Kira’s Companions: ‘Your pig is in the river!’


Photo by Kira Gomez

Our backyard fence was wiped out this weekend during a storm that dropped up to 13 inches of rain in some areas of the island.

By Kira Gomez, staff writer

My family's chicken coop during the storm
My family’s chicken coop during the storm (Photo by Kira Gomez)

“Your pig is in the river!” were words I never expected to hear when my family got Arnold, our Juliana pig, a little over a year ago.

This past weekend, Maui was hit with a mother of a storm. Sports events were postponed, plans were canceled, and my back yard was wiped out.

I live upcountry, so I know it’s expected that the weather would be bad, I just didn’t expect the whole corner of the fence in my backyard to get cleaned out. Nor did I expect a whole river to pass through my backyard rather than through the gulch merely ten feet away, but I guess there come a lot of firsts when you’ve only lived in your new home for a year.

I appreciated the rain; I just didn’t appreciate the effect it had on my animals. Though they were kept out of harm’s way, there were some unexpected outcomes over the short two-day weekend:

The chicken coop was extremely muddy and looked like an island in my flooded back yard.

My golden retriever, Messi, had a lot of unknown objects in his hair after we groomed him.

And, my neighbor let us know my pig was in the river.

Arnold has always been an escape artist, and he has always been an adventurer. I just wished he hadn’t acted on those qualities in the middle of a storm. I was honestly surprised when our neighbor told us where he had gone because he doesn’t like the water. At. All.

Bathing him is extremely difficult, and you often find him gravitating to a nice, warm, sunny spot, rather than under a sprinkler like Messi. I feel like it’s partially my fault that he doesn’t enjoy the water. It was really hot one summer and I got the brilliant idea to get a kiddie pool for him to lounge in. It was great until he got the water in his face and up his snout. Yeah, he never stepped foot in that pool again, but it was nice while it lasted.

Lucky for us, he wasn’t doing anything crazy, just snuffling about in the river minding his business. My dad had to carry him out, but Arnold was fine and just walked away afterward.

It was a fun way to end that otherwise wet and muddy weekend. Now, we just gotta keep an eye out for him ’til the fence is fixed to make sure there are no more sightings of pigs, especially not Arnold, in the river.

Arnold the Juliana pig
Arnold the Juliana pig (Photo by Kira Gomez)