Imagine being locked in a room. Suddenly water begins to seep in from the windows and the cracks in the walls. There is no escape. The water slowly begins to rise and you start to panic. You try to keep your head above water until you can no longer. Then you give in. Your nose and throat begin to burn. Your stomach fills up with water. Then your lungs fill up with water. Then you die.

Hurricane Florence began at sea on the 31st of August 2018 and hit North Carolina (US) on the 14th of September. Hurricane Florence caused widespread destruction (over 27 people died) however this is far less than the damage that would have been caused if not for the fantastic evacuations that took place. There were evacuations of people, evacuations of domestic animals, even zoo animals when necessary, but the factory-farmed animals… they were left behind. 

North Carolina has the second highest number of pigs in the United States, so it comes as no surprise that over 5,500 pigs died during Hurricane Florence.

They were left in their barns to drown.

The cover photo at the top of this article shows a number of pig sheds that were submerged in water. I don’t want to argue whether the pigs would have a ‘better’ death by drowning, starvation or in a slaughter house. None of these should be an option. 

Pigs are often compared to dogs. They both have two ears, two eyes, four legs and one nose, but aside from the obvious they share a similar level of intelligence and awareness. So imagine if someone had left their 5,500 dogs to die in a barn during Hurricane Florence – there would be uproar! However, they were not dogs, they were pigs, and therefore there is no uproar outside of the vegan community. Far more concern has been shown for the farmers and the possible dip in their income. 

Sadly, pigs are considered to be merchandise. So the farmers were able to leave their pigs behind to die because they would get an insurance pay out for the loss of their “inventory”.  

The pictures above are of “merchandise” trying to escape the flooding from Hurricane Floyd that hit North Carolina on 15th of September 1999. The photos of pigs trying to escape Hurricane Florence have not been released yet. 

On top of everything else, 3.4 million chickens (huge number, right?!) are suspected to have died due to either drowning or starvation… But don’t worry, because the farmers will just breed more once they get a payout from their insurance provider.

Those 3.4 million lives didn’t matter to the farmer, but they matter to me.

If you’re not comfortable with the way animals are being treated on factory farms, then do something about it. 

Thanks for reading 💚