To read more about CAFOs and Hurricane Florence, here are some great links:
The Hurricane Pigs
In North Carolina, there are around 9 million pigs that live in industrialized, crowded barns called CAFOs (concentrated animal feeding operations). With most CAFOs located in the eastern part of the state, when Hurricane Florence swept across the state in September 2018, they were hit especially hard. Farmers anticipated "losses" and many locked animals in their barns with nowhere to escape as flood waters rose. Millions of chickens and thousands of hogs perished. However, some hogs managed to escape, like our four hurricane pigs. Heartbreakingly, many pigs escaped the flood just to be shot by their own farmers who considered them useless now that they were "contaminated" after swimming in sewage and no longer safe for consumption. Ziggy's and several other rescues stepped up and took calls about pigs who had swam up to 20 miles to escape from drowning. This is how we rescued four pigs from death's doorstep, whom we named Jax, Diesel, Percy, and Flo. These four boys miraculously pulled through thanks to the help of some amazing vets. Initially unsocialized and frankly terrified, these four now are some of the most affectionate and gentle animals on our farm. Their story of survival has raised awareness about the reality of our food system, and their incredible personalities have let thousands to see the beauty and intelligence possessed by pigs. In a twist of fate, these pigs were destined to die, either four our plates or because of the hurricane, and were it not for the intervention of our rescue after the hurricane they would have. We are so grateful to have these boys safe and sound here at Ziggy's Refuge.