With thousands of fans, he’s undoubtedly the world’s most illustrious pig on wheels (and he’s about to get even more famous!), Chris P. Bacon took some time from his busy schedule to answer a few questions for us in an exclusive (and hilarious) interview!
We’ve featured Chris in our blog before. He was born in Florida on January 13, 2013 without properly working back legs, and the veterinarian who rescued him got him up and about with a wheelchair. His celebrity skyrocketed—Chris is now a published author and he’s in talks for an animated feature!
I was honored to speak with Chris, who simply radiates charm and wit. In fact, when I asked him what it is that makes him such a popular pig, he said, “Because I’m so stinkin’ cute and funny!” No argument here. Without further ado, here’s Chris on life!
Q. How have your wheelchairs changed since you were a piglet?
A. They’ve gotten bigger. My first wheelchair was very light, and it served the purpose. Then I went through a growth spurt for about a month, and I didn’t fit any wheelchair at all. Finally, my dad (veterinarian Dr. Len Lucero) got one that they could adjust as I grew. And then, when I grew old enough and outgrew that one, they gave me another one. The only adjustment I’ve really made to that one is the kind of wheel I use. I have several different wheel options depending on what I feel like. When I’m inside I like to use big monster wheels, because they look cool. When I’m outside, I like to use smaller wheels because they’re faster.
Q. What’s your favorite thing to do?
A. I like to roll around the yard and play with my best friend Aspen. Aspen is a Border collie dog, and she’s very excitable. She loves to run circles around me, so we race a lot!” (Editor’s Note: Chris says their win-loss record is about 50-50.)
Q. You make a lot of event appearances and do a lot of traveling. How do you travel?
A. I get to sit in the front seat of Dad’s car. I like to look out the window and get it really dirty. Sometimes I make a lot of noise, and Dad gives me Cheerios. We have an understanding. When I get really noisy while he’s driving, he gives me Cheerios. I also like to fly. It doesn’t take long to get where we’re going, and I ride in a pressurized, temperature-controlled space in the same area as everyone’s luggage. Dad lets the pilots know I’m very special, so they maintain a comfortable temperature for me.
Q. Cheerios, huh? What else is part of your diet?
A. The staple to my diet is a pellet made for miniature horses and ponies, and I like it mixed in warm water. The pellet soaks up all the water, and it’s really soft, so I can gulp the whole thing down in no time. I don’t have to waste time chewing!
Q. Tell us about your family.
A. We’ll start with my Mom. Her name is Shawna, and she’s the one that spoils me the most. She loves to give me food all the time, and everybody gets mad at her. My Dad is a funny guy who spends most of his time with me. He’s a veterinarian, and we do a lot of traveling together. I have a brother and sister. My brother Gabe is very nice to me and likes to play with me. I miss my sister Ashley, because she’s in college. My buddy Aspen is a dog, and Duma is our cat.
Q. How has your disability affected your life?
A. I think that my disability has encouraged millions of people and has affected them more so than me. I like to inspire people so they understand that, sometimes, when you’re faced with an obstacle, if you put your mind to it, you can overcome it.
Q. We know you’ve written a book to remind kids with disabilities that they are special and unique. How’s that going?
A. I really like my new book (Chris P. Bacon: My Life So Far,) and I get a lot of comments. Everyone tells me that they love it. I’ve had a lot of people send me their book so I can sign it. I plug my book every time I go on TV. The book is about my life so far, and it takes me up to the time I got back from New York City, where I was a guest on the TODAY show! (Editor’s Note: The book, Chris P. Bacon: My Life So Far, is the first of three books Chris will write.)
Q. Do you ever do anything that irritates your parents?
A. I like to have things my way, and if I don’t get them my way, I make a lot of noise. Sometimes I spill my food so I can eat it off my bed instead of out of the bowl. It’s a lot easier because you can just lie in bed and eat it. You don’t have to get up. I like to put my drool all over the floor wherever I go, so that people know where I am and don’t step on me. I also make sure that any windows within my reach are dirty.
Q. I’m sure they love that drool. How do they show that love, Chris?
A. Oh, they give me snout kisses and rub my belly! I roll over, because it’s one of my favorite things in the world. I really like it when they tickle me with a feather. One of Duma’s toys is a stick with a feather, and when I see it coming, I roll right over. When I’m tickled, my tummy’s Mohawk stands straight up and I laugh. (Editor’s Note: His mohawk is on top of his neck from ears to shoulder blades, and when it’s raised, it usually means piggy’s happy and content.’)
Q. You seem to be one happy pig. What else makes you laugh?
A. Everything makes me laugh! I like to laugh at the silly things Aspen does. I think it’s really funny when she falls down. I laugh at Dad’s silly jokes, but mostly just to humor him. I also laugh when Aspen and Duma get in trouble.
Q. Do you respond to any commands?
A. I understand “good boy” and “sit.” Yeah, that’s a joke. But I do give kisses on command, and I will shake hands for food.
Q. Tell us about your hygiene regimen.
A. Well, I get bathed once every three weeks—whether I need it or not. It happens in one of the showers in the house with warm water and lots of bubbles.
Q. If you could go anywhere in the world, where would it be?
A. I would go to Napa Valley in California so I could eat as many grapes as I wanted to. We pigs love almost all fruit, but I wouldn’t give grapes to Aspen, because grapes aren’t good for dogs.
Q. You know, Miss Piggy is still on the market. Where would you go on a date with her?
A. We’d go to an all-you-can-eat buffet, and after we’d go to a boardwalk along a beach to get some dessert!
Q. What’s been your favorite moment in your life so far?
A. Every day is very exciting, but I would have to say my favorite time has been in California. We stayed at a really nice hotel, and we got a lot of room service. The hotel brought me my very own room service with grapes and cheerios, which they let me eat on the floor!
Q. Chris, what’s your message to everyone who knows and admires you, and for those who have just discovered your awesomeness?
A. Anything is possible if you put your mind to it, and any obstacle can be overcome if you never give up!
Q. What’s next for Chris P. Bacon?
A. I have two more books to write, and I’ll continue to visit people in hospitals and kids in schools, because everyone loves to pet me!
This concludes the Chris P. part of the interview. I spoke briefly to Chris’s dad to see how Chris has affected his life. Dr. Len Lucero is an ambulatory veterinarian who goes from farm to farm to care for animals, and he works long hours every day. In the evenings, he updates Chris’s enormously popular Facebook page and tickles Chris’s belly with a feather. I asked him what Chris has meant to him.
Dr. Lucero: Chris changed my life from the moment I got him. When I first took him home, it was to give him a better chance at life. As time went on and he became more popular, people just crowded around him. I shifted to doing all this for Chris to doing it for everyone else. I now share him, his experiences, and his entire life, putting pictures up on Facebook so people can see him and adore him—without having to clean up any of his messes. I love that everyone sees Chris as heartwarming and uplifting. It’s made me a better person.
Editor’s Note: This interview with Chris was my first with a pig, and I was smitten from the moment Dr. Lucero put him on the phone. The world is truly a better place because Chris P. Bacon is in it, and if Miss Piggy turns down a date with this porcine Prince Charming, I’m ready to fill in. He had me at “all-you-can-eat buffet!”
Here’s Chris P. Bacon in action at a children’s hospital!