A South Carolina animal sanctuary is asking for volunteers to cuddle their rescue pigs.
In December 2018, Cotton Branch Farm Animal Sanctuary rescued 225 abused and neglected pigs from a property in Kentucky, according to CNN affiliate WIS.
Its goal is to place more than 100 of the pigs in households as pets. In the last year, 75 of the pigs have been adopted, the sanctuary told WIS.
But some of the remaining pigs need to develop a better relationship with humans before they are ready for adoption.
“These pigs weren’t socialized because they lived in such large numbers,” said Joshua Carpenter Costner, the sanctuary’s director of operations, “We noticed how quickly a lot of them were coming around when we spent time with them, and in order to find them homes, we thought it was a good idea to have people start coming out.”
The sanctuary decided to ask volunteers to prepare the pigs for domestic life by playing with them, feeding them treats and giving them belly rubs, according to a Facebook post.
The ad for “piggy cuddlers” explains that “even just talking to our pig friends can get them ready for their new home.”
Volunteers all over the world are eager to help.
“We actually had to create more time slots for socialization today because they were all filled for the next few months,” Carpenter Costner told CNN on Friday.
For those who may be skeptical about playing with pigs, Carpenter Costner’s husband, the sanctuary’s executive director Evan Costner, explained that he could relate.
“My husband wanted a pig for Christmas. At first, I thought the idea was strange,” Evan Costner wrote on the sanctuary’s website. “When we brought Oliver home, things started to change. I began to notice that this animal was able to experience and express emotions like the dogs and cats I grew up with.”
If you have an interest in cuddling rescue pigs, you can sign up here.