“Is this a dream? Or is this real?” four-year-old Skylar asked on Monday when she and her family spotted a pig roaming around their Bella Vista backyard in Vernon.
Stacey Birkeland, Skylar’s mother, was sitting around the kitchen table talking with her mother—Syklar’s grandmother—when all of a sudden, she shot up and said, “Oh my gosh!”
Birkeland’s mother had spotted the big pig strolling along the fence line.
Immediately, Birkeland and Skylar rushed outside to see the pig up close.
“We realized the pig was pregnant or it had just had babies,” Birkeland said.
She worked quickly to scrape up some vegetables to keep the sow in the yard so she could try to find the owner and arrange for a pickup. Birkeland said carrots really did the trick; cabbage, not so much.
Birkeland turned to the Vernon and Area Community Forum on Facebook and posted a picture of the sow and asked “who’s missing a pig!”
During it’s short stay, the sow enjoyed scratching its behind on Birkeland’s children’s swing set and sought some shade under the trampoline.
As it turns out, the pig wandered down from a nearby farm. But she wasn’t alone. A second pig was also reported missing on Facebook by owner Steffie Brenner. Both the animals were spotted on Birkeland’s property, although Birkeland was only aware of the one.
A woman came to Birkeland’s home and lured the sow back to the farm with tasty treats. The owner of the pig called afterward to give her thanks and ask if any damage has been caused.
“Sure, there are some holes dug up in my yard,” Birkeland said, noting she didn’t mind.
“This thing is not gentle,” she said. “Whenever it steps, it digs up mounds of grass.”
Over all, the sow visited the Birkelands for about two hours.
“The whole experience was pretty hilarious,” she said, noting her children especially enjoyed the few hours they had with the pig.
Birkeland said before the special visitor’s arrival, she wasn’t exactly having the best day. In fact, a friend had recognized her sour state and told her by the end of the day, “you’ll be giddy and laughing and something will happen.”
“She was right,” Birkeland said.
Birkeland said she believes the rightful owner has recouped her missing sows.