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Neighbor raises stink over family's pet pig

Posted May 13, 2009

— An Erwin family is fighting to keep its pot-bellied pig after the town adopted an ordinance banning swine as pets, but a neighbor said he wants the animal out.

Stormy Suggs, 14, has raised Clover, a a Vietnamese pot-bellied pig, almost from the animal's birth.

"If I lose her, it's not only like losing a sister, it's like losing a part of me," Stormy said.

Clover the pot-bellied pig Some not hog wild over pet pig in Erwin

"Just like any dog, any cat, any animal that you might have – any child you might have – she's part of the family," Donald Suggs, Stormy's father, said of Clover.

Erwin joined Coats, Angier and Lillington last year in adopting Harnett County's ordinance pertaining to pets. The law says swine aren't allowed within 200 feet of a home inside town limits.

Suggs said Clover should be grandfathered in under the ordinance, saying the pig's health could suffer if the family is forced to move her.

"The stress will probably kill her," he said.

Last week, the town's Board of Commissioners decided to keep the ordinance intact.

"The bottom line is, we do have an ordinance. The ordinance was passed by the board in the spirit of keeping the best interests of the public in mind,” Erwin Town Manager Bryan Thompson said. "So far as a compromise without any amendments to the ordinance, there's not a whole lot of latitude."

Erwin and Harnett County officials and attorneys plan to meet in the next few days to discuss Clover's future.

"We want to look at what the possibilities are,” Assistant County Manager Tony Wilder said.

Thomas Johnson, who lives next to the Suggs family, said he intends to press officials to stick to the letter of the law.

"I’m going to take this thing legally as far as I have to. I’m not going to live in a hog pen,” Johnson said.

He said the smell from the pig is often unbearable.

"It gets into my house, and it affects my health. I can’t even go to sleep at night without worrying about a disease-laden mosquito,” he said. "The odor will literally burn the hair out of your nose almost."

The Suggs family faces no penalties until officials make a decision. If officials uphold the ordinance, the family could face daily fines for keeping Clover.


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  • jaubut May 14, 2009

    ONE pot belly pig DOES NOT SMELL!! I live in N. Raleigh and i bet half of my neighbors dont even know i have a pot belly pig! The pig should be allowed to stay, grandfather it in. They are smart, clean animals. Also i heard that pot belly pigs don't taste anything like a regular pig, they taste gross. I hope the family can keep the pet piggy, he's very cute!

  • aco419 May 14, 2009

    If they love her so much, when was the last time she saw a vet and got her hooves trimmed? They are atrocious!

  • Professor May 14, 2009

    story about a pig and someone has a bacon joke

    People do eat pig. Go to your local grocery store and you will see. lol lol

  • Professor May 14, 2009

    Wow, a story about a pig and someone has a bacon joke. How originally brilliant.

    Not joking honey. Pork chops, bacon, pig feet, hogs head is really delicious. You are missing a treat. Try it. You will feel like you are in hog's heaven afterwards. lol lol

  • Professor May 14, 2009

    How about some pigs feet? They are soooo good. lol

  • thepeopleschamp May 14, 2009

    Wow, a story about a pig and someone has a bacon joke. How originally brilliant.

  • pebbles262004 May 14, 2009

    I'm glad Mr. Johnson is not my neighbor. I don't have a pig, but I don't want a human one next door either.

  • Professor May 14, 2009

    The pig should be grandfathered in (and I do think an ordinance against a common pet is ridiculous).

    I still maintain the pig should be slaughter for that nice pork chops and bacon. You have to admit I am right and you are kidding with your comments. lol lol

  • Professor May 14, 2009

    The neighbors should either keep the pig completely in the house or slaughter it.

  • kittiboo May 14, 2009

    The pig should be grandfathered in (and I do think an ordinance against a common pet is ridiculous). I have no interest in seeing the video after the comments people have made about Mr. Foul Mouth.
    I would like to know who was there first, because if the smell is that bad, surely one would notice it BEFORE they bought property next to the pig. I also don't think potbellied pigs are that stinky. My dog will almost run you out of the room on occassion, however!!