Officers attempt to rescue the pig. SUR
Although volunteers for animal charities in the Costa del Sol are regularly used to dealing with requests to help abandoned or neglected dogs, cats and horses, the founder of inland based charity Animals In Distress (A.I.D.) was called out last Saturday for a more unusual rescue.
José Safont Ruiz and his wife Jan who run A.I.D., received a call from a worried resident concerned about a pig seen swimming in her neighbour’s irrigation water deposit. The pig appeared to be stuck in the water and unable to climb out.
After calling Seprona, the Guardia Civil’s nature and environmental force to request assistance, José set off to help the paddling porker.
On finding the entrance to the land locked and with no vehicular access to the water deposit, José and the two Seprona officers climbed nearly 300 metres on foot up the mountainside to gain access to the land where the large concrete water tank was located. There they found the pig in the water swimming frantically trying to get out.
“The Seprona officer brought gloves and a ‘grasper’ which they used to catch one of the animal’s legs and they began to pull her out of the tank but they lost their grip and she fell back in and went under the water,” said José, who noticed two young piglets on dry land near the water tank.
As the animal floated back to the surface, the officers tried once again to get the pig out of the pool. “Although it looked like the pig was turning to bite the hand of the officer who was helping, the two Seprona men kept pulling while the pig was screaming, then when the pair nearly had the animal out of the water, they lost grip on her again. This time the pig’s legs were going like egg beaters and she did the final push on the side of the tank and managed to get out. We all backed off a few yards in case she turned towards us, but she went straight towards the piglets instead,” said José.
The Seprona officers told José that they would talk to the owner of the land about fencing off the pool.
José said “There is another side of A.I.D. that people don’t often get to see or hear about. It is not just about rescuing a dog and then finding it a home, which in itself involves a lot of work, but it’s also all the other rescue phone calls and emails asking for help that we respond to.”
He added “This case had a lovely ending but could have easily turned into a tragedy.”