They do say that there is nothing happier than a pig in mud. But, that was before this picture came into existence.
The photograph, which is threatening to break the internet, shows a pig beaming whilst being taken to safety during extreme floods in the Sichuan Province of China. But, upon closer inspection there is something quite sinister captured on camera in this seemingly innocent photograph…
The pig was left behind in an outbuilding as extreme weather battered Yibin County, but luckily, rescuers were able to reach the stricken creature in time to drag it to safety.
Clearly, the pig was overjoyed by his rescue, but not as overjoyed as the internet was when they saw it. The image spawned a photoshop battle on Reddit, going viral in a matter of minutes.
Yes, within a few hours, everybody on Facebook and Twitter who had seen the happy hog just couldn’t help but express their joy at seeing something so positive come out of something so devastating. Except, nobody noticed this…
The exhausted pig certainly has a reason to smile as he is being rescued and hauled to dry land. This prompted many people online to assume the pigs was smiling out of happiness at being saved. But, others saw something much more upsetting, that will make you rethink your original thoughts on the photograph and bring a tear to your eye…
The devastating floods, which hit in early July 2017, left the provinces and regions of Guangxi, Guangdong, Hunan, Hubei, Jiangxi, Jiangsu, Anhui, Zhejiang, Shandong, Shaanxi, Yunnan, Sichuan, Gansu and Henan all under water. More than 8,100 houses were destroyed, and over 200 people lost their lives.
Therefore, when this image of a smiling pig hit the internet, people felt like there had been just a glimmer of happiness to come out of such tragedy.
But despite the fact the pig was seemingly displaying the same facial expression as I do when my friends are hauling me out of an Irish pub, many social media users expressed their concerns that not everything was as it seemed.
As you can see, the pig is dragged out of the water by two rescuers, who use its front legs a way to manoeuvre it through the knee deep water – and its ears
. Could it be that the pig is grimacing in pain, rather than smiling? Many people certainly seem to think this is the more plausible answer…
With the ears stretched back, it is very plausible that the corners of the animals mouth will also stretch with them, as pointed out by several users on Twitter, who didn’t see the funny side.
Others were more alarmed by what would happen to the pig once it was rescued. Would it live a full and happy life? Or, would it be destined for the breakfast plate?
Whilst the pig is now back on dry land, many of it’s online fans are concerned about it’s future. One thing is for sure, it will always be remembered as a meme icon for many years to come!