'Praying Pig' Goes Viral In China

02/26/2015 12:19 pm ET | Updated Feb 26, 2015

In video footage shot Tuesday, a pig facing a date with the slaughterhouse is shown kneeling directly in front of a local Buddhist temple, as if in an act of prayer.

The pig, which weighed over 300 pounds, reportedly remained kneeling on its forelimbs for hours in front of the temple in China’s eastern Zhejiang Province, leaving the area only after monks began chanting scriptures.

Some online commenters have taken a skeptical approach to evaluating the pig's behavior, pointing out that a deficiency of vitamin E can lead to weakness in a pig’s front legs. But the pig's owner told local press that this animal was healthy and that he had never seen anything like Tuesday's events.

Local media report that the pig was one of three that escaped from a nearby enclosure on the morning of Feb. 22 and were recaptured that afternoon and sent to the slaughterhouse. The owner of the kneeling pig reportedly said he hadn't known about the animal's time at the temple when he sent it to be killed and that he regretted it.

For a photo slideshow of the pig at the temple, click here.

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