Friday, November 25, 2011

A passing

Our 18-year-old potbellied pig, Bud, died in the wee morning hours of Thanksgiving. He was very, very old, and feeble. He enjoyed his food right up until almost the end. In half an hour the cremation guy will be by to pick him up. In a couple of weeks the ashes will be back and we'll have a little ceremony, burning sweet sage, and scatter Bud beneath the cedars in our side yard.

I wrote a few vignettes years ago about Bud. Here's the first:

My friend Nalyn got a pig first. She'd brought it to visit us and we were all enthralled by the little pig exploring the living room and rooting instinctively in our hands. The teenagers begged us to get one too. We laughed. We already had a cat that no one wanted to feed.

A week later, Nalyn stopped by again. This time she had an apple box in her arms. The box squeaked. She put it on the floor and opened the lid. Inside was a four-week-old black piglet with a pink nose. He must have weighed about six pounds. He immediately tipped over the box, clambered out, and set off on his own exploration. I found some cat food in the kitchen, then called the piglet. He came to me. The teenagers were thrilled. They begged to keep him.

I am pretty cautious about acquiring pets. We had NO idea what a pig ate or what its habits were. Nalyn assured us that a pig's care was easy. She told us about a vet in Woodinville who specializes in potbellied pigs. We were faintly encouraged. We agreed to keep him overnight and see how it went.

I set up a makeshift bed in the bathroom and found bowls for water and food, while the piglet entertained the kids in the living room. When I returned, the kids were lying on the rug on their stomachs and there was no sign of the piglet. I looked closer. The pig had found a warm, comfortable spot for a nap - between my son's legs, nuzzled up against his backside. The perfect "V" - just like a pile of piglets at home with their mother.

We were done for.


15 comments:

Terra said...

That is cute about how you came to have Bud join your household and I am sure he was pampered and loved and had a good life.

Beth from Maine said...

I'm saddened by Bud's passing. I know he was a big part of your family and he certainly lived a charmed life. All that said, I can only imagine his passing has been painful.

Beth said...

I am sorry to read about Bud's passing. I enjoyed the story of how he came to be in your life.

Contrarian said...

I'm sorry to hear of Bud's passing. Losing a pet is so difficult. I hope the knowledge that you gave him a long and wonderful life brings a measure of peace to you both. Thinking of you.

Judy and Emma said...

I've never known anyone who owned a pot bellied pig. Sorry for your loss.

Rita said...

Hey, if George Clooney has a pot bellied pig he is devoted to, there must be something very sweet about them.

He will be missed. I loved hearing about how you acquired Bud and would be happy to hear any other Bud stories...or let me know if you have already told them on your blog and I'll look for them. :):)

Grandmother said...

I didn't know you had a pig but it sounds like he became part of the family so hugs to you on his loss. Great story of his first day with you.

Lynilu said...

Awww, I'm sorry. Any pet becomes family, and it is certainly a loss. After a while, you'll have the memories to make you smile. It takes a while, but how sweet those memories can be. :')

rosaria said...

Oh, it must be sad around your place, everyone who has known Bud could tell stories over those 18 yrs. Imagine! That's a long life!
A pet becomes just one of the family, for sure.

Linda Reeder said...

I read on Facebook about Bud's passing. so sorry. I didn't know you had a pet pig until then. The story of your introduction is very sweet.

Blissed-Out Grandma said...

I didn't realize potbellied pigs made such nice pets. I loved your story about how he came to you; I could picture the cute little guy and your delighted kids. I'm sure you are missing him.

Arkansas Patti said...

Aww, I am so sorry for you loss. You certainly had him for a very long time. There is nothing cutier than a baby pig and I can see how he so quickly became family.
Lovely if sad story.

DJan said...

I also read on Facebook about Bud's passing, but this little vignette... I already love Bud and am so glad you are sharing him once again.

I have no idea how long they usually live, but that does seem like a long time. My thoughts are with you in your loss, Linda. What a sweet guy he must have been.

Out on the prairie said...

I have thought about having one myself .I think i first had the idea fron Arnold on Green Acres.They are smarted than a dog.

jenny_o said...

I hope there is some comfort in knowing that others understand. Losing a pet is hard.