Pearl the Pig Is Rescued After Abandonment by YouTuber

An online personality is under fire for irresponsibly homing his former pet pig.

Pearl the rescued pig relaxes at her animal sanctuary after being rescued

Courtesy of The Gentle Barn

Viral TikToks usually consist of a silly cooking hack or a large, fluffy dog cuddling with a tiny kitten, but the latest video posted by The Gentle Barn, a nonprofit animal sanctuary, is nothing like that.

Pearl the pig, as we now know her, was found this week abandoned in a California field next to a deceased pig

“She's clearly been through so much trauma that we can't begin to imagine, but she's now safe with us,” the TikTok caption says.

Pearl was found with torn and tattered ears, horrifically overgrown hooves, and a potentially life-threatening infection in her uterus, according to a statement obtained by Treehugger. 

“From what we’ve been told, it’s believed she was purchased originally from a breeder by an influencer,” the caption continues. “People often buy ‘mini pigs’ or ‘teacup pigs’ for clout online, believing they will stay small. When they inevitably grow very large and have many unexpected needs, they're sadly discarded.”

Thanks to the internet being the internet, TikTok sleuths quickly discovered the so-called “influencer” was Logan Paul, a YouTuber-turned-wrestler. According to a February 2020 tweet, Paul had bought the pig after “being told she was a mini pig.”

But when Paul decided to leave his Encino home and move to Puerto Rico during the pandemic, he rehomed Pearl to a nearby rancher, as he explained during a “TMZ Live” interview. Paul went on to explain that when that rancher moved to Nevada, Pearl was given away again, unbeknownst to him. 

As the online furor began to build against him, Paul wrote to The Gentle Barn, thanking them and promising a “token of his gratitude” to the sanctuary. The sanctuary’s spokesperson has not yet confirmed to any news outlets if it’s been received.

Online animal activists also admonished Paul for his irresponsible rehoming in the first place.

“Stop buying pigs unless you are able to care for them! same goes for any animal (obv there are sad exceptions where people have no choice but to rehome) but for a millionaire like logan paul?? he can absolutely do better to rehome a pet to someone/where ethical. i feel for pearl,” someone tweeted.

Others noted that there is no such thing as a “mini pig.” 

"Micro pigs DO NOT EXIST. This happens SO often and is devastating. Also another example of how normalised it is to use animals as a commodity and for clout. Logan Paul should be arrested for abuse and neglect," another tweeted.

"Teacup pigs," as they're also known, are a fictional breed that irresponsible breeders have made trendy in the last decade. Adult "mini pigs" can grow as large as 350 to 400 pounds, outgrowing their owners' homes, expectations, and affections.

"It’s so important that people understand that 'teacup' or 'micro' pigs such as Pearl don’t exist," The Gentle Barn wrote in its statement. "All pigs grow big, and if you are taking in a pig, you have to be aware of all of their needs and develop a plan of action for them as they grow."

Luckily, Pearl landed in just the right spot. “We’re feeding her organic fruits, veggies and grains to get her healthy and full of energy and giving her sound therapy,” The Gentle Barn's statement continued. “Pearl and her new potbelly pig family are now exploring together during the day and sleeping together at night. Her best friend is our pig Barry—they even snuggle together.”

You can follow Pearl’s journey and contribute to her care at The Gentle Barn pig’s sponsorship page.

Why This Matters to Treehugger

We are advocates of animal welfare, including our pets and other domestic animals. Animals large and small are often the spark that nudges someone to want to take better care of the planet. At Treehugger, we believe that sharing stories about animal rights can go a long way in inspiring people to want to live a more sustainable life.