I remember it was winter when we got Bill. I can't remember who gave Dad the two pigs, I am guessing they were about 20 pounds each. Maybe a couple of months old. One was black the other was red. We named the black one Bill and the red one was Sally. All they had to get in out of the cold was a metal 55-gallon drum. I told Dad they would be too cold and he said they will be fine. I went out to feed them the next morning and Sally was dead. I do not know if it was the cold that killed her or if she had something wrong, what I do remember was crying, I cried so hard and blamed Dad for not having something warm for them to get in. You have to bear in mind I was like 7 or 8 years old and thinking back if it was the cold, both would have died.
We had Bill until the day we had to move, I can still see him standing in a big cage on someone's trailer, I was 7 or 8 when we got him and I was just 3 months shy of turning 16 when we left so we had him 8 or 9 years. He had 6-inch tusks and weighed close to 500 pounds and loved beer. He would not hurt a fly. My youngest brother used to ride him like a horse.
Sometimes he would get out of his pen and scare the campers, they would come running like a bunch of squealing chickens, telling Dad there was a monster of a boar hog in the campground. Most of the time I would be the one who had to get him back in his pen. All I had to do was grab him by one of his ears and he would walk with me back to his pen. He was the one pet that lasted the longest. This is the only picture I have of him. I think I was 10 or 11 when this was taken.
We had a beagle named Mitzy she was the damnest dog, she would hunt coons even going in the water after one. She passed away and I was the one who found her, the only thing I remember about that day, other than crying, was her eyes, they were open and had some sort of yellow goo in them.
I had a black cat named Samantha who had a bad case of mange. One day Dad had my oldest brother hold her down and he took his knife and scraped open the sores. Then he took a rag soaked in kerosene and wet her down in it. I was crying and he sent me away, but I just went around the corner where I could see what he was doing. I thought he was going to kill my cat. A few weeks later she did not have mange anymore and she had the blackest, softest shiniest fur, she was beautiful. Looking back I now understand what Dad was doing, but I still think it was painful and I am glad that they now have medicine for mange.
I had a pet pelican, he would follow me everywhere, for the life of me I can not remember his name. I would catch fish and feed him. He became a pet because something had happened to one of his wings and he could no longer fly so he depended on us for food. One day I had a snapper that I wanted to clean and have Dad cook for me, I was walking to the house and he kept trying to get my fish. I was not much taller than he was and with my arm lifted over my head, he would peck trying to reach the fish. Dad saw what was going on and he thought the pelican was going to poke me in the eye, I only have one good eye. Dad grabbed the pelican by the neck and tried to wring his neck like people do a chicken. He would twirl it around a few times then throw it out into the water. The pelican thought it was a game and would swim back to Dad. I was screaming I won't keep any more fish don't kill him. Dad sent me to the house and I never saw the pelican again.
Sometimes people would leave their pets when they left. One was a one-eyed dog it was a Pekinese. It would hump any leg that got close enough to him. I had him for a few months and one day Dad gave it to a lady that came to camp she liked him. Dad was always mad at it when it tried humping his leg.