Pastis The Pig Lives High on The Hog in Belgian Retirement Home

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Azuria, a 15-year-old european cat, waits in a building at the association
Azuria, a 15-year-old european cat, waits in a building at the association "Les Petits Vieux" acting as home for dozens of elderly animals, including dogs, cats, pigs and goats, in Chievres, Belgium August 7, 2018. REUTERS/Yves Herman
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CHIEVRES, Belgium (Reuters)

Pastis the pot-bellied pig likes nothing better than snuggling down for the night with the ponies at his retirement home, but also enjoys playing with the elderly cats

The 10-year-old, 90-kg (200-pound) Vietnamese pot-bellied pig is one of 150 ageing animals, including dogs, goats, horses and sheep, living out their final days in peace at “Les Petits Vieux” (“The Little Old Ones”) in rural southern Belgium.

 

Belgian Valerie Luycx, a founder of the association "Les Petits Vieux" acting as home for dozens of elderly animals, including dogs, cats, pigs and goats, caresses Pastis, a 10-year-old Vietnamese pig, in Chievres
Belgian Valerie Luycx, a founder of the association “Les Petits Vieux” acting as home for dozens of elderly animals, including dogs, cats, pigs and goats, caresses Pastis, a 10-year-old Vietnamese pig, in Chievres, Belgium August 7, 2018. REUTERS/Yves Herman

 

All the animals either have health problems or have been abandoned because their owners were too old to care for them.

They are never in cages and are free to play with each other, indoors and out, although many choose to merely lounge quietly on the sofas.

 

Belgian Valerie Luycx, a founder of the association "Les Petits Vieux" acting as home for elderly animals sits next to Chasse, a goat, in Chievres
Belgian Valerie Luycx, a founder of the association “Les Petits Vieux” acting as home for elderly animals, including dogs, cats, pigs and goats, sits next to Chasse, a goat, in Chievres, Belgium August 7, 2018. REUTERS/Yves Herman

 

“We wanted to recreate family life for the animals,” said Valerie Luycx, who founded the shelter in 2000 with her husband Serge and knows all the animals by name.

 

(Reporting by Yves Herman, writing by Julia Echikson; editing by Robert-Jan Bartunek and Robin Pomeroy)

 

Belgian Valerie Luycx, a founder of the association "Les Petits Vieux" acting as home for dozens of elderly animals, including dogs, cats, pigs and goats, caresses Pastis, a 10-year-old Vietnamese pig, in Chievres
Belgian Valerie Luycx, a founder of the association “Les Petits Vieux” acting as home for dozens of elderly animals, including dogs, cats, pigs and goats, caresses Pastis, a 10-year-old Vietnamese pig, in Chievres, Belgium August 7, 2018. REUTERS/Yves Herman

 

Calin, a European cat, is seen at the association "Les Petits Vieux" acting as home for dozens of elderly animals, including dogs, cats, pigs and goats, in Chievres
Calin, a European cat, is seen at the association “Les Petits Vieux” acting as home for dozens of elderly animals, including dogs, cats, pigs and goats, in Chievres, Belgium August 7, 2018. REUTERS/Yves Herman

 

Caracol, a ten-years old Spanish Galgo, rests on a sofa at the association "Les Petits Vieux", home for dozens of elderly animals, including dogs, cats, pigs and goats in Chievres
Caracol, a ten-years old Spanish Galgo, rests on a sofa at the association “Les Petits Vieux”, home for dozens of elderly animals, including dogs, cats, pigs and goats in Chievres, Belgium August 7, 2018. REUTERS/Yves Herman

 

Calin, a European cat, is seen at the association "Les Petits Vieux", home for dozens of elderly animals, including dogs, cats, pigs and goats in Chievres
Calin, a European cat, is seen at the association “Les Petits Vieux”, home for dozens of elderly animals, including dogs, cats, pigs and goats in Chievres, Belgium August 7, 2018. REUTERS/Yves Herman

 

Victor, a 15-year-old Galgo Hound, sits on a sofa next to Belgian Valerie Luycx, a founder of the association "Les Petits Vieux" acting as home for dozens of elderly animal in Chievres
Victor, a 15-year-old Galgo Hound, sits on a sofa next to Belgian Valerie Luycx, a founder of the association “Les Petits Vieux” acting as home for dozens of elderly animals, including dogs, cats, pigs and goats in Chievres, Belgium August 7, 2018. REUTERS/Yves Herman

 

Belgian Valerie Luycx, a founder of the association "Les Petits Vieux" acting as home for elderly animals, stands next to a dog in Chievres
Belgian Valerie Luycx, a founder of the association “Les Petits Vieux” acting as home for dozens of elderly animals, including dogs, cats, pigs and goats, stands next to Yam, a 9-year-old Saint Bernard, in Chievres, Belgium August 7, 2018. REUTERS/Yves Herman

 

Belgian Valerie Luycx, a founder of the association "Les Petits Vieux" acting as home for dozens of elderly animals, including dogs, cats, pigs and goats, looks at Pastis, a 10-year-old Vietnamese pig, in Chievres
Belgian Valerie Luycx, a founder of the association “Les Petits Vieux” acting as home for dozens of elderly animals, including dogs, cats, pigs and goats, looks at Pastis, a 10-year-old Vietnamese pig, in Chievres, Belgium August 7, 2018. REUTERS/Yves Herman

 

Belgian Valerie Luycx, a founder of the association "Les Petits Vieux" sits with dogs in Chievres
Belgian Valerie Luycx, a founder of the association “Les Petits Vieux” acting as home for dozens of elderly animals, including dogs, cats, pigs and goats, sits with Choupy, a 14-year-old Yorkshire, Ramses, a 9-year-old Carlin and Moogly, a 13-year-old Maltese dog, in Chievres, Belgium August 7, 2018. REUTERS/Yves Herman

 

Cats and goats live together at the association "Les Petits Vieux" acting as home for dozens of elderly animals, in Chievres
Cats and goats live together at the association “Les Petits Vieux” acting as home for dozens of elderly animals, including dogs, cats, pigs and goats, in Chievres, Belgium August 7, 2018. REUTERS/Yves Herman

 

Belgian Valerie Luycx, a founder of the association "Les Petits Vieux" acting as home for elderly animals, sits among some of the hundreds of pets, in Chievres
Belgian Valerie Luycx, a founder of the association “Les Petits Vieux” acting as home for elderly animals, sits among some of the hundreds of pets, including dogs, cats, pigs and goats, in Chievres, Belgium August 7, 2018. REUTERS/Yves Herman

 

Belgian Valerie Luycx, a founder of the association "Les Petits Vieux" acting as home for dozens of elderly animals caresses Calin, a European cat, in Chievres
Belgian Valerie Luycx, a founder of the association “Les Petits Vieux” acting as home for dozens of elderly animals, including dogs, cats, pigs and goats, caresses Calin, a European cat, in Chievres, Belgium August 7, 2018. REUTERS/Yves Herman

 

Belgian Valerie Luycx, a founder of the association "Les Petits Vieux" acting as home for elderly animals, stands among some of the hundreds of pets, in Chievres
Belgian Valerie Luycx, a founder of the association “Les Petits Vieux” acting as home for elderly animals, stands among some of the hundreds of pets, including dogs, cats, pigs and goats, in Chievres, Belgium August 7, 2018. REUTERS/Yves Herman

 

A dog is seen at the association "Les Petits Vieux" acting as home for dozens of elderly animals, in Chievres
A dog is seen at the association “Les Petits Vieux” acting as home for dozens of elderly animals, including dogs, cats, pigs and goats, in Chievres, Belgium August 7, 2018. REUTERS/Yves Herman

 

Dogs are seen at the association "Les Petits Vieux" acting as home for dozens of elderly animals, in Chievres
Dogs are seen at the association “Les Petits Vieux” acting as home for dozens of elderly animals, including dogs, cats, pigs and goats, in Chievres, Belgium August 7, 2018. REUTERS/Yves Herman

 

Belgian Valerie Luycx, a founder of the association "Les Petits Vieux" acting as home for elderly animals, sits among some of the hundreds of pets, in Chievres
Belgian Valerie Luycx, a founder of the association “Les Petits Vieux” acting as home for elderly animals, sits among some of the hundreds of pets, including dogs, cats, pigs and goats, in Chievres, Belgium August 7, 2018. REUTERS/Yves Herman

 

Belgian Valerie Luycx, a founder of the association "Les Petits Vieux" sits with dogs, in Chievres
Belgian Valerie Luycx, a founder of the association “Les Petits Vieux” acting as home for dozens of elderly animals, including dogs, cats, pigs and goats, sits with Choupy, a 14-year-old Yorkshire, and Ramses, a 9-year-old Carlin, in Chievres, Belgium August 7, 2018. REUTERS/Yves Herman

 

 

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