City Wants Family to Get Rid of Emotional Support Pig

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Doctor's orders may not be enough to keep an emotional support pig with a Missouri family.

Pickles has been living with the Buff family for more than a year. The mom, Debbie, has depression and anxiety after losing her oldest son last year. She told KMOV that Pickles "brings a sense of peace and comforts me when I need it."

Debbie's other son, Aiden, is living with autism, and she says Pickles helps him as well. Debbie even got a note from her doctor recommending the family should be able to keep the pig

But the city of Festus says Pickles has to go. Festus has an ordinance banning livestock from living in the city. The fine for violating it is $250 each day.

"Animals classified as livestock in this case a pig, or mini pig cannot be kept as pets,” City Administrator Greg Camp told KMOV.

Camp says the city council spent months debating whether they should amend the rule, but they ultimately chose not to.

“Someone would perhaps rightfully or wrongfully take advantage of that new opening in the ordinance,” Camp said.

Debbie is continuing to challenge the ordinance by rallying her community. She has started a petition to keep Pickles, and it has 3,000 signatures.


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