At the Top of Their Lungs

I've never heard screams like this before. As I stood with my mouth hanging open, my heart pierced by each shriek, I couldn't help but look around me to see who else could hear. At this moment the difference between hearing and listening became ever-more potent. To those surrounding myself and the pigs, their cries for help were nothing but background noise. Those sounds, for me, are some I will never forget. 

How can Screams mean Smooth?

"There aren't enough OOOOOOs in the word Smooth to describe this trailer" he claims. 

Has he himself ever taken a ride in one of his trucks I wonder? Would it be fit for his pets and family? 

"Much better than standard trailers" he brags as you hear a pig scream. I call out "It isn't much better- Is it!" It was almost as if the pig shook his head "No!" 

Calling out- "I'm Right Here!"

I ran alongside this truck approaching the intersection, reaching out my arm and calling out "I'm right here." The pigs kept my gaze as the truck turned the final corner. 

The final truck I witnessed this morning was full of pigs screaming for freedom. I responded- "I hear you!" After a minute the pigs stopped screaming and the truck went almost completely silent. It was an extremely surreal moment to experience. It was almost as if a wave of peace wafted over us -just in that moment. 

I Wait for Hours

Sometimes I spend hours waiting outside the slaughterhouse to endure mere moments that pass by in the blink of an eye. Patiently waiting is the most surreal feeling in the world. Obviously I do not want the trucks carrying pigs to their slaughter to arrive. But if they are, I want to be there to document their suffering and expose it to the world. 

Pigs Without Teeth

I had never had my hand so far inside a pig's mouth. She placed all of my fingers and palm past her lips to rest on the bumpy roof of her mouth. I was startled when I felt not a single tooth- They are always so gentle but these pigs had all had their teeth trimmed/ground off shortly after birth. This is a standard industry practice I wasn't aware of until today- even after 3 years of experience and research. Just when you thought it couldn't get any worse...

Apologizing Ins't Enough

Honestly, it never gets easier. Some think I'm numb to the heart-ache, some wonder how I continue to do this. It has been over three years- each time feelings of never being able to do enough keep me coming back. 

When you meet these animals for yourself; being present, even offering love and sympathy simply isn't enough.

Oinks and Screams

Cries from both sides of the trailer. My own cry out to help; the pigs cry out for freedom. 

Whenever I approach a truck, I always scan the open grate holes for faces. I walked up to two snouts poking out at me and they affectionately came closer. The two pigs allowed me to pet their faces and one even reached out to lick my hand just like a puppy.

Rub Their Snouts Against My Nose

They are always so affectionate and forgiving. 

I'll never forget this moment. I felt overwhelmed by so many snouts peeking out at me as four pigs take turns rubbing their snouts against my nose. After experiencing such hurt by the harsh human hand, they still didn't hesitate to come closer to connect. 

How do you apologize for one of the worst crimes in human history? Actions speak louder than words.

Dehydrated Pig Dying For Water

A dehydrated pig dying for water. 

Signs of dehydration and heatstroke in pigs include heavy panting, a very high respiratory rate, muscle trembling and weakest or prostration. Heatstroke may be caused by high temperatures and expose to sunlight. This moment occurred on one of the hottest days of the summer; Truckload by the truckload animals suffer in these poorly ventilated trailers. 

During these scorching summer months, most pigs die on route to the slaughterhouse suffering these horrific conditions. 

Pig Suffers Rectal Prolapse

A pig suffers rectal prolapse due to dehydration and overcrowding. 

Rectal prolapse is the exteriorization or the protrusion of one of more layers of the rectum through the anus. Rectal prolapse occurs in pigs when muscles and ligaments are overcome by straining pressure arising from overcrowding force, coughing, dehydration, diarrhea and constipation. 

When animals are forced and overcrowded onto transport trucks, there is an increase in abdominal pressure which combined with dehydration will cause rectal prolapse to occur.