HOUSTON — An emotional support pig that was in a car stolen from a California family visiting Texas was found dead, investigators said.
Mandy Oslin said on their first day of vacation in Houston, Honey, their 180-pound mini pig, was inside their car when it was stolen Wednesday outside of their La Quinta hotel room, KHOU reported.
“We’re devastated for sure. She’s definitely more than just a pet,” Oslin said. “It was a horrible introduction to Houston, for sure.”
Oslin said she left Honey in the car while she got her children unpacked in the room. When she returned to get Honey, the car was gone. She was found Thursday in the stolen car and died later that night. A necropsy will determine her cause of death.
A Jersey Village police officer saw Honey, still alive at 3:55 a.m. Thursday in the back of a running car in the parking lot at a Quality Inn, KHOU reported. Because there was no indication the car was stolen, the officer only mentioned the vehicle to the manager, turned it off, put the keys beneath the seat and left, KPRC reported.
“Since the vehicle had not been entered into the TCIC/NCIC system as a stolen vehicle at this time, and the officer had no indication it was a stolen vehicle, the officer returned to the vehicle and turned it off to prevent it from being stolen,” Jersey Village Police Chief K. Riggs said in a statement.
Honey was barely alive when another officer saw the parked car with the pig inside around 5:20 p.m., KHOU reported. That officer called Harris County Precinct 5, who sent a livestock unit to pick up the pig, who later died, KPRC reported. Video shows the stolen car arrive in the hotel parking lot around 8:17 a.m. Wednesday. The pig was believed to have been in the vehicle for 30 hours, KHOU reported.
The suspect seen driving the stolen car is described as about 6 feet tall and 185 pounds with a medium-brown skin tone, KHOU reported. He was last seen wearing a black beanie, red T-shirt with white lettering, dark colored shorts and black Nike shoes.
The family got Honey as a pet around the time the coronavirus pandemic started.
“As kind of like a healthy distraction, and we’ve trained her to do all kinds of things. She alerts us if anyone is going to have a panic attack,” Oslin said. “Pigs are smarter than dogs, so she can pick up on cues that other animals and even people can’t. So she lets us know when things are about to hit the fan.”
Cox Media Group