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  • Last modified 206 days ago (March 24, 2021)

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Wee-wee-weeing all the way home a bit too often

Staff writer

A rural Florence man’s pigs have hogged up so much of his deputies’ time, the sheriff took a report about the roving rooters to the county attorney’s office Friday.

As recently as that same day, Stan Ammeter’s pigs were happily pigging out in a neighbor’s field.

Deputies have been called to the area numerous times after neighbors squealed about the hogs hoofing it onto their property — again.

In just this past week, the pigs refused to go “wee-wee-wee” all the way home.

“We’ve have had to chase down roaming pigs several times,” Craft said. “We’ve been out there the last couple of days.”

The pigs — a mixture of both full-sized pigs and potbelly pigs — have been reported running loose as far back as June, Craft said.

Ammeter admits he has had trouble keeping them in their pens.

“They’re very smart. It’s not that much for them to get through,” he said. “They are not a typical pig.”

The pigs have ranged in number from seven to 14.

“They’ve multiplied,” Craft said.

Ammeter said he has six or eight shoats between two sows.

“I got these because I had some friends that thought they might want pigs for their grandkids,” he said. “Until they became available. I am in the process of trying to get rid of them.”

Not only have people called the sheriff’s office about the pigs, they have contacted fish and game authorities.

The sheriff’s office has no authority to shoot pigs unless they are attacking or threatening people or other animals, Craft said.

“We have no ability or desire to shoot animals or domestic animals,” he said. “If they’re just being pigs, no we cannot.”

But if the pigs become feral, that changes.

“If the pigs continue to be allowed to be free-roaming, they will be considered feral pigs,” Craft said.

Anyone, property owner or deputy, can shoot a feral pig.

Deputies have spoken to Ammeter more than once.

“We’ve spoken to the owner of the pigs, who has been advised very firmly to keep his pigs contained,” he said.

It doesn’t seem to matter. Ammeter puts them back in their pen, but do they stay in? Not by the hair on their chinny-chin-chin.

Pigs by nature root around and damage property.

“Animal owners have a responsibility to do their best to contain their animals, whether it be livestock or pets,” Craft said.

Deputies understand that animals sometimes get loose, but when the animals are repeatedly roaming, that’s a different thing, he said.

“They’re not being aggressively contained,” Craft said. “I certainly hope he contains them.”

Craft said that not only could criminal charges be filed against Ammeter for allowing the pigs to roam free, neighbors whose property the pigs damage could sue him.

Ammeter said his neighbors have been understanding and he plans to reinforce the pigs pen.

“I hope to get it built and put and end to all of that,” he said.

Last modified March 24, 2021

 

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