Poor, poor George.
If you haven’t ‘liked’ me on Facebook, you may want to. I tend to throw things up on my Facebook page that I don’t have time to write an entire blog post about. Or things that I want to get out immediately. Or pictures I love and can’t wait to share. Or things that I’m just too lazy to reconfigure and resize and redo for the blog.
My Facebook page is a little less polished. A little more raw. And a little more spontaneous.
If you Follow my Facebook page you will also tend to know about happenings 2 weeks before they hit the blog. This is because 2 weeks happens to be ‘real time’ in my world. 2 weeks is how long it takes me to get everything that’s going on written, edited and published.
I suppose if I didn’t have a husband, 4 kids to home-school, a farm, and a Pawnshop I could publish things faster. But, this is my life right now.
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If you have been to my Facebook page, you already know that George tried to die last week. If you haven’t been to my Facebook page, you are probably hearing this for the first time.
It was a sunny, hot, humid near 100 degree day. That night the temperatures dropped into the 50’s. This is a recipe for pneumonia in potbelly pigs. George came down with a bad case. He was having a hard time moving air and would not eat. Not eating is not normal for George.
George was sick.
George was miserable.
George was saying, “Hoink” instead of “Oink.”
I made a quick trip to the animal pharmacy (also known as the feed store, supply store, and hardware store). Got some supplies for potbelly pig pneumonia and rushed back home to give George his first of 5 injections.
George did not want an injection.
George has no harness.
George has no collar.
George has no neck.
George is 200 pounds of pure muscle.
By the way, did I ever mention that I got George’s papers? Did I mention that George had papers?
I did and he does.
Yes, he’s official.
We learned quite a bit about George when his papers showed up. Here’s a few notable facts and figures:
- His name isn’t George, it’s Hamlet. The guy who gave us George told us his name was George. I didn’t want to call him George, or Hamlet for that matter; I wanted to name him “Pumba.” But, since he was already named, we stuck with George – which turns out isn’t even his name. Hamlet is.
- “Hamlet” is only supposed to be fed 1/2 Cup of food a DAY! 1/4 a cup in the morning and 1/4 a cup in the evening. I’m pretty sure George would die on 1/2 Cup of food a day.
- He is a Juliana Micro-mini Potbelly Pig. Did you hear that? I said, “MICRO-MINI.” My 200 pound potbelly pig is a MICRO-MINI…. Right.
- Hamlet’s adult weight was specified as 30-50 pounds. By now, I’m sure you all know George’s weight (it’s 200 pounds for those who aren’t paying attention). Let’s all stop right there for a minute and take that in. Don’t blame me for over feeding him…… he came here huge. I just saved him from becoming sausage.
- He has a license number, a vet, vaccinations & immunization certificates. This is more than can be said for most of the cats living around here.
The 200 pound, giant hog living in my front yard is a Juliana micro-mini potbelly who is supposed to eat 1/2 cup of food a day, weigh 30-50 pounds and be named Hamlet. Exactly.
My Juliana, micro-mini, potbelly pig is well-fed, happy and huge.
Back to the shot………..
I thought since he was barely moving and having trouble breathing that he would be an easy patient. Nope. As soon as he saw me coming with the syringe he had a sudden burst of energy. George was still struggling to breathe, but running from us just the same.
There is no way to grab on to George and hold him still and give him a shot.
George outweighs me by quite a bit.
So we called for reinforcements. When I called DH at the Pawnshop to tell him George was dying and needed a shot it just so happened that the guy we got George from was standing in the Pawnshop. Weird right? I call it providential. Thank you, Lord.
J (that’s his name) was heading home and would be driving near our place and said he & his wife would be happy to help us inject George.
The plan was for J to grab George by the back legs, flip him over sit on him, and hold him still so I could give him the shot.
I’m not going to even tell you how that went. Negative.
So, we went with Plan B.
Get George in a cage. Once in a cage I could shoot medicine into my wheezing, sick, enormous, Juliana micro-mini Potbelly pig any time I wanted.
First we had to herd George into a tight spot. Once we had him cornered it wasn’t too difficult to get him into the cage.
He took a wagon ride to the smaller pig pasture. I wanted to get him away from the other 7 pigs (just in case he was contagious).
We kept him in the shade in his cage for a couple of days. Why?
- Catching a pig is impossible. If you manage to catch him & get the injection into him the first time, I promise you it probably won’t happen again.
- Giving a pig a shot is impossible. Pigs don’t like shots. Neither do Jerseys, by the way.
- George needed rest.
While in the cage George got plenty of R&R, I was able to give him his shots twice daily and no one had to catch a pig.
He had plenty of food and water available.
The 2 days were over in no time and George was back to his perky “Oinking” self.
BUT…….. George was soooooo lonely! He has been living in Pig-Wonderland with his woman (Polly) and the 6 feeder pigs since spring. You would think he would enjoy a little peace and quiet; and look at that beautiful grass. He had it made.
Nope. He was not a happy pig. If we were anywhere near his little pen he would pace the fence line and oink at us. Not his usual “OINK!” ….. “OINK!”
It was more of: “OINK!OINK!OINK!OINK!OINK!OINK!OINK!OINK!OINK!OINK!OINK!”
After 3 days of continual oinking, we had to do something to console George. He didn’t need shots. He didn’t need food. He didn’t need water. He didn’t need love and affection. He needed a woman.
We loaded up his enormous, giant, fat, pregnant (we think), potbelly girlfriend…….IN THE RAIN and delivered her to him.
The pics are blurry because it was POURING.
Oh the things I do for my animals…….. Wet. wet. wet.
Happy is not the word. We have an overjoyed, ecstatic, 200 pound Juliana micro-mini potbelly pig.
George has a new home, can breathe again and has his woman with him. Life is good.
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