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Pig Adopted Chick

Dec. 28, 2004
The Arizona Republic

Walt bought Treyf, our potbellied pig, from a pen in New River when she was 12 weeks old. She lived in the house and thought she was one of the dogs, running to the front door and barking with the rest of the pack when someone rang the bell.

She loved to sleep with Walt, curled into him as he napped. She would let him hold her on his lap, while he rubbed her belly, and would fall asleep on her back like that, in a very unpiglike fashion.

Although she was a pig and binged from time to time, she remained svelte, and if you gave her a peanut in the shell, she would daintily spit out the shell, eating only the meat.

We had some newly hatched chickens out back, and when we had to separate one that was blind, Treyf adopted the chick and would kneel down to let the chick climb onto her back. They spent every day walking around like that: Treyf with the chicken (eventually a rooster) on her back. A seeing-eye pig?

Ken White, a former director of the Arizona Humane Society, heard about her and came out to our home to interview Treyf. He wrote a column about her for The Arizona Republic, proclaiming her to be "one hell of a pig."

She died in February, at the age of 10*, when a presumed intestinal blockage was discovered to be a belly full of tumors. When we gathered around, weeping, to say our goodbyes to this unusual pig who became such an integral part of our family and our lives, Walt kissed her and tenderly whispered, "Thank you, Treyf." Her death has left a hole in our lives and our hearts.

- Maxine and Walt Piper, Scottsdale

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