Need to make a quick buck and don’t care about conducting business that’s either illegal or—at the very least—ethically reprehensible? Love the rush you get after screwing over some common sucker with a good con? Here’s an idea: buy a few pot-bellied piglets from a senile farmer who doesn’t ask questions, wrap a pretty pink bow around it, and sell it on Craigslist as “Mildred, a teacup pig in need of a loving home.” By the time friendly old Mildred begins revealing her true size, you’ll be hawking pot-bellied piglets to teacup-loving saps a few towns over.

If you don’t believe this to be a fruitful con, allow me to share the story of Janey Byrne, an accidental pot-bellied pig owner from northern England. Byrne and her husband purchased what they were told was a teacup pig, Meeka, in 2009, for $515. The piglet, reports the New York Post, “soon ballooned into a full-blown porker.”

They continue:

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They were actually Vietnamese Pot-Bellied Pigs, which typically grow to 200 pounds, unlike teacup pigs that top out at about 60 pounds.

“People noticed their rapid growth and said, ‘They’re not micro-pigs,’ but I wouldn’t listen to them,” Byrne, 47, told Caters News.

“I had no idea pigs could even grow this big!”

In BBC report from several years ago, Byrne shares that she and her husband Dave bought Molly, another pot-bellied pig, to give Meeka a “friend.” They appear to be a happy family, though Dave says he’s often annoyed by their grunts when he’s trying to watch the telly.

The Post writes that “medical care and food for the pigs can run up to $440 a month,” which includes arthritis treatment in the form of “horse medication [served] on a spoonful of jam.”

To find pot-bellied piglets for sale in your area, click here.


Image via screengrab.