Florida Man Opens His Home to Dozens of Rescued Animals
— Trending Green News (@greenolizer) August 11, 2015
Imagine having 26 kids. Now, imagine if all of those kids were actually pigs. Literally, like the farm animal. That’s what life’s like for Andy Gregory, an insurance agent who lives in southwest Florida. The funny thing is, he didn’t set out to be a guardian angel of sorts for pigs, it sort of just happened to him.
One pig, named Sherry, was found just walking around a retirement home when a friend of a friend thought of Gregory and his 11.5-acres. Sheldon, another pig, grew too big for his previous owner, a school teacher who got wind of Gregory and sent Sheldon for a better life. There’s even a pig named Barbecue – he was spending his days terrorizing tennis players at a nearby court before he found a home with Gregory.
For Gregory, he really wouldn’t have it any other way. He had a pig named Hoover as a childhood pet, but when the animal reached 1,000 pounds, he had to give him away to a farm in Georgia. I guess the rest is history! Even though Gregory isn’t a farmer (he’s actually the president of an insurance agency called Des Champs, Gregory & Hayes) he’s found that having over two-dozen pigs around the house actually brings him a lot of joy. “They’re my sanity,” he told Huffington Post, “Lots of unconditional love.”
Gregory, Patron Saint of Rescued Pigs
Damen Hurd is a wildlife rehabilitation at the Florida Wildlife Education and Rehabilitation Center who’s sent a few pigs to live on Gregory’s estate, and he says that if it weren’t for Gregory’s dedicated work, “Many of the pigs he has rescued would be killed if it wasn’t for him. Andy is an amazing guy that doesn’t have to do this. He could be your typical upper-middle class, clean-cut insurance company co-owner. But he’s not, he chooses to do good and save these pigs’ lives with his money and time, and I am grateful for that.”
The pigs aren’t the only critters living with Gregory, he’s also got 15 goats, three horses, a rabbit, a sheep, six dogs, four cats — most of them are rescues. This means that the bills rack up quite high for feeding and taking care of all these animals. Gregory says he spends about $20k (!) per year on food, vet bills, and other expenses. This seems to be a small price to pay for the joy Gregory gets back from taking care of all these animals. “The best part is their company as well as watching their behavior change and adjust. Many didn’t get a lot of attention before coming to me.”
What does this mean for his marriage?
I imagine that if I had 26 pigs and 31 additional pets, adding up to a whopping total of 57 animals, my wife wouldn’t be too psyched about it. “I always wanted a home with room to do just this. Having a wife that loves me and stands by me is makes this all the better,” he told Huffington Post. “I told Debbie I’m going to get me a camel. I think it’s legal, too.”
This guy’s wife is a gem. If I even had one pig, my wife would divorce me!