Sadly, some dog breeders don’t take potential health problems into account when breeding dogs. Chihuahua and Dachshund hybrid Piglet has dapple coloring in both of his parents. There is a 25% chance that a puppy with this coloring will be a “double dapple,” which is typically associated with the puppy being either completely or partially blind and deaf. Piglet, who unfortunately was one of those puppies, is totally blind and deaf, but he doesn’t let that stop him from being successful.
Piglet was given his name because as a young puppy, he was a light pink color. Although he is a sweet, adorable dog, his special needs required that he be placed in a home where his needs could be met.
Piglet was discovered in a hoarding situation with 37 other puppies in Georgia. He was then transferred to Connecticut, where he met Melissa Shapiro, a veterinarian. Shapiro initially intended to foster Piglet, but it didn’t take long for her to fall in love with him. She knew he belonged with her after only two months of fostering him.
Shapiro already had six dogs, but she was delighted to welcome another. Piglet is a lot of work for her, but he is definitely worth it.
Caring for Piglet felt like a full-time job at first. He was very attached to Shapiro and screamed whenever he was anxious, which was most of the time. He developed severe separation anxiety whenever Shapiro left the house, so she couldn’t even leave him alone for the first month.
Piglet settled into a routine and became more at ease in his new surroundings after a few months in his forever home. He enjoys playing with his siblings, going for walks, and traveling for work with Shapiro. He refused to let his special needs prevent him from living the life of a happy puppy.
When a third grade teacher in Plainville, Massachusetts heard about Piglet’s story, she decided to share it with her students. She told them about Piglet’s positive attitude and how it helped him overcome challenges. He also encourages children to accept and celebrate differences.
The students use Piglet to help them with their growth mindset, so they try to maintain a “Piglet state of mind,” and when faced with challenges, they ask themselves, “What would Piglet do?” The kids frequently send hand-drawn cards to Piglet, which both Shapiro and Piglet adore.
Piglet and his family also fundraise for special needs rescue dogs. They sell a wide range of Piglet merchandise, such as t-shirts, stickers, magnets, and bags. So far, they have raised more than $30,000!
Piglet’s website also includes a list of educational PDFs for use in classrooms. Piglet is an inspiration to both humans and dogs, and he works tirelessly to promote adoption and put smiles on people’s faces around the world.
Shapiro and Piglet will continue to assist and inspire others in the coming years. Piglet had a difficult childhood, but thanks to Shapiro, he is now a mascot of kindness and acceptance. Piglet’s story inspires others to adopt, particularly dogs with special needs like him. They may require additional attention, but they are undeniably worth the extra effort.