Alleged pig abuse in Oklahoma panhandle

NewsChannel 10

Goodwell, Oklahoma - Two major pork producers with facilities in the Oklahoma panhandle are under fire for animal abuse.

An undercover investigation by the Humane Society of the United States is revealing a disturbing scene at the pig breeding facilities of Seaboard Foods and Prestage Farms in Goodwell, Oklahoma.

Thousands of pigs are lined up like parked cars inside small metal cages, barely able to move... pigs with injuries and illnesses, going without medical attention... crates overflowing with urine and feces... and piglets screaming in agony, as their genitals and tails are cut off without painkillers.

Paul Shapiro with the Humane Society says, "They're isolated from one another. They can hardly move and many of them go mad from the severe deprivation. They bite the bars of their cages. Some of them bite the bars so incessantly, their mouths bleed onto the concrete before them. We saw pigs with pressure sores from laying in the same position for so long."

This is what the Humane Society of the United States found during their undercover investigation at Seaboard Foods and Prestage Farms in Goodwell, Oklahoma.

Shapiro explains, "What it shows is that cruelty to animals in the pork industry is not the problem of one or two companies, it's a problem that is widespread throughout the entire industry."

And the organization wants these cruel practices to stop now.

Shapiro says "Seaboard and Prestage's competitors, like Smithfield and Cargill have already taken steps to start moving away from these tiny cages used on their breeding facilities. However, Seaboard and Prestage have made no announcements on the progress of this issue."

In fact, we contacted both companies for their responses to these accusations.

Prestage Farms did not return our call, but Seaboard Foods disputes the allegations and says they are following proper industry protocols.

The Humane Society is filing a legal complaint with two federal agencies and calling for the companies to adopt group housing which gives the pigs more space.