Sheep Pigs and Celebrity Pets: Pigs are the new black

Sheep Pigs and Celebrity Pets: Pigs are the new black

Michael Lowe
Published: 04/21/2010


(Photo courtesy of Sky News)

It’s a sheep! It’s a pig! It’s a…Mangalitza? Buddy, Porsche and Margot arrived at the Tropical Wings Zoo in Essex recently and have since caused much stopping and starring from visitors. “Buddy has blond hair which is almost white, so people really do believe he is a sheep,” Denise Cox, education coordinator for the zoo, told Sky News.

 

The curly-cued animals are, in fact, pigs covered in woolly hair and originate in Austria and Hungary. The porkers are linked to a native breed of pig in Britain that died out in 1972 and, fearing this species may be going the same direction, scientists have entered them into a breeding program at the zoo that may have already seen success.

 

Cox said one of the pigs may be showing early signs of pregnancy, although there has been no confirmation yet.

 

Sheep pigs have gotten more attention lately as Emma Thompson brought one such pig in a blanket (as they’re lovingly referred) to the premiere of the latest Nanny McPhee movie.

 

Celebrities and pigs aren’t anything new, however. Remember last year’s ‘teacup’ pig craze? 

 

 

These little oinkers weigh just half a pound at birth and will only grow as high as a foot and some inches. According to one teacup breeder, “They make fantastic pets. They're highly intelligent and just love to be loved. They give so much back to you."

 

Paris Hilton recently purchased one to add to her stable of 13 animals showing micro-pigs are still up for celebrity contention, but pet pigs may have a longer history as celeb companions than you think.

 

In 2006, George Clooney’s pot-bellied pig went to the big trough in the sky after living with People’s sexiest man alive for 18 years. 

 

"He was as old a pig as the vets had ever seen. I was really surprised, because he's been a big part of my life," says Clooney, who, from time to time shared his bed with the nearly 300-pound porker.  

 

From the sexiest man to a not-so-bad-looking girl, teen heartthrob Jennifer Love Hewitt also had a pet pig who she went home to after her first date with Wonder Years’ Fred Savage. 

Dogs and cats are so last year.