For almost four years, Delray Beach, Florida, resident Jahaira Zamora-Duran, a family friend, has embraced her life with a new best friend, her pig Blue. Although this choice may sound slightly unconventional, Zamora-Duran felt like there would be no better selection from the animal world:
Why did you decide to get a pig?
“I’ve always loved all animals. I have known pigs to be extremely smart so I have always wanted one. One day I was scrolling through Facebook and I saw a friend’s pig that had an accidental litter. We went over to look at the pigs and we immediately fell in love with Blue.”
So, it was love at first sight.
“Blue was sitting in a muddy pool and as soon as I saw her I said, ‘We need to take her home.’”
What tricks does Blue enjoying performing?
“Blue can spin, sit, bow, jump, give kisses and put a little basketball in a hoop. She can point out the colors red, yellow and green. She can even play a little piano.
“The colors took the longest to learn. One week she learned green and once she learned green, I added red. After a month or two, I added yellow. The other tricks only took about 20 minutes to learn.”
How did you get Blue started with therapy?
“When I brought Blue home, she was very scared and the one thing I used to bond with her was teaching her tricks. She learned so quickly and I realized how intelligent she was. I started her Instagram page and instantly I got feedback that Blue made people smile and how Blue made their day. I thought, Why not sign her up as a therapy pig and make more people smile by bringing Blue to people in a nursing home? I really wanted to spread the work about how special and intelligent pigs really are.
“We visit a nursing home every month….After word started to spread, being on the local news…we got requests to visit other nursing homes.”
How many followers does Blue have on Instagram?
“Right now, she has 9,496 followers…. If you want to see Blue in a wedding dress, doing tricks, or just being herself, visit her Facebook page at facebook/bluethepig or on Instagram @bluethepigofficial.”
If someone is considering getting a pig as a pet, what advice would you offer the person?
“Research, research, research. People think it’s like having a dog or a cat but it’s more like having a toddler. Pigs have the cognitive ability of a 3-year-old child. Pigs are a lot more work than they seem. They throw temper tantrums and they are master manipulators.”
When I asked Jahairia if it was worth all the trouble, she said, “Yes, if you are ready. To me, it is worth it.”