Never did we think that in our 14 years of work with homeless animals we would encounter a rescue this unique, one that all of us at Animal Care Trust would fall in love with. This animal usually ends up on a dinner platter after being slaughtered cruelly. Liza, the pig came to our shelter in late 2013 one afternoon — a kind-hearted man had rescued her and another piglet from the highway. The young ones had both collapsed from dehydration. One of them passed away shortly after the rescue.
Our veterinarian Dr Lakshmi and a volunteer Alvita D’Souza stepped into the shoes of the other piglet’s mother and began to hand-feed her and watch over her day and night until they were sure she would survive. Liza made it. Following her recovery, she grew and grew. We shifted her from a pet basket to a carrier, to a large cage and eventually, to a ward.
It has been one year and three months since that day, and Liza now has her own room. Being an intelligent creature, she understands English, Kannada, Konkani and a little bit of Tulu as well! She relishes her two litres of milk and her daily feast of rice. All of us at the shelter are now making efforts to get her a home in a farmhouse where she will not be eaten, and where she will be looked after as a pet for life.
Until that happens, Liza has a family of her own, consisting of the daughter and granddaughter (Neha Mallya, seen in this picture with her) of our managing trustee Dr Ganesh Pai. They were so moved by Liza’s journey that they decided to sponsor her upkeep and regularly check on her and say hello.
Liza enjoys being in the limelight and basks in the attention that she gets from the visitors and volunteers at the shelter. And she is proof that every animal values its life and wants to be loved.
(The writer is a lawyer and Honorary Trustee of Animal Care Trust, Mangalore. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org)