This week we’ve been in stitches as a pit bull was dubbed “captain cheese puff” after he got his head stuck in a snack jar and been delighted by the unlikely story of the discovery that two rescue dogs are mother and daughter.
We’ve also been thrilled by reader submissions of pets from around the country and worked hard to choose this week’s Newsweek Pet of the Week.
Remember, if you think your pet could be part of our Pet of the Week lineup, scroll to the bottom of this page to find out how to get involved.
This week our pet of the week is Wilbur the feral six-year-old pig who showed up at a ranch one day and refused to leave.
Anne West lives in California and she was amazed when a young pig just showed up in her yard.
“Wil bridges the gap between wild animals and pets, in an eye-opening way. We humans should all sit up and take notice of this very cool concept,” West told Newsweek. “This pig followed me on foot for miles when I hiked with him, during the 5 weeks he stayed on our ranch. He chased our Jeep in frantic separation anxiety whenever we drove away from our home. He snored on our porch at night, and even made friends with the dog.”
Wil’s unwavering trust in West meant that he stayed with them until she found an appropriate rescue home for the pig. Unfortunately, it isn’t legal in California to capture and make a pet of a wild pig and so he would need to be taken in somewhere safe away from potential hunters.
“It took me five weeks and much networking effort to find a sanctuary to accept him,” explained West. “He loves sweet potatoes and strawberries as well as boiled eggs and cheese biscuits. He is crazy about bananas and likes anyone with a dog treat to share.”
“His favorite things are dancing to music and getting back scratches and hot tub soaks. He adores people and snacks,” added West.
West found Monica Stevens from domestic animal rescue sanctuary Jameson Humane and she agreed to take Wilbur the pig.
With over 80 animals, including 12 pigs, they were the perfect people to take care of Wil.
“Wilbur is quite the interior designer! He loves to decorate his enclosure with his straw bedding and branches—all must be placed perfectly,” Stevens told Newsweek. “And, he is incredibly smart. [He] puts a smile on all of our faces every day.”
“Nothing pleased him more than the garden hose as his personal shower, followed by a bamboo pole back-scratch. He would grunt in great delight,” said West. “Thanks to the joint efforts of Monica and my husband and me, this sassy wild pig is alive.”
Our first finalist this week is Sawyer the golden retriever.
Owner MaryLiz Lentz lives with her beloved pup in Virginia and told Newsweek that Sawyer is “the best dog a person could own.”
“He definitely is the “typical” pure breed golden retriever—fun, derpy, smart, silly, loving,” she said.
A speech therapist in her working life, Lentz hopes that Sawyer can eventually be trained to be a therapy dog and assist clients during her sessions. “He is so so good, and has great patience with other dogs and people,” she said. “He loves running errands with me, meeting other dogs, getting pup cups from Starbucks.”
Our second finalist this week is rescue dog Heidi, who was found on the streets of Modesto, California.
Now adopted and happily living with owner Cynthia Typaldos and her other dogs, she is a friendly pup working on her training.
Typaldos told Newsweek: “In summer 2021 I adopted her from a resident who had found her and then linked her up with local rescue. Heidi has taken basic training and is now learning ‘nosework’ aka scent training.”
Enjoying finding scents and testing out her skills, she recently passed a qualifying trial for her scent training and will soon be entered into merit trials.
While not much is known about Heidi’s past, a dog DNA test revealed that she is a mix of 14 breeds.
“Heidi loves everyone, and all other dogs,” said Typaldos.
Our last finalist this week is Bichon and poodle mix Ollie.
This four-year-old pup was adopted by owner Genevieve Allen from Phoenix, Arizona last March and she told Newsweek that he is “the love of my life.”
“His happiness and joy for life arrived in my life quite fatefully when I most needed it,” said Allen. “His goofiness makes me laugh on a daily basis. Ollie is just so amazingly cute that people often ask me, ‘Is he real??’ in utter delight.”
A big fan of meeting new dogs and new people, Allen says that Ollie even gets excited to go to the vet: “If you met Ollie, you would love him too,” she added.
Do you have funny and adorable videos or pictures of your pet you want to share? Send them to firstname.lastname@example.org with some details about your best friend and they could appear in our Pet of the Week lineup.