Every year, more than 350 million pigs are slaughtered for food. Considering that there are only 319 million people in the United States, that number seems very high. This means that the sheer scale of the farm industry forces most pigs to lives in factory farms where they live in overcrowded sheds with sometimes thousands of other pigs, with no access to sunlight or the outdoors. Many are abused, and mother pigs often endure the worst treatment as they are often forced to be breeding machines, even on small-scale farms. This is why we are so thankful for the rescuers at Farm Sanctuary, who were able to rescue Ruby and her piglets.

According to Farm Sanctuary, Ruby, and her babies had lived in a dirty, mud- and feces-soaked pen in a barn that smelled so strongly of ammonia that rescuers said their eyes watered within the first minute of entering. If that was just the first minute, imagine what it was like for Ruby and the other animals to live there! Ruby is a Tamworth pig, which usually has a litter of six to 10 babies. Since rescuers only found two piglets, it’s likely her others were killed or died of pneumonia, which her babies, Kelly and Joshua arrived at the sanctuary with. Sanctuary workers said that it was difficult at first to treat the piglets because mom, Ruby was so protective. With mom’s love and the sanctuary’s care, the piglets grew almost quadrupling in size in the first three weeks!


Ruby and her babies were found by rescuers in a disgusting pen with the smell of ammonia so strong; it made their eyes water.


Rescuers took special care with Kelly and Joshua, knowing what trauma they and their mother had experienced. 


The piglets enjoy sunshine for the first time at Farm Sanctuary.


Farm Sanctuary workers said that mom Ruby is loving her new home. Having lived her entire life in a stall with no light, fresh air, grass, or dirt, she loves feeling the Earth and has even proudly destroyed three pastures, rooting for hours and hours each day, in love with the sun.


Just look at these two basking in the sun’s warmth. How good it is to be alive!


Ruby is a doting and protective mom.


Kelly and Joshua love to explore. These little ones make us want to go on an adventure!


Mom Ruby loves to play and be with her piglets as they grow. Check out this little family play together in this video. 

You can help Farm Sanctuary ensure that the rest of Ruby, Kelly and Joshua’s lives are ones of peace by making a donation to support their efforts to care for all of their animal families. We are so glad this piggy family will always enjoy the sunshine and Earth without harm.

All image source: Farm Sanctuary