. 

 Arnold became very gentle. He was an older pig but no way to tell his age. Now an older gentleman, our Arnold. 

In the past few months, Arnold lost weight and seemed to become arthritic. Volunteers had to actually lift in up so he could stand. He lost interest in food. He was deteriorating and he quality of life was decreasing fast. You can see he lost his muscle. I was time to help him gently cross the Rainbow Bridge. Finding a veterinarian that knows how to gently euthanize a pig turned out to be difficult but after 20 phone calls, two of our equine vets agreed to the sad task. 

Rest In Peace Arnold Swartzenhogger.

You will be missed, you were very loved. We shed tears for all animals here when we lose them. We are honored he came to us and stayed so long. He brought understanding about pigs to all who knew him. These are gently souls and deserve to be treated with dignity and respect. 


Anonymous said...

thank you for the inspiring to hear courageous tales of humans being so paitent with nature's kids....lots of pain and fear to absolve/dissolve in order to find real peace....much appreciation...

Anonymous said...

Oh, but you did such a good thing for him. How good that he spent out his years at a loving home instead of dying frightened and unloved at the hands of strangers. You showed him love...the best gift we have to give.