And Then There Were 4, or Trouble in the Hen House, Part II

The Phone Call

On Saturday, while we were out, we thought the worst happened. We got a frantic phone call saying that a big black dog was running around the backyard, and all the chickens were gone.

We drove home in silence – Hubbs’s anniversary gift to me, our little gals that we lovingly raised since they were one day old, and they had just started laying. And now the poor things were gone. Just like that, with no defense against a dog on a rampage.

Searching

We got home and took stock of the situation. The dog was gone, apparently back in the neighbor’s yard where it had dug through the fence, and it looked like there had been a chicken massacre. Feathers were EVERYWHERE. Grey speckled ones here, white fluffy ones there, red and brown feathers scattered wherever we looked.

We walked around to try and account for all the girls. Della had already been brought into the house. She was alive, but looked pretty mangled. There was Wilson’s body, red feathers easy to see lying in the the back weeds.

Hmmm, this was going to be a tough job.

We kept searching, and then, shivering under the wheelbarrow, we saw Roxy! She was spooked, and patches of feathers were missing, but she looked ok. Back into the coop she went.

Ok, at least we have one that’s gonna make it.

We kept on, and incredibly, we found Picker (I know, we should have given her a better name) hiding behind a flower pot – broken leg, chewed up back, but alive!  So Jacks was left. No sign of her in the yard, or in any of the neighbors’ yards. We walked around to the front, to ask the neighbors if we could search their yards for a lost chicken, and there, without a scratch on her, was Jacksie. (We always knew she was the clever one!). In all the chaos, she had flown over our front gate and was waiting for us near the tulips. Woohoo!!

We instantly felt like we understood the parable of the lost sheep – the others were all accounted for, but all we wanted was to find the lost sheep er… chicken. (And its just a silly chicken! How much more joy is there when the God finds His child and brings him home!)

Recovery

As bad as Della and Picker (now renamed Red) looked when we brought them in, I think they’re going to be ok. They’re in a large bin in the warm house, and are being pampered with little cups of applesauce and water brought right up to their tired beaks. Red was so grateful for the treatment that she laid us an egg, right there under her broken leg.

So our little flock remains. Four strong. Ok you four, no crowing and absolutely no more playing with the neighbor dogs, you hear me? We’re not losing any more of you!

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5 responses to “And Then There Were 4, or Trouble in the Hen House, Part II

  1. So, what DO you do for a broken chicken leg?

    I prayed for you this AM, and will continue as I think of you and the pregnancy. I highly doubt, BTW, that you’ll be back “to cooking, canning, flower arranging, photographing, and all the things I enjoy so much (your words),” after the baby, but a girl can dream.

    Have a good day.

    Cathy

    PS I forget with how many chickens you started.

    • haha, thanks for the encouragement. My plan is to do as much canning and flower arranging as I can before the baby is here to tide me over until the day (year?) when I can get back to it!

      I read the chicken’s legs will heal up ok on their own – they may have a limp afterward, but we won’t hold that against them (c: We started with 6, and now are down to 4, which is actually the number we were intending at the beginning. We got 6 expecting that a few may not make it.

  2. Bad dog! Bad, bad dog!

  3. I’m so sorry sweetie. I just read about the bad dog, Toby and I were thinking that it must have been just after we left. We are praying for you both and miss you lots.

  4. never a dull moment…glad the four survived!

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