In August 2023. a US farmer decided to put a two-week-old piglet in the back of a chicken slaughter truck as a joke to the truck driver, but he left without realising she was there. She probably travelled up to twelve hours without any food. She could have died and nearly did, but luckily for her, the driver’s family later got her to Lancaster Farm Sanctuary, in Mount Joy, Pennsylvania. She was trembling and lethargic when she got there, and was named Melissa.

On 5th August, an Instagram post from the sanctuary read, “Since coming here she has been really fussy about eating. She refuses milk even though we have tried several kinds. The one thing she would eat was a special protein water for pigs but the problem is that isn’t sufficient on its own. So we started adding some grain and she once again refused to eat. We have been trying to encourage her to eat with the syringe and then suddenly it’s like she decided she liked it!!! Yay!!!! We are so relieved!!!!!”

Three days later the sanctuary had to call the vet because Melissa seemed very congested and she could have got rhinitis, which could damage her nasal passages. The vet gave her some antibiotics.  On 17th August, the sanctuary said, “She is very tiny for about 1-month old! We have never met another pig still so small at her age.”

On 23rd August, the Sanctuary wrote, “Baby Melissa continues to amaze us with her resilience and charm! It’s hard to believe she was in such poor health only three weeks ago when we rescued her. Today she is doing very well. She loves to eat and run all over the place. And she looooves being touched.”

Melissa is continuing to recover at the sanctuary, and although she is still very small, the sanctuary reported in mid-September that she is active and in good health. 

“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’.