Babe the pet pig will be allowed to stay at home in Hochelaga, city rules
3-year-old pot-bellied pig has been living with Montreal family since 2015
A 60-pound, pot-bellied pig named Babe will be allowed to stay with his owners in Hochelaga-Maisonneuve after all, despite an earlier notice from the City of Montreal giving the family 15 days to get rid of their beloved pet.
Hochelaga borough mayor Pierre Lessard-Blais met with Babe's owners on Monday morning and told them that the situation would have a happy ending.
Babe's owner Mario Jorge Ramos said that while the details aren't nailed down, the mayor assured him Babe would be "regularized" — leaving him to oink and snuffle to his heart's content.
"We're very happy, and very relieved," said Ramos.
Officially, pigs are not considered legal pets under the city's animal control bylaws.
When Ramos and his wife Sara-Maude Ravenelle first got Babe in 2015, the pet policy varied from borough to borough and their new addition to the family was permitted.
In 2016, when the former Coderre administration passed breed-specific legislation, banning all pit bull-type dogs, animal control was centralized.
Tipped off by a neighbour, an animal inspector visited their home the second week of April and said Babe would have to go.
The family took to social media, posting a video that was shared thousands of times.
Ravenelle described Babe as harmless, saying that he got along well with the three cats and toddler who share the apartment.
"My pig isn't aggressive, he's gentle, friendly and has a paternal instinct with my daughter. I've never been afraid for her. He's really as smart as a child of four years old," said Ravenelle.
The city is in the process of redoing its animal control bylaw and a spokesperson told Radio-Canada that while there hadn't been any other complaints about domestic pigs, they would evaluate any that do come in on a case-by-case basis.
In 2016, a similar case involving a domestic pig made headlines in Trois-Rivières. The municipality argued that the pig, Bacon, should go and live on a farm, not in a house and ticketed the owner.
In the spring of 2017, the municipal court of Trois-Rivières ruled in favour of Bacon, who had received the support from thousands of people who signed a petition in support of him.
With files from Radio-Canada's Romain Schué