Hector and Pork Chops
by Jane Shong Toadvin
As I have mentioned before, Hector grew up in a rather strange family....
one of the more unusual members being Pork Chops the pig. We had
never intended to raise a pig but aquired Pork Chops none the less
through some boyhood swap of my brothers with a neighbor kid. Little
brother came home one day carrying this runt of the litter, unweaned,
and scrawney black and white piglet which he bedded in a box in the
family room. Mom's initial reaction was to have a screaming cow over
having a pig at all, much less
the house, but the pathetic little oinker quickly won her over and
she was mixing baby formula and force feeding the little critter in
no time.( he
to be force fed at first as he was too weak to suckle...probably why
he'd been GIVEN to little brother).
The V's, Hector and Cindy watched
over the piglet like it was a pup, snuzzling and snooting the little
guy. Within a few weeks little Pork Chops was up and running around
the house with the dogs and Moms foot went down.....time to build him
a pig pen and get him
of the house. And as far as keeping him...just until he was big
enough to butcher and eat Dad said.
A small pighouse was constructed and an area enclosed with electric
fence down by the garden. This was to be Pork Chops new home.
didn't think so.
Pork Chops now thought he was a Vizsla, and the Vs seemed to think of
one of their own as well. Initially the electric fence kept the pig
in his pen and the dogs would jump over it to go and visit and play
piggy. They actually played like puppies, tag and chase and tug of
war, as well as wallow in the mud. The only difference really seemed
to be that
Chops liked to have his back scratched with the hoe and the Vs
preferred fingers. But before long Pork Chops was big enough that the
zap from the fence didn't bother him any more and every morning when
we awoke the pig would be on the front porch waiting for the dogs to come out and play.
the 3 of them would happily take off running while Dad complained he
was never going to be able to fatten that pig up enough to eat. There
were other problems as well. As the garden matured so did Pork
Chops, who took to harvesting whatever vegetables caught his fancy
and rooting anything
out of the ground and walking on it. The winters supply of canned and
goods seemed to be dwindling to nothing when Dad, in total
Hector "GET HIM!" when he next caught the pig in the garden.
Surprizingly, Hector DID.
With a roar the big red boy leapt right
onto the pigs back
bit his ear. Pork Chops squealed and ran back toward his pighouse,
Vizsla latched onto his ear riding him like a bucking
bronco.(understand...Pork Chops is now a VERY BIG PIG) From that time
on Pork Chops was allowed the run of the place with the exception of
the garden which Hector guarded.
As fall deepened bird season opened and Mom decided to walk the
cornfields next door in search of pheasant. Taking the dogs she set
out hunting only to find she also had a birdpig along, waddling
happily through the corn munching a bite from whatever ear might
present itself and making lots of happy pig noises. Obviously this
wasn't going to work so she gave up and walked back to the
house...put some food in the pen to distract the pig...and loaded the dogs into the car to drive to a more distant field.
was just that the pig was so used to running with the dogs, she thought.
And when bow season opened she left the dogs in the house and climbed
the back bluff to her stand to wait for this big buck she'd scouted
Before long, sure enough, she heard a noise in the brush. Closer and
louder and louder. She sat bow drawn and ready....as Pork Chops
lumbered into the clearing. The pig had tracked her there. Of course
Dad thought this was all very funny until old Pork Chops did the same thing to him.
That was the last straw. It was time for Pork Chops to live up to
Off to the butcher he went to return some days later in so many neat
white little frozen packages.
Dinner that night was, of course, pork chops (or Pork Chops).
Everyone sat around the table kind of looking at their food. Us kids
were very upset
Pork Chops fate and had vowed not to taste a morsel but Dad was being
Until dinner anyway. After sitting there for a while he finally
plate away in disgust and announced "I can't eat a pig I knew." Dog
scraps that night include a lot of nice boned pork. Hector and Cindy
our sensibilities and munched their former friend right up. The rest
Chops remains were swapped at the butchers for an anonymous pig that
had any trouble eating.