A pig that was dropped off at the Emerald Coast zoo has been adopted by a zoo volunteer's family. The pig will be the fourth pet for the family.
CRESTVIEW — The pig that was dropped off at the Emerald Coast Zoo after wandering into a yard in Fort Walton Beach has found his place with a new family.
The pot-bellied pig was dropped off at the zoo by Christina Johnson early last week after Johnson couldn't find an owner or an animal rescue that would take him.
The pig was getting ready to become part of the petting zoo when zoo volunteer Elijah Kuznicvci and his mom, Erica, decided to adopt the friendly pig.
The pair met the pig the day he was dropped off and fell in love instantly.
“It was clear that at some point this was a pet who was cared for. This was somebody’s pet, this was not a farm animal and not a petting zoo animal,” Erica said. “This is someone who had indoor and outdoor exposure and I wanted him to still have that life.”
Elijah, a home-schooled high school senior who has been volunteering at the zoo three days a week, had been talking with his mom for the last two months about the idea of getting a pet pig.
When the lost pig was brought to the zoo, he knew it was meant to be.
“I have really always liked pigs,” Elijah said. “He just came in and Rick (zoo owner) said no rescue wanted to have him. It was sort of like a miracle that this pig with no home came. He’s well-mannered and has nowhere else to go and we have the room.”
The family already has three other pets, two dogs and a cat. Erica said she isn’t very worried about how they will react to the new addition.
“He should be a good fit,” Erica said. “If for some bizarre reason they needed space, we have the space for them.”
Rick de Ridder, the zoo’s owner, is excited to see the pig go to his new home.
“He (Elijah) has been awesome with him,” de Ridder said. “I think it’s a perfect fit.”
While the pig has found his forever home, his name is still up in the air. However, the options have been narrowed down to three: Kevin, Hamilton or Notorious P.I.G.