If spending £5,000 on a Will-and-Kate-themed chihuahua wedding floats your boat, who are we to sneer?
‘It’s not normal, is it – a 25st pig traipsing around your house?” says fire and rescue crew manager Dave, his face etched with defeat. Ever since Dave’s wife Janey watched Babe, the film about an orphaned piglet adopted by a sheepdog, she’s wanted a pet pig that she could cuddle on the sofa and dress up in tutus. Seven years ago, she ordered a micro piglet online – the porcine answer to the Andrex puppy – which slowly ballooned into what it had been all along: a Vietnamese pot-bellied pig. Undeterred, a year later she bought another supposedly tiny piglet from a farmer; six months on, it too was the size of a hippo. Now Janey and Dave’s downtime is mostly spent applying wet wipes to their pigs’ nether regions in the family bathroom and feeding them peanut butter with a spoon.
Pets make imbeciles of us all – this much I know from experience. As the stupidly besotted owner of a spaniel, I can frequently be found in the park at dusk, groping in the undergrowth for turds, guided only by the terrible stench and the light of my mobile phone. But if the gruesomely fascinating Secret World of Posh Pets (4 August, 8pm, ITV) is anything to go by, the idiocy is off the chart when you have money to burn.