We rescued Zippy during the summer of 2021, after receiving a call about a baby pig who was paralyzed from waist down. We suspected that the mother pig had bitten her and caused this injury.
Zippy had us wrapped around her little hooves from day 1. Within the first few weeks, we noticed she was more lethargic than a regular piglet, and one day, we rushed her to the vet hospital when we noticed her breathing slowing. After a one hour car ride, Zippy stopped breathing right as we pulled into the hospital. They revived her, she fought so hard, and miraculously survived. She was discharged from the ICU and returned home a completely different piglet: spunky, loud, and wild! She loved swimming with all her heart - so much so that we dubbed her "Mer-pig".
Zippy became a beloved figure on our social media pages. It was clear how much of a zest for life this disabled little pig had. Zippy inspired so many people to re-evaluate the creatures that end up on dinner plates, and brought joy to us and those who had never even met her.
We were shocked when at only a few months old, Zippy began breaking out of her crate at night to sleep with Cruz in his bed. Cruz lost his sister Coral several years ago, and they shared a bond so close, that he never bonded with another animal. Zippy reminded us of Coral so much. They were both loud, bossy, and spunky, and I think Zippy reminded Cruz of Coral too. Soon, they slept together every night. It was the start of a beautiful friendship. We didn't realize it at the time, but they were also similar medically, as Coral passed away from GI related issues too.
Zippy was unique in spirit but unique medically as well. When we took her to get spayed, we learned that she had both male and female reproductive organs. We wondered if this was one of the reasons that provoked her mother's attack as a baby. Zippy was almost exactly 1 year old when she started experiencing severe GI issues. Her paralysis had caused some issues in the past- the nerves in her GI tract were certainly not properly functioning, and Zippy was both incontinent and prone to constipation/rectal prolapses (which we were able to treat with mineral oil and stool softeners). However, it was clear this time something was majorly wrong. We rushed Zippy to UT, where they discovered many intestinal adhesions and that parts of her intestines had died. The surgeons removed the dead bowels, and warned us that Zippy's chances of surviving the surgery were minimal. Zippy survived though, and again we were warned that she may not recover bowel function. With each day that went by, we felt more confident that Zippy would pull through. She had been through so much already in her short life. She had to get through this. Zippy passed some stool and continued eating, and Kristin was able to visit several times a day to feed her snacks. Even with all these promising signs, about a week after her initial surgery, scans confirmed the worse: Zippy's intestines had grown more adhesions and the surgery was unsuccessful. We made the devastating decision to let Zippy pass peacefully. Her body was flawed but her soul was so strong. Zippy's loss was devastating to us and to all those who loved her. She truly touched so many hearts and lives, and her loss will always be a hole in our hearts.