Pet Tales

Pot-bellied pigs happily rooting in Atascadero

pettales@thetribunenews.comMay 16, 2013 

Elaine, left, and Kramer, right, enjoy their forever home with their owner Meg Korgan.

COURTESY PHOTO

Meg Korgan of Atascadero sent in a story about her pigs Kramer and Elaine.

“I have a pig that talks to me. No, I may be a little eccentric, but I am not crazy.

“I love animals. I love to rescue them. I love how much they appreciate me saving them. I love how they never ask for money, never roll their eyes at me when told ‘no’ and don’t ask to borrow the family car. I mostly love how much they love me back unconditionally.

“Kramer came from San Luis Obispo Animal Services about seven years ago. Sometimes when driving up Highway 1, I will stop to see who is there. I have found perfect matches for friends who didn’t even know they were looking for a dog. I have adopted dogs, cats and even roosters from Animal Services.

“So much to my surprise, I spotted Kramer. He had been there for several months. He seemed harmless, although extremely large. Never have I owned a pig, let alone thought about it. Being a bit of a spur-ofthe-moment kind of woman, and Shirlee, who works behind the counter, a quite persuasive woman, I decided to take Kramer home.

“Pot-bellied pigs have the intelligence of a3-year-old. Most times this is wonderful, but don’t forget 3-yearolds are sometimes irrational, stubborn, and don’t do what they’re told. When I bring Kramer his nightly meal, he always thanks me with a polite ‘oink oink.’ I swear, it sounds just like ‘thank you!’ When it is hot outside and I ask him how he is, he groans and moans as if to say ‘get rid of this heat, I am miserable.’

“A couple of years ago, I rescued Kramer a wife. I promptly named her Elaine. For a month, Elaine lived in her separate house inside the pasture. Then one day, I spotted her with Kramer. Mind you, Kramer likes to sleep against the wall of his house, snuggled up against the blankets. Elaine had promptly moved him over, and now sleeps on ‘his side of the bed.’ They remind me of an old married couple. He grumbles at her if she gets a larger dinner, she steals all the blankets every night, and when one of them isn’t feeling well, the other moves into separate quarters for a couple of days.

“Before you consider rescuing a pot-bellied pig, please be aware, pot-bellied pigs DO NOT come in small sizes. The ones advertised as micro have been starved. The average miniature pot-bellied pig weighs between 120 to 200 pounds and takes two to four years to full maturity. Pigs are wonderful creatures, but they are not for the weak. Without enough attention they can become grumpy, aggressive and depressed. Their high intelligence can overwhelm an owner without experience.

“Kramer and Elaine make me laugh every day. They even smile.”

“Cats look down on you, dogs look up to you. Only a pig treats you as an equal.” — Winston Churchill

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Upcoming animal-related events in the county:

Kitten Baby Shower

The North County Humane Society is celebrating the arrival of kittens by hosting a Baby Shower Open House from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday. Bring the kittens a gift or cash donation and receive a raffle ticket to win a gift basket. Free finger food and bottled water will be available to our guests. North County Humane Society is at 2300 Ramona Road in Atascadero. Call 466-5403 for information and items needed.

Dog Park Coffee Social

Vineyard Dog Park will hold a coffee social from 9 to 11 a.m. Saturday. Participants can watch and cheer the 200 motorcyclists who will be stopping at the park along the route for the American Cancer Society Relay for Life event. There will be coffee, pastries, juice. The riders are scheduled to arrive about 10:30 a.m. The coffee social is free, but donations are appreciated. For more information, visit http://www.parks4pups.org .

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