Mayor’s pig one step closer to home |

Mayor’s pig one step closer to home

Dave Frank

Mayor Bob Crowell is one step away from bringing home his nearly blind, arthritic pet pot-bellied pig named Arnold.

The Carson City Board of Supervisors passed an updated animal ordinance that allows people on residential properties to own up to two 150-pound pot-bellied pigs, four female chickens or four female ducks. The board will have to pass the ordinance a second time to make it law.

Crowell did not vote on the ordinance and sat in the audience during the discussion.

He said he didn’t want to abstain from voting on the issue, but it was the right thing to do.

“It’s one that’s close to my heart,” he said.

Crowell had to give away Arnold to an animal rescue group during his successful run for mayor in the fall. He had owned Arnold for more than 10 years, but animal services told him pot-bellied pigs and other livestock weren’t allowed in most residential areas in the city.

Supervisor Shelly Aldean said the public should know Crowell himself has not pushed for the ordinance change.

Crowell gave away Arnold when he was told to and has cooperated with Carson City Animal Services, she said.

“I don’t want people to think this is self-serving,” she said.

City staff want to clarify the code because it is outdated, said Pat Wiggins, animal services director.

They also wanted to make the law more “pet friendly” and similar to animal ordinances in surrounding counties, he said.

After supervisors passed the ordinance, Aldean asked Crowell about his plans if change is passed a second time.

“Are we having a coming-home party for Arnold?” she said.

“We’ll see,” he said. “I think so.”

This is not the first time the city has argued Crowell should get Arnold back.

As his last act as mayor, former three-term Mayor Marv Teixeira issued a proclamation Jan. 5 “pardoning” the pig as part of what Teixeira called Arnold’s Plight Awareness Day.

The district attorney’s office said the proclamation had no legal authority, but Teixeira said he didn’t have to check the law before issuing the pardon.

“Did I have the power to do that?” Teixeira said in January. “I didn’t even check. It was the right thing to do, and I did it.”