Practical Issues > Factory Farm Index > Pigs-Sheep

Ellsworth Pig
November 2005
Comments at top, story at bottom

Ellsworth pig: "We consume the carcasses of creatures of like appetites, passions and organs as our own, and fill the slaughterhouses daily with screams of pain and fear."
        --Robert Louis Stevenson

It is clear that the story of this poor, unfortunate pig who wanted so desperately to escape slaughter, has touched the hearts of just about everyone...with the exception perhaps, of a few compassion-deficient souls who just don't get it. Animals have intelligence, emotions and instincts that are in many ways superior to humans; they can sense danger and as we all know, animals fled to higher ground because they knew that the Tsunami was coming. Their vision, agility, sense of smell and hearing can be far superior to that of humans; they even mourn and grieve for the loss of those they love; they nurture, teach and protect their young and there is so much we can learn from animals about patience and playfulness, about affection and fidelity .

The pig has been much maligned and misunderstood throughout history. He/she is neither filthy nor stupid. To the contrary, pigs are extremely intelligent and sensitive animals and only wallow in mud to protect their very sensitive skin. They are factory farmed, genetically manipulated and engineered, used and abused for every imaginable perverse and exploitive purpose that evil minds can conjure up.

That there are still today, people who are so uninformed, so primitive and unenlightened is shocking and appalling. For those who use God or the Bible to justify every evil deed created and by mankind on animals, I have only pity... for their ignorance, their immense insensitivity to the suffering of other creatures.

"Animals are God's creatures, not human property, nor utilities, nor resources, nor commodities, but precious beings in God's sight. Christians whose eyes are fixed on the awfulness of crucifixion are in a special position to understand the awfulness of innocent suffering. The Cross of Christ is God's absolute identification with the weak, the powerless, and the vulnerable, but most of all with unprotected, undefended, innocent suffering."
    --Rev. Andrew Linzey

For "What is man without the beasts? If all the beasts were gone, men would die from a great loneliness of spirit. For whatever happens to the beasts, soon happens to man. All things are connected."
 -- Chief Seattle

Pig's quest for freedom

Why did you end the story about the poor pig's attempt to avoid the slaughterhouse (BDN, Nov. 15) with such a chilling comment as "While unfortunate for the pig, the incident was good for a few laughs, a few hog jokes and for breaking up an otherwise boar-ing day."

Was it because the hopelessness of this intelligent animal's struggle was too much for you to bear, so you had to joke about it?

Tears are running down my cheeks thinking about how she "closed her eyes" and gave up, when she was dragged back to the slaughterhouse truck. In my opinion, being a human implies having some compassion and feeling for other living beings; shame on everyone who made a joke out of this animal's quest for freedom.

Kiley Blackman Yonkers, N.Y.

November 19, 2005
Slaughterhouse-bound pig tries to escape

How sad that anyone would think this is a funny story and make jokes about it. Please consider going to the Bangor Daily News site (link below) to submit a comment on this story and the cold, heartless way this story was written. There are some very good comments at the site. You can also send your comments to:

Original Story of Ellsworth Pig

November 19, 2005
Slaughterhouse-bound pig tries to escape

This it is a cold journalistic report of the touching history lived by an intrepid little pig, on her way to the slaughter house, she fought until the end of its forces to fulfill the dream that she yearned so much: to live frees and happy. She represents the million enslaved and assassinated animals anywhere in the world.

Ellsworth Escape

280-pound pig delays trip to slaughterhouse with leap from trailer Tuesday, November 15, 2005 - Bangor Daily News 


ELLSWORTH - A 280-pound pig bound for a Bangor slaughterhouse saw a red light as an opportunity Monday when it jumped clear out of the wooden trailer it was riding in and attempted to make a break for it.

When its owner stopped for a traffic light at the corner of Oak and Main streets at about 11:30 a.m., the freedom-seeking sow leaped for her life and scampered down the road toward Lincoln Street.

The pink pig with brown spots fled on hoof as officers pursued her to Birch Street and through several yards before she stopped on Bayview Avenue to rest after about 30 minutes of freedom.

"She was tired so she laid down," said Ellsworth police Officer Daniel Owens, who chased the swine along with Officer Chad Wilmot. "That's probably the most exercise she has had in her life."

Police officers and firefighters surrounded her, looped a rope around her pork shoulders and lassoed her neck with a dog snare. They attempted to drag her back to the trailer using a flexible plastic backboard but the feisty pig would have none of it; she protested by curling her pink lips and letting out piercing squeals that made bystanders wince.

"You just feel badly for the poor thing," said neighbor Barbara Williams, who watched from a safe distance near the street.

Williams went outside after seeing a television cameraman's head bob past her living room window. Several other residents and the mailman joined her to see what was going on.

A short time later, Anne Hayes returned home from dropping a friend off at the airport to find fire trucks and cruisers lining the road. She pulled her Toyota into the driveway just in time to see several men in blue uniforms wrangling a pig outside her yellow farmhouse.

"What's going on?" she said. "We thought the house was on fire."

With help from the pig's owners, who live in Bar Harbor, police and firefighters were able to muscle the tenacious animal back onto the trailer, where it laid down on a pile of dirt and crab apples and closed its eyes.

Without saying much, the owners jumped into the cab of the pickup truck and set back on course for the slaughterhouse. While unfortunate for the pig, the incident was good for a few laughs, a few hog jokes and for breaking up an otherwise boar-ing day.

For Williams and her neighbors, the pig puns came easily.

"We just ham it up down here on Bayview," she said.

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