For Immediate Release
Twist of Fate Turns Little Piglet into Biggest Winner After Falling Off Transport Truck
Bob Harper Piglet is the Third Transport Rescue of the Summer
WASHINGTON - The instant Bob Harper's photo was posted on
Facebook, the comments began to pour in: "He's gorgeous!," "OMG
way too cute!," "Awww, such a sweet face!," "What a
cutie-patooty!," Ah, to be the star of a hit show adored by millions of
fans. Or just the adorable namesake of one. When Farm Sanctuary, the nation's leading farm animal
protection organization, was alerted on Monday to a one-month-old male piglet
who had fallen off a transport truck - the third transport rescue by the
organization this summer - they did not have to think long before
deciding to name him after their national 2010 Walk for Farm Animals spokesperson,
celebrity trainer Bob Harper from NBC's "The Biggest Loser." Little Bob Harper piglet, once
destined for a life of misery before being slaughtered at just 6 months of age,
arrived late last night at the nonprofit's New York Shelter in Watkins
Glen. A twist of fate had made his life count.
A man driving along an Illinois interstate watched in horror as a
tiny piglet fell from a transport truck driving in front of him and hit the
pavement. He immediately stopped his car and retrieved the frightened animal,
who was covered in road rash. He took the piglet home and cared for him until
the realization set in that his apartment would not be an adequate home for an
animal who could grow as large as 500 pounds. He then turned to Chicago Animal Care
and Control for help, but not being able to find an appropriate home for the
piglet in the city, they contacted Monica Frenden, executive director of Illinois
Valley Cat Taxi, a cat shelter and low-cost spay/neuter program for cats in rural
Frenden's weekly trips to Chicago to transport cats to a low-cost
spay/neuter clinic in the city had led to her working with the Chicago ACC, which
has since come to rely on her for finding homes for the city's most
"While working with the Chicago Animal Care and
Control to find homes for cats, I began noticing that somehow, all manner of
barnyard animals were also finding their way to the Chicago pound," said Frenden.
"Sadly, due to the difficulty of finding suitable homes, most were being
destroyed." Frenden knew they had to extend their compassion to these
animals, too, and before long, they were finding homes for chickens, turkeys,
goats, pigs and all other farm animals who were found wandering the streets of Chicago. "These
animals are just as friendly and intelligent as cats and dogs, and when
provided with a safe, appropriate, caring forever home, they make excellent
companions. Over the past year, I'm happy to say that no farm animals have been
euthanized at the Chicago ACC because we've been able to place them all."
Most farm animals found in major metropolitan areas are
either slaughterhouse or live market escapees or transport rescues, like Bob
"There are a shocking number of farm animals who die
during transport every year," said Farm Sanctuary National Shelter
Director Susie Coston. "Some are overcome by the heat and stress of the
overcrowded conditions, others are victims in truck accidents and some of the
smallest animals fall off these trucks on their way to finishing facilities. What
most people don't realize is that farm animals endure months of suffering
and abuse long before they ever reach the slaughterhouse. Having cared
for so many pigs over the years, and knowing how intelligent and sensitive they
are, it is so hard to imagine them packed inside hot, overcrowded transport
trucks on their way to finishing facilities and slaughterhouses across the
country. Pigs are incredible animals with distinct personalities who love and
enjoy life when given the opportunity. We wanted to name this piglet after Bob
Harper because, as our national 2010 Walk
for Farm Animals spokesperson, Bob is using his voice to bring much
needed awareness to the hidden suffering of farm animals."
Bob Harper piglet will not be the only piglet with a
bold-faced name wallowing around in the mud at Farm Sanctuary's New York
Shelter. He joins Kim Gordon piglet, another piglet who fell off a transport
truck in July and was rescued by a rock band on a cross-country tour who found
her wandering along a backcountry road in the middle of prairieland South Dakota. Jay the
bull was the third transport rescue this summer. He survived a fiery truck
crash in Indiana
to make his home at the New York Shelter.
Bob Harper, the celebrity trainer, was so honored to have
the little piglet named after him, he immediately posted a photo to his
Facebook page to show off his adorable namesake. And if the number of comments
declaring "I can never eat bacon again!" are any indication, this
little guy, just like his namesake, has a way of motivating people.
To learn more about the 2010 Walk for Farm Animals and find the Walk
nearest you, please visit walkforfarmanimals.org.
More information about the pork industry
and rampant problems in transport can be found at http://www.farmsanctuary.org/
If you would like to speak with Susie
Coston, national shelter director of Farm Sanctuary, or Monica Frenden,
executive director of Illinois
Valley Cat Taxi, please
contact Meredith Turner at 646-369-6212 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Photos of the adorable
piglet are available to media upon request.
Farm Sanctuary is the nation's leading farm animal protection organization. Since incorporating in 1986, Farm Sanctuary has worked to expose and stop cruel practices of the "food animal" industry through research and investigations, legal and institutional reforms, public awareness projects, youth education, and direct rescue and refuge efforts. Farm Sanctuary shelters in Watkins Glen, N.Y., and Orland, Calif., provide lifelong care for hundreds of rescued animals, who have become ambassadors for farm animals everywhere by educating visitors about the realities of factory farming.