Coral Springs, FL – Kason Ray may soon have to part with his pet pig or his family will face a $500 daily fine. Kason has Down Syndrome and sometimes becomes agitated and frustrated. His family uses "Twinkie" the therapy pet pig to soothe the little boy.
A legal battle began brewing after the 8-year-old boy's mother bought the pet pig. She and her son opted for the less than traditional pet due to their older son's allergies. The 6-week-old Twinkie soon became a beloved member of the family and rarely ever left Kason's side, according to The Blaze.
The city of Coral Springs reportedly has an old ordinance against raising livestock. Little Twinkie is a violation of the rule and would cost the family a bundle in daily fines unless a compromise is reached in the matter. City officials only learned about the Down Syndrome boy's pet because the family requested a waiver to allow the $1,300 piglet to live inside their Florida home.
Heather Ray had this to say about the pet pig during an interview with ABC News:
"You know, he does get mad. He throws fits. He doesn't like things, and Twinkie has a very calming effect on him. It mellows him out, it calms him down. It's so good for him. He loves her so much.
A statement from Coral Spring's Communication and Marketing Director Bob Goehrig reads:
"A city ordinance does not allow pigs as pets. Pigs are considered livestock. If the Rays can show us there is a medical necessity and can bring documentation, we'll be glad to look into it."
Heather Ray insists that she has already sent all the documentation the city has requested. Kason's doctor even wrote a letter recommending that the pig be permitted as a therapy pet for the little boy.
When asked why she plans to keep fighting to allow Kason to keep his pet pig even though her previous request for a waiver was denied, Heather had this to say:
"For children with special needs, anyone with special needs, acceptance is a big deal. Unfortunately in our society, you know, people with special needs just are not always accepted. An animal loves you no matter what. They don't care what you look like, they don't care how you talk, how you walk, you know, they don't care, as long as you love them they love you unconditionally, so that's very important to him, for us to have that for him."