Today our team checked on a pig truck parked at a gas station along a highway in Poland. The loading density and headspace were acceptable and within the EU legal requirements. However, on the first floor there was not a partition set in place. During our quick check we heard a strange whining sound coming from the trailer and took a good look inside to identify which pig was making it. We found a pig with an enormous mass under her belly. It was possibly a hernia that got out of control without treatment. The driver confirmed to us that he found her fit enough for transport because she had been apparently been able to walk into the truck on her own. But in our opinion, transport of such an animal is bound to cause additional stress as she was prone to being trampled and was having difficulty standing up and walking. We feel confident that she was not fit for transport and thus her being on board the truck was not in accordance with the EU legal requirements. The farmer should have treated her much earlier or euthanized her, instead of neglecting her state and letting her condition get to this point. On board we also saw a pig with a rectal prolapse of about 10cm diameter. This pig should have also not been allowed to be transport but instead treated on time.
Our team contacted the Polish road authorities (Katowice WITD). They were not able to stop the truck that was on its way to a slaughterhouse on time but our photos and observational details were sent to the official veterinarian from this region. The veterinarian will inquire with the slaughterhouse veterinarian about the state both those pigs arrived in and we put in a request that the farm where both pigs came from be inspected, to be sure that there are not more pigs like that in a neglected state. We will remain in touch with the Polish authorities about this case.