Pigs Gone Wild: Herbfarm Diner Claims She Was Attacked

by Shona Milne on June 12, 2009

I came across this report at the Seattle PI that a woman claims that a pot bellied pig bit her while she was at The Herbfarm Restaurant.

Woodinville pig bite draws lawsuit

Popular Herbfarm restaurant target of suit


(Editor’s Note: An earlier version of this story incorrectly described the woman’s location when she was bitten by the pig. She contends she was not reaching into the pig enclosure, but was bitten standing near the low fence.)




A diner at a gourmet Woodinville restaurant has filed suit against the business, claiming she was attacked there by a potbellied pig.

According to the complaint, the woman and her husband were taking a break between courses at the Herbfarm Restaurant on Jan. 11, 2008, when they wandered to the establishment’s pigpen. Equipped with a restaurant-issued pan of pig food, the couple was hoping to feed the animals.

Night had fallen by then, making it difficult to see the small swine, according to the complaint. The woman was standing near a low fence cupping a handful of pig food, attempting to spot an unseen hog.

The rest of the incident is recounted, somewhat dramatically, by the woman’s attorney.

“Out of the darkness came one of (the) pigs,” the plaintiffs allege. “The pig tried to take the food from (her) hand and in doing so, bit her.”

The woman, her attorneys contend, had not seen the pig until it bit her hand. Her attorney, Steven Robinson, said she suffered lasting injuries to her hand from the bite.

“This was a deep puncture wound right in the joint of her thumb,” Robinson said Thursday. “It became infected, and she’s had complications ever since.”

Speaking Thursday, Herbfarm owner Carrie Van Dyck extended condolences to the woman, but said that restaurant patrons are warned before visiting the pigs.

Van Dyck said diners often feed treats to the restaurant’s pair of potbelly pigs during breaks in the evening meal. No previous visits have resulted in litigation.

“They’re quite cute,” Van Dyck said. “They’re trained. They do tricks. But they’re are pigs, and pigs are interested in food.”

Filed earlier this month in King County Superior Court, the complaint requests that restaurant pay the woman’s medical expenses and other costs, as well as unspecified special damages. The Herbfarm has not yet filed a response to the allegations with the court.

Levi Pulkkinen can be reached at 206-448-8348 or levipulkkinen@seattlepi.com.

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Randy Small 06.15.09 at 4:23 am

This is hilarious! It seems to me that the woman involved made several choices to interact with the pig, even trying to hand-feed the animal in the dark and she’s suing over her own stupidity! Yeah, it’s attractive nuisance but she should have used a little more common sense. This one’s a future Darwin Award contestant to be sure.

Shona Milne 06.15.09 at 2:46 pm

I can’t help but laugh evertime it’s brought up in conversation. Is that wrong??

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