Posted on Apr 22, 2016
By Ellie Laks, Founder of The Gentle Barn
Biscuit turned ten this week and we had over 500 guests here to celebrate him with us. Every hour throughout the day, we brought him cake and sang him happy birthday. Each time we did, he would sit up, smile at everyone, and eat his cake, making sounds of delight. He loved it!
We have never had a farm pig live this long so Biscuit’s birthday was a big deal! Wild pigs are small, agile, and live about twenty-five years. The meat industry has taken the DNA of the wild pig and genetically engineered it to create a man-made pig that is designed to get very big, very fast, so they can be slaughtered at six-months-old. When we rescue them and they grow to the age of three like they are supposed to, they end up being 1,000 pounds and living only three or four years, because eventually they are too big to walk.
Biscuit has made it to the age of ten because he is very disciplined about what he eats and how he exercises. Ever since we saved him at six months of age, Biscuit has gone running each and every single morning for an hour. In addition, he only eats fresh fruits, veggies, nuts, and grains, and never overeats. Because he eats a healthy diet and exercises, he has been able to live longer than any farm pig we have ever had.
We rescued Biscuit from a pumpkin patch where we took our kids one year. We had no idea they had animals and when we saw tiny baby Biscuit alone in a small cage, we sat and pet him all day. When we were leaving we passed by the owner of the pumpkin patch and told him how much we loved his pig. He exclaimed that it was not his pig and the day after Halloween he would be picked up and sent to slaughter. Devastated, my children and I went home and could not stop crying or thinking about him. After six days my husband came into the house one morning and asked us all to come into the barnyard. I told him I was getting the kids ready for school and I would come out later. Jay, however, insisted that we come right away. So, we all went out to the barnyard in our pajamas and there was Biscuit running around the barnyard as happy as can be. Jay had saved biscuit for us as a surprise!
This video shows Biscuit’s very first day at The Gentle Barn almost ten years ago. Watch as he dives into the mud and rolls in the straw for the very first time in his life!