The Western Slope is home to many different animal shelters but one in particular is looking for some needed assistance this winter season.
Pig-A-Sus is a unique animal shelter in our area that takes in rescued Potbelly pigs, but owner, Sioux Bartles, is finding it rather hard to keep all these farm animals warm during these frigid cold temperatures.
“They're very smart, they're very loving and they're very caring,” said Bartles.
The safe haven, which has been around since 1994, is home to 67 pigs all with a name. However, because of the long and record low temperatures we've been seeing, Bartles says the pigs are in immediate danger; some are already suffering from medical problems.
“We have 22 that are elderly and are aged 12-23,” said Bartles. “We have those in heated huts but the rest of them are bare in the winter.”
This is why they’re looking to the community to donate used blankets to keep warm.
“They snuggle under it, cuddle up,” said Bartles. “If we have really hard winds or the wind chill drops down real low, we will hang them at night over the doors to stop the drafts.”
Local veterinarians say as we head further into winter and approach calving and lambing season, things could get worse for these animals, as their babies are born.
“Farmers and ranchers really have to be right there and get them dried off,” said Dr. Ian Smith, veterinarian. “They must have their heat lamps there and ready to go or they are going to see frost bitten ears or death.”
“The animal shelters that are around the area, they're all inside,” said Bartles. “But think about the animals that are on the outside.”
Bartels says one blanket donated, is one pig saved, which gives a whole new meaning to the term "Pigs in a Blanket."
If you would like to donate a blanket to the cause, Mesa County AmeriCorps is serving as a drop off location. They’re located at 1129 Colorado Avenue in Grand Junction and can be reached at 244-0633.
For more information on Pig-A-Sus, click here
or call 858-9628.