Wilbur the Pig’s family had to spend thousands of dollars defending their pet pig. So did the Harris County, Texas HOA, which did everything it could to have Wilbur thrown to the wolves. Wilbur is a Vietnamese pot-bellied pig, an extremely intelligent species which has been bred as housepets. Tens of thousands of pig owners say they make marvelous companions.
But The Thicket at Cypresswood Community Improvement Association thought otherwise. Just the thought that the Alex Sardo family was keeping a non-traditional pet in their home threw the HOA into histrionics. Threats to sue, threats to poison, threats of vandalism, threats to seize the Sardo home and sell it at auction.
Wilbur finally got his day in court, and for once a District Court Judge was not friendly to an HOA. He ruled that the evidence was clear that this breed of pig is definitely considered a household pet. But Judge Mike Engelhart went further. He warned that Homeowners Associations have a responsibility not to infringe too much on homeowners’ use of their land. He said it’s time to set a precedent: that Homeowners Associations cannot micromanage their residents behavior.
There was obvious pissing and moaning on the HOA side of the room. There’s no word on whether the Sardo family will be awarded legal fees. It will be a tragedy if they don’t get back every dime in this stupid dispute. It would also be true justice if a special assessment had to be levied against the whole neighborhood to pay for the wasted legal expenses.
Sadly, this won’t be the end of the story. Beware the “neighborhood nazi.” The Sardo family is going to be made just as miserable as this HOA dares.