Pig — the name of this Akita mutt — is not one of those ridiculous photoshops of animals with short necks. She was born like this in the woods north-east of Atlanta. Nobody gave a damn for her life except her owner, Kim Dillenbeck: "The lady who found her, the vet told her to have her put down."
I met some of her neighbours who came over for Christmas breakfast, and after hearing about Pig, we all went to her house. I bonded with Pig right away. I thought I'd either be with her or near her helping her find a home.
Pretty quickly, I decided to be her mother because she probably wouldn't live. We assumed that by now, she would be suffocating under her own organs, or something like that, because of her shape.
Pig is missing part of her spine, several ribs and "her hips and joints are rotated in the wrong positions". But, according to Dillenbeck, "Pig doesn't know there's anything wrong with her". She's now eight months old and 6.8kg, which about less than half the weight a dog of her size and age should be.
However, don't smile and go awwwwww just yet. The sad news is that Pig is not fully grown yet, as Dillenbeck told Al.com: "She's still gaining weight. At this point, she has the potential to gain another 9.1kg and that would probably kill her." Dillenbeck says she feels very lucky to have Pig in her life, even while she knows she's going to die sooner than a normal dog.
But that is life. Until that sad moment comes, she'll be happy and very loved. And that's all that matters, really.