Video Extra: Airport Therapy Pig

Posted at 8:22 AM, Nov 13, 2019
and last updated 2019-11-13 10:22:45-05

Pigs might not fly, but LiLou the therapy pig wants to make air travel less stressful.

The five-year-old Juliana pig and her owner Tatyana Danilova are part of San Francisco airport's 'Wag Brigade' - a program that brings trained therapy animals to the airport, to cheer passengers up and help ease travel anxieties.

Dressed in a pilot's cap and with her toenails painted bright red, LiLou breezes through the metal detector at airport security and trots to the departure gates. She raises a hoof in greeting, poses for selfies and entertains departing passengers with a tune on her toy piano.

When she's not delighting passengers at the airport, LiLou lives with Danilova in her downtown San Francisco apartment, enjoys a diet of organic vegetables and protein pellets, sleeps in her own bed and goes for daily walks around the neighborhood. Danilova says LiLou loves interacting with people.

Eight-year-old Katie Schroeder, from San Ramon, California, squealed in delight as LiLou bashed out a tune on her piano, using her hooves and snout.

"She's so talented!" she said.

All the therapy animals take part in a training program with the San Francisco SPCA and must have a stable temperament, good manners and a friendly personality. Additionally, all the animals, including LiLou, are fully house trained.