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Rescue crews safely reunite pig stuck in culvert with owner after four days

SEYMOUR, Wis. (WBAY) — It has been a long four days for a Seymour woman who lost her piglet inside of a culvert on Sunday night.

“We know time’s limited with no food. She’s just a baby,” said Dawna June, the piglet’s owner.

June returned home from picking up two new 12-week-old potbellied pigs from Black Creek, and as she unloaded them from the back of her vehicle, the bottom of the cage buckled. One of the piglets inside took off running.

“We’ve been trying cage, food, peanut butter, calling for her,” she said. “We’ve tried playing pig noises in the culvert to see if she would come out.”

The piglet ran through a culvert underneath Highway 54 outside of Seymour into another one just 24-inches in diameter used to drain water from a local development.

“At first, I wasn’t sure she was still in there,” said June. “I wasn’t hearing her at first, so I reached out to humane societies and neighborhood pages to see if anyone had seen her.”

On Wednesday night, the piglet made her first sounds in days, and June quickly called the Seymour Rural Fire Department.

“We had to think outside the box,” said Chief Greg Brown of the Seymour Rural Fire Department. “Last night, we tried to coax him out with some water, but he’s a swimmer. So, he swam against the water and stayed in the pipe.”

She did the same thing on Thursday morning as firefighters unloaded gallons of water into the culvert.

That is when their already creative efforts went one step further.

“We thought of an idea to put a beach ball the size of the pipe inside of the pipe and then follow it with some basketballs and 5-gallon pails to give it a little push so the pig had to be pushed out of the pipe as we added water at the beginning of the pipe,” said Brown.

With some additional assistance from the Black Creek Fire Department, the idea worked, reuniting the piglet with her new owner and earning her a new name.

“Phoenix because she flew like the wind,” said June.

Courtney Terlecki

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