HOMES are being sought for nine pot-bellied pigs abandoned on a mountain just three days ago.
The male pigs, which are up to four months old, were found on Mount Leinster in Co Wexford after being dumped in the woods by their unscrupulous owner who was probably unable to sell them.
Heather Wall, from South East Animal Rescue, said each would fetch between €50 and €150, but they were not suitable for consumption.
"They're about 12-16 weeks old, and were found at Mount Leinster three days ago," she said.
"They were obviously dumped in the woods there and we would think they were bred for the Christmas trade for selling pet pigs. The boys are harder to home than girls because they're territorial, and they would have to be castrated.
"There could be two litters here, we're not sure. There used to be a great trade in them, but not now. They can't be eaten, and they're bred as pets. We have them in a foster home, and they're all together."
Another four of the domesticated pigs, which originate in Vietnam, were also surrendered on Thursday evening, bringing the number to be rehoused to 13.
Ms Wall said there had been a lot of interest, and they expected to find new homes "very quickly".
The animals were relatively easy to keep, she added. "They're about the height of a Jack Russell now, but they will get fairly big," she said. "They'd grow to be about the size of a sheep."