The Central Texas Pig Rescue and The Texas Bamboo Society teamed up this weekend to construct a bamboo home for one lucky pig. Chich, short for Chicharon, was given to Peppy Myer a little less than a year ago. Myer’s inherited him through a friend.
Chich is a Vietnamese potbellied pig that is about 5-year-old and weights around 165 pounds.
Chich isn’t the only pig on the property, Myer’s also has another pig named Notorious P.I.G.
“Both pigs have been slowly connecting, the pig of the wild and the big of the city. Just building a brotherhood,” Myers said. Myer’s said the bamboo home they are constructing in not your average pig pen.
“We’ve given him a paradise. And he makes us happy every morning,” Myer said.
Michael Schafer is a member of the Texas Bamboo Society and he stopped by to lend a hand. “I’m helping to put together a La Palapa as shade for Chich the pig. A Palapa is tent like structure,” Schafer said.
The blazing, humid Texas heat is rolling in and Chich the pig needs some shade to cool off too.
“It will be cool in the summer and a nice wind break in the winter. If it rains Chich will stay dry,” Schafer said.
The Palapa is going to be four by six foot and three feet in the back.
“This will help him feel secure,” Schafer said.
Schafer said it’s the first time he builds a Palapa for a pig out of bamboo. “This is the first time I’ve made a Palapa for a big, something new to add to the resume,” Schafer said.
Tracey Stabile volunteered to help build the Palapa for Chich and said pigs can make a great pet.
“They’re not dogs or cats and people need to know that before buying a pig,” Stabile said. She said she’s noticed a trend when it comes to buying pigs.
However, people need to know the reality of a pig before taking one home. “Lots of people buy pigs and expect them to stay super small and they are misled into thinking a pig might be 10 or 15 pounds and once that changes it becomes an issue and people can’t keep the pig at that point,” Stabile said.
Dan Illescas is the managing member for Central Texas Pig Rescue, he and his wife started the rescue years ago after rescuing their recovering tea-cup pig named Annie. Illescas said she was being starved to stay small.
“They had her in a small crate and were feeding her a table spoon of food twice a day. She now weighs 45 pounds and has a number of health issue,” Illescas said.
This inspired Illescas to work to bring awareness about pig rescues.
He currently has 92 pigs on his property and said raising awareness about the reality of buying a pig is his mission. “Mr. Chich is a perfect example of what to expect from a pig. An average weight is anywhere from 65 to 150 pounds. If people expect the pig to be 40 pounds they’re in for a surprise,” Illescas said.