I met two pigs today (just called Pigspigspigs because they will be butchered someday).
They were asleep in the shade in their shelter until they were called, though they were slightly indignant we did have more food for them (they weren’t interested in the small, green apples that littered the trough).
“They’ll bite,” Corrie said. Hungrily, I think, not maliciously– I kept my hand flat and my fingers safely out of reach.
I don’t think I’ve ever petted a pig before. We had two when I was very young, but I don’t remember them at all. This was back when my parents were maybe a little bit likey friends: a little hodgepodge farm with a sprinkling of everything, including cats (one walked by, skittered back when the brown sheep vied for my attention, then let me pet it, and then moved on– I have other things to do, you know.)
Those pigs– their snouts were so mobile, so facile. Like a mole’s snout; more finely tuned, by the looks of them, than a dog’s nose.
And their bodies were solid, firm; startling for a creature whose fatty back and ribs taste so delicious.
One pig even wagged its tail the whole time.
I wouldn’t want to butcher them, to go through the process and not only witness it but be honest about where food sometimes comes from.
But if (when) I’m going to eat an animal, I’d much rather know it had a fine and happy life, turning down apples, snuffling at outstretched hands, trotting around in the boreal sun and sleeping in the cool mud.