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Levi, the pot-bellied pig, living high on the hog, says local business owner Andrew Glinski

By DIANNE RUSSELL

Readers may remember Levi, the wayward pot-bellied pig, whose claim to fame is that he got loose in South Laguna in September of 2016 and was recovered by Police Officer Mike Jeffries, but not without a struggle. Levi was hightailing it down Pedro Street after he disappeared from a local park. Andrew Glinski, his owner, had been desperately searching for him.

Elusive Levi wriggled out of a dog rope twice before Officer Jeffries finally corralled him.

As quoted in a news article, Officer Jeffries said, “Once I got him, I tried to set him on the floor in the prisoner’s seat, but the minute he felt himself going into the patrol car, the pig braced his legs to stay out. He was pretty smart.”

It’s not a surprise that Levi used clever methods to elude capture – pigs are the fourth smartest animal group on the planet, following only humans, apes and chimps, whales, and dolphins.

Levi the baby

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Photo by Andrew Glinski

Levi during his piglet days

According to the OC Register, when Glinski picked Levi up at the Laguna Beach Animal Shelter, he said, “Words can’t describe how happy I am. I don’t think he [Officer Jeffries] really knows how much it meant to me. For me, it’s like he saved my kid.”

That was back in the days when Glinski brought his then eight-month-old, 80-pound pig to work with him (along with his Collie Winter). Levi is registered as an exotic pet per the City of Laguna Beach. Glinski says, “Everyone in town knew him.”

However, Levi currently tips the scales at 400 lbs, and Glinski admits, “He’s just too big to fit in my truck now.”

Levi the adult

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Photo by Andrew Glinski

Levi now weighs in at 400 lbs

Granted, Glinski loves animals, but how did he end up with a pig? “I had a Slingshot three-wheel car that I rented out, and this one guy kept renting it. He had turtles. One day he just put a baby pig in my hands, and Levi never left my side for three years.”

Lest you think Levi now has a “boaring” life, don’t feel sorry for him.

Although he can’t come into work with his owner every day like he used to when he was a mere piglet, Levi lives with Glinski on a 10-acre ranch on the border of Ortega Hwy and Lake Elsinore. Levi has lots of company – horses, alpacas, donkeys, ponies, birds, and two turtles named Robin and Howard. In addition to Winter, Glinski now has Coco, a rescue dog from Bali.

Levi the with Winter

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Photo by Andrew Glinski

Levi and Winter in Andrew’s truck

Glinski says, “I don’t have a wife or kids, and I love animals, so I have a lot of them.”

Although you could call what he has a mini-sanctuary, Glinski spent a year at a real animal sanctuary in Colorado. In 2018, he packed up, and with Winter in his truck, hit the road, ending up at the sanctuary. “They said I could live there if I worked three hours a day, but I became the main guy. In the year I was there, we rescued about 250 animals, going from 182 to nearly 500.” 

After that year, he decided to come back. “It was really hard work.”

Before opening up Relic Tint in February of 2019, Glinski ran a mobile detailing business. The shop housing Relic Tint had been vacant for a few years and needed some fixing up. “I taught myself to drywall,” he says.

Levi the and co owners

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Photo by Mary Hurlbut

Andrew Glinski (on left) and Lucas Harral, co-owners of Relic Tint

Glinski says he doesn’t mind the 31-mile trip into work – and back. “It’s my quiet time. I work a lot, and what could be better? I live in a 100-year-old cabin in the country, and right now I’m looking at the ocean.”

When Glinski does go home, he has a menagerie of animals to greet him, including one well-known pig who made headlines in 2016 hoofing it up Pedro Street toward Brooks Street until, disgruntled, he was taken into custody. 

Although Levi no longer visits Relic Tint, drop in anyway. It is located at 1009 S Coast Hwy.