Vietnamese potbellied pigs, 1980s-'90s
During the Reagan and Clinton administrations, it seemed that everybody knew somebody who kept a Vietnamese potbellied pig as a pet. Explained a breeder to the Philadelphia Daily News in a trend piece from the beginning of the potbellied pig boom, 1989: “It's really the first real pet to come around since the dog, cat and bird. Yuppies like 'em. If you've got an alligator on your shirt and a BMW in your driveway, the next thing you need is a Vietnamese potbellied pig.”
As it turns out, a fair number of these somebodies were oblivious to the fact that even “miniature” pigs can grow into rather large adults. Exhibit A: These photos show the same Vietnamese potbellied pig, a hefty fella named Otis at the Central Park Zoo. In the photo at right he is a 3-month-old cutie in 2004. At left he's grown up a bit after only three years.