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The major problem with last night’s Bachelor: Won’t someone please, think of the piglets?

I feel a lot of feelings when I watch The Bachelor. Admittedly mostly a lot of feelings about Matty J’s abs.

But last night, I felt a lot of feelings for piglets. Uncomfortable feelings for baby pigs, wrapped in colourful ribbons.

So let’s rewind: On the group date, our chosen bachelorettes are whisked away into a medieval-style setup. Four of them are then invited to play a fun game, cleverly named ‘Piglet Catching’, to win time with Matty J. The goal is to catch two piglets from their pen and pop them into a box. (Matty J kindly demonstrates how to do this.) Fun, fun, fun.

Before things kick off, Osher gives a stern lecture: “The most important rule of this challenge is don’t hurt the pigs. Be very kind to them. Lift them up carefully. Don’t drop them. Don’t traumatise them.

So of course, the ladies silenced their competitive streaks. Instead, they courteously trotted up to each piglet, fed them a treat and politely asked if they may, please, please, please, carry them to win Matty J’s affections…

Ha ha ha. Au contraire.

As soon as the game kicked off, there was complete and utter mayhem.

We see piglets scatter in every direction, squealing at the top of their little lungs (and I while I don’t speak oink, I swear I could just about make out ‘WHAT THE FRICK’ and ‘SAVE OUR SOULS’). There are women chasing, leaping, and dropping to their hands and knees. And finally, the piglets are swung up skywards before being plopped into a box.

OH, SUCH FUN.

Look, without wanting to be a wet blanket, you can probably tell I felt terribly uneasy.

And I promise you I wasn’t alone. The world of social media was overwhelmingly unimpressed.

Not only because ‘be an expert in pig catching’ isn’t on the list of skills you look for in a partner in 2017 – but also, chasing seemingly terrified piglets for entertainment really… isn’t… entertaining.

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So I asked the folks at PETA what they thought of the whole shemozzle.

PETA Australia’s associate director of campaigns Ashley Fruno echoed the opinions being aired on Twitter.

“Pinning down piglets to win a date is ridiculous, and hardly romantic,” Ms Fruno said.

She said pigs were “intelligent, curious, sensitive animals”.

“They would be terrified, and not amused, by having yelling, boisterous fully-grown adults chasing, grabbing and falling on top of them,” Ms Fruno said.

LISTEN: Mamamia’s Zara McDonald and Michelle Andrews on Bach Chat. Post continues… 

She then had some advice for the producers behind the reality TV show.

“The next time The Bachelor producers wish to include pigs in an episode, we suggest they visit an animal sanctuary and get to know these gentle creatures on their own terms,” she said.

The Bachelor‘s production company has since strongly defended the stunt.

Warner Bros has released a statement obtained by Mamamia stressing that measures were put in place to protect the piglets.

“Producers ensure any instance involving animals has RSPCA approval and a handler on set. All participants were briefed by a handler on the humane handling of the pigs for this activity.”

We asked where the piglets were located now since their newfound fame… but, alas, they would not say.

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