Seventeen-year-old Olivia Head has always had a heart for rescuing animals, a trait that she says was inspired by her mom.
“I come from a rescue background,” Head says. “I grew up on a farm with lots of animals that my mom acquired over the years, including two pot belly pigs, Pixie and Penelope.”
When Penelope passed away, Head began to search for another pig. “I was looking to purchase a ‘teacup’ pig, and I ended up stumbling upon a rescue group called A Critters Chance in Plainfield. I adopted from ACC and just fully submerged myself in the porcine species. I began to volunteer with ACC and eventually started to foster pigs for them, too.”
Head admits that she never really saw herself starting her own rescue. “I was very comfortable just fostering,” she says. “However, the longer I fostered, the more it was clear that it would not be enough. I was inundated on the daily with surrender requests.”
Seeing the huge need for a pig rescue in her community, Head began her own nonprofit rescue organization called Oinking Acres Pig Rescue and Sanctuary. Located in Brownsburg, the rescue has taken in 235 unwanted, abused, neglected and abandoned pot belly pigs since it began in 2017. And although Oinking Acres mainly accepts pot belly pigs, they also take in rabbits, ducks, chickens, peacocks, goats and other farm animals.
“I have a very hard time saying no to any animal in need,” Head says. “As long as I feel we have the adequate space and funding to care for other farm animals, we welcome them in.”
Head’s ultimate goal for Oinking Acres is to change the world one pig at a time, one goat at a time, one chicken at a time.
“My hope is that one day, there won’t be a need for a pig rescue,” Head says. “Through education and advocacy, I think it is a feasible goal.” To help with Head’s goal, you can become a patron or volunteer to help on the farm. Find out more information by visiting oinkingacres.org/how-to-help.
Currently, Oinking Acres offers tours, and encourages the public to visit and learn about pigs and farm animals. To set up a tour, visit oinking acres.org/tours.