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Jason Wheeldon puckers up at Kiss the Pig fundraiser

Fundraiser gathered over $4,400 for Leslie Long Rescue

East Kootenay real-estate agent Jason Wheeldon was lucky enough to kiss the sweetest girl in Cranbrook on May 11.

He puckered up and planted a sloppy wet smooch on Barbara the pig at a local fundraiser for Leslie Long Rescue.

A crowd gathered outside Top Crop Garden, Home and Pet to watch him peck her snout. He slathered barbeque sauce on his lips and placed an apple slice in his mouth to entice her, and then climbed in to her pen and puckered up.

“She was a little shy, but I did try to wine and dine her earlier. Very nice pig. Very friendly,” he said.

“I actually thought she would be a little messier,” he added.

Barbara was taken in by Leslie Long’s animal rescue service last year and adopted by Kathy Proudfoot. Her affectionate and sassy disposition quickly captured hearts, and it wasn’t long before Proudfoot had set up a Facebook account so the public could watch her progress as she adjusted to her new life.

Wheeldon was one of many candidates who volunteered to smooch Barbara, the others being East Kootenay MLA Tom Shypitka, owner of Bridge Interiors Ken Bridge, 107.5 Today FM sales representative Derek Kortschaga, owner of Top Crop Shannon Fisher, and Leslie Long.

The public stepped up to nominate their favourite candidate through a donation of at least two dollars, and the person who raised the most was the one who got to plant the kiss.

Wheeldon raised $2,166 with help from his daughter, who got a hold of his phone and reached out to all his contacts to ask them to contribute. His friends were happy to donate to the cause and she rounded up approximately $1,550. Bridge added on another $500 just to lower the stakes.

The runner-ups were Bridge with $1,328 and Shypitka with $468.

In total, the fundraiser gathered over $4,400 for Leslie Long.

“I’m very excited. That’s going to help a lot of animals,” Long remarked. “We’ve had some big medical cases lately. I appreciate the donations.”

Some of the money will go towards helping a dog named Tiny, a maltese shih tzu mix who was rescued recently. Long said Tiny is in desperate need of medical attention, having a collapsed trachea and dental problems. Once she gets the care and rest she needs, she’ll be put up for adoption.

READ MORE:Leslie Long Rescue volunteers working hard to bring animals off the streets

Barbara the pig finds new home on Gold Creek acreage

About the Author: Gillian Francis

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