Photography by Danny Fulgencio

Neighbors strolling through Town Creek may do a double take when they see a pig being walked on a leash. That’s Piggy, Claire and Paul Reyes’ appropriately named pet.

“She likes to stop a lot to dig and smell things,” Claire says. “It’s pretty frustrating.”

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The Reyes family received Piggy as a gift from Santa Claus for their 10-year-old daughter, Lily.

“The fall before Santa brought her a pig, she had a pretty catastrophic knee injury,” Claire says. “Lily was in a leg brace for nine months as a 10-year-old, which is not fun.”

Lily was benched during club soccer, and Piggy was her reward for being gracious and positive through it all. She wanted a pig because they’re hypoallergenic, and she’s allergic to certain animals.Now, Piggy spends her days eating treats.

“She’s always very hungry,” Lily says. “She really likes oats, carrots and bananas. She just eats the whole banana, peel and all.”

Piggy is also an escape artist. They keep her in a chicken coop, built by the previous homeowners, but she always manages to break loose.

One day, they witnessed Piggy taking the chicken coop wire down and squeezing herself through the open slat in the fence.

“She’s very smart,” Lily says.

Besides breaking out, Piggy alternates between digging in the dirt and sleeping in the sun.

“We get people saying, ‘We love looking at your pig,’ because you can see her through the flaps in the front,” Claire says. “She’ll sit there and wag her tail at people.”

Fully grown now, Piggy is 35 pounds. She was only 3 months old and 5 pounds when she first arrived.

She’s maintained her friendly nature. She doesn’t bite, and she lets people rub her belly. Piggy can be shy, but she loves sitting next to a fire in winter.

Lily has been angling for another pig.

“Piggy needs a friend,” she says.