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Dec 16, 2008

Chicken Dog

This is Buddy, a self-appointed chicken protector. Our Bantams free-roam all day; they even went out of their warm chicken house today with temps at 15 degrees. They went back in after about 15 minutes of exercise. Anyway, about Buddy:

When we first brought home two hens, a rooster, and seven little yellow chicks, we put them in a make-shift chicken coop with only three-foot chicken wire around it to keep them in. Someone had told me Bantams didn't fly so why not a three foot fence.

The rooster flew over the fence and lived in the woods, roosting at night across the gravel road in a big oak tree. But he always waited around in the evening to see that the hens and chicks were tucked away in their coop before he strolled off, occasionally looking back longingly, as if he would prefer to stay with them but was afraid he wouldn't get out again.

Anyway, back to Buddy: Shortly after we got the chickens, one of the little yellow chicks escaped under the fence and ran. Buddy, fascinated by the chickens from Day One, ran after the chick and caught it in his mouth, breaking its neck. We explained to Buddy that he was to protect the chickens but was never to touch one. He listened carefully, sadly looking at the dead chick, his ears drooping.

We buried the chick. Life went on. But Buddy has never touched another chicken yet he all but sleeps with them. If they do their upset cackle anywhere in the yard, he's there, ready to take on whatever is bothering them. We are completely at ease as long as Buddy is outside when the chickens are out.
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Thank you for your comment. Susan.