Sunday, June 5, 2011

Piggy Royale

I can't believe it...Today, this little piggy went whee-whee-whee, all the way home with ME!  I love Craigslist.  Al my best stuff comes from ads I find there.  Emma Bean, Sienna, most of my furnishings, and (last but not least) John...

A lovely couple in Aromas advertised 11 week old 7/8  Gloucestershire Old Spot piglets for sale.  One almost never finds these rare and heritage breeds in California, much less in my neighborhood, so I rushed to answer the ad, and today, John and I went out to pick her up.

She's a beauty.

The smallest of the ones available and she still weighs about 50 pounds!  She can be bred when she's about 250 pounds, and can get up to 500 pounds. Yipes!  These are said to be the preferred pork of the royal family, which has kept them from extinction.  Hey, if it's good for the royals, it's good for me!  Our plan will be to take her back to Aromas (in a couple hundred pounds) to be bred, then harvest her and start over with one of her piglets. This little piggy was one of 16 born to her mama! WoW!

When we first got to the farm in Aromas, we were greeted by a gang of dogs.  The 5 of them charged down the driveway, then started wagging their tails and licking our hands. 

There were 3 pups that looked a lot like this, and their mom and dad. When the couple came out to meet us, I said that they were adorable, but not much for guard dogs.  
They surprised me by saying, "want another dog?"  I laughed and John said, "Nooo.." Darn!

We all went down to the pig sty to choose a piglet, and all the dogs followed.  As we talked and I tried to choose (So much harder than I would have thought!) I petted the dogs. The pups were so sweet and cuddly. Especially since these are working dogs. English Collies (I think they said)
who are really useful in keeping their cows and pigs in line, but not as hyper as come herding dogs I have seen. These guys are 5 months old.  
They offered the pups a few more times in conversation, but I really thought they were kidding until the end when she said,"if it doesn't work out, we'll take him back. We just want them to have good homes..."

Ok, if you know me at all, you know how this ends...
I say, "seriously, John, I want one."
He says, "no"
Lather, rinse, repeat a few times until we are headed home with this sweet face asleep on my lap, and a 50 pound piglet in the dog crate!  We are calling him Sam (Sammy for short), and Ms.Piggy Royale is now known as Olivia.

I know, I know....crazy.  But, oh my god he is so sweet!  He is a little shy (I passed on the outgoing cutie-pie, hoping to better my odds of him getting along with the other 2 dogs) and follows me so closely, I'm not even sure he's there. Perfect step, not tripping me up like SOME other dogs do.  He has barked at a few signs of danger, isn't trying to kill the cats, and all 3 dogs are getting along great!  I don't know how these things happen to me. It is just some wonderful, strange luck!  Tomorrow begins summer Farm Camp and now I have even more animals to share and teach the kids about!

Who knows, with Ginger looking like this today, the kids and I may be assisting a live birth!


  1. You need a herding dog more than most people I know. She reminds me of a blond version of my childhood border collie.

    I just saw the ad for the piglets. That's a great price for piglets, too! Congratulations on your great find! Craigslist really is an amazing place.

  2. You lucky girl! Pig AND a pup! I will be interested in hearing all about the pig in future posts. (pup too)