GALLERY & VIDEO: They say that man’s best friend is his dog - but for one Soham couple it is... their hog

11:10 06 February 2015

Emily Keates and Fella, Picture: Steve Williams.

Emily Keates and Fella, Picture: Steve Williams.

Archant

A pig that was destined for the slaughter house is enjoying a new lease of life after being saved by a couple from Soham.

Emily Keates, 25, and her partner Dustin Graziotti, 28, stepped in to save Fella – a pot-belly/saddleback cross – from a breeder in Essex who was going to sell him and his siblings on to a factory for meat.

Now, 12 months on, Fella has become one of the family and can often be seen on walks around the town with Emily, who works from home renting motorhomes and Dustin, an American serviceman, along their three terrier dogs.

The couple, who live in Centre Road, are both vegans and are passionate about animals. They decided to rescue a pig to help others make an association between the meat they eat and the animal.

Emily said: “Fella is house trained. He lives in the house and we treat him like a dog, take him for walks and cuddle on the sofa. We are head over heels in love with him, he’s so affectionate and precious.

Emily Keates and Fella, Picture: Steve Williams.Emily Keates and Fella, Picture: Steve Williams.

“The animals share a bedroom upstairs. My partner and I, and indeed all the animals, are all vegan. The idea of rescuing a pig was to help people make the association between the animal and the meat.

“We get stopped multiple times by everyone we see on walks and we always drop in seeds of compassion into the conversation.”

Fella, who is due to celebrate his first birthday next week, has been taught to sit and wait and Emily says he is often better behaved than her dogs.

Fella still has another six months worth of growing to do and could be half as big again when full grown. He enjoys a daily diet of boiled vegetables and a few odd scraps from the kitchen.

Emily Keates and Fella, Picture: Steve Williams.Emily Keates and Fella, Picture: Steve Williams.

Emily said: “He loves visitors and says hello to everyone and other dogs in the street by pushing his snout up to them. He also does this to the horses in the fields who sprint over to the fence when they see us coming.

“Some people think it is mad to keep a pig but to us it makes sense.”

To find out more, visit www.facebook.com/mypetpigfella2014.

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