Two years ago, Arthur’s Acres Animal Sanctuary in Parksville, New York, US, rescued Penelope and Steven, two overweight and ill pigs that had been kept in a shed and fed dog food — which experts say should never be fed to pigs due to the high levels of salt and protein — but they are now thriving at the sanctuary and have settled well. 

Chicagoland Pig Rescue contacted the sanctuary about a very bad abuse case with two obese pigs, so they were promptly rescued. When found, the two pigs were extremely shy, overweight, dehydrated, with skin conditions and Steven’s hooves were overgrown and with hoof rot. These conditions were successfully treated at the sanctuary, and with proper nutrition with lots of hydration, both pigs recovered. Over time, they lost weight and learned to trust people.

On 21st May 2023, the sanctuary posted on Instagram this update about their situation: “Happy 2 year rescue anniversary Penelope & Steven. They were locked in a shed for 5 years only being fed dog food. There was a third pig that died of a heart attack from being so obese. Penelope and Steven have come so far in 2 years loosing close to 40% of their body weight and becoming some of the sweetest pigs you will ever meet. Peace, Love & Pigs”

The sanctuary says Penelope is still very bonded with Steven even though he will try to eat her food if he finishes his first. They say that after living in the Love Shack for a long time, they both decided that they wanted to move to the pot barn, where they selected their stall and moved in. Steven has since become known as The Potfather of the Potbelly herd. 

“Originally from Catalonia, but resident in the UK for several decades, Jordi is a vegan zoologist and author, who has been involved in different aspects of animal protection for many years. In addition to scientific research, he has worked mostly as an undercover investigator, animal welfare consultant, and animal protection campaigner. He has been an ethical vegan since 2002, and in 2020 he secured the legal protection of all ethical vegans in Great Britain from discrimination in a landmark employment tribunal case that was discussed all over the world. He is also the author of the book, ‘Ethical Vegan: a personal and political journey to change the world’.