Saturday, June 7, 2014

My One-Winged Chicken

Remember that post I wrote, Why You Don't Want to Be a Bird in my House?'s a new one to add to that list. Our new cloister (is that what you call them?) of baby hens was attacked by...something. I never saw the culprit. But of the five chicks, one of them completely disappeared, and another one lost her entire wing. It's just...gone. Nothing left except for a nasty groove where the wing used to be. It's pretty gut-wrenching to look at.

The good news is the chick is presently recovering in our indoor medic center (aka: cardboard box on dining room table), and is doing surprisingly well. I didn't know if she would make it, because she kept falling over on the first day and was taking a lot of naps. But today--on day 4--she's eating like a pig, chirping louder than should be possible, and the wound is almost completely scabbed over.

I'm going to keep her inside for one more day, and then put her back with her siblings. I hope she is able to adjust to life without her wing. It's not just the flying thing, but chickens use their wings for balance. It will be a huge struggle for her to even run forward on the ground without the benefit of flapping her wings, and I don't know how she will be able to roost with the other hens at night beneath the eaves of their chicken coop. When we first discovered her injury, a part of me contemplated putting her out of her misery. But I couldn't. She was still chirping and seemed to want to live. Big or small, I think every creature has the right to choose life, and to fight for that choice.

Oh, we're calling her Maleficent, by the way. You'll get the appropriateness of that name once you've seen the movie.

I had more profound things to write about tonight, but somehow I blabbed about my one-winged chicken instead. Ooh, I still have time to turn this into some meaningful metaphor about life or struggles or something, or impart some universal lesson. Hmmm. Hmmmmmmmmm. *scratches head*

"Don't lose appendages. It sucks."


  1. Wow, that sucks. Poor baby chick! I would be devastated and probably cry. I don't handle emergencies well and I cannot at all stand the sight of animals suffering. Not that I think you can, but you seem to handle emergencies with a grace I will never possess. I'm glad the little thing is doing well. Animals have an uncanny ability to compensate for and overcome disabilities. I hope she's still doing okay.

    1. She is doing SO well Kristyn! I put her out with her siblings yesterday, and they have completely accepted her. In fact, if anything, she's a little more assertive than they are. I was watching her today pushing her way toward the chicken scratch, refusing to back down. She's a fighter. :)

      I can't stand the sight of animals suffering either. I was thinking about what you said, about me handling emergencies with grace, and I think that's because my brain actually "goes somewhere else" during the emergency. It's like all the panic (or even revulsion, depending on the situation) gets temporarily smothered down somewhere, and this cool, detached part of me takes over just long enough to deal with the situation. Once said-situation has passed or is resolved, all of those emotions come to the surface, and I'm like, "Holy crap, the cat just got skinned alive by the street sweeper!"

    2. Me too! The emergency thing I mean. That's exactly what happens to me too. But if I stub a toe or something, it's the end of the world.

    3. Exactly. I still have yet to master "cooly detached" when it comes to calamities such as paper cuts or stubbed toes.

    4. How do I learn that particular awesome ability? Whenever I have emergencies, I just freak out. Like, oh my dog's having a seizure and all I can do is cry. Although, I have to say I've been doing better with that particular emergency. Still, I'm no good at going somewhere else, which kind of sucks!

    5. I think it's a built-in thing, but no worries--you have strengths in areas that I don't. Like you are super-savvy when it comes to trouble-shooting tech-stuff. How do I get more of THAT?


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