A little known secret about my family. Or, depending on how well you know us, the all-consuming and defining characteristic of my family. We have chickens.
Depending on the time of year we may have a lot of chickens, or barely any chickens. Right now, we have a middling amount of chickens, around 30.
This in and of itself isn’t all that fascinating. However, I took this picture a few weeks ago.
Cobweb is the name of the chicken in the photo. She’s a Silver Dorking, an ancient breed with 5 toes, and won a blue ribbon at the fair last year. This is what my mother told me when I excitedly informed her I was going to write all about this chicken in particular.
Kiska is the dog. She’s a Norwegian Elkhound and has 4 toes. She has been to a fair only once. She was head-butted by a goat at some point in the morning and remained extremely confused for the whole day. She didn’t win a ribbon. It pays to point out this is a dog who will peacfully take a photo with a chicken and get headbutted by a goat and do absolutely nothing about it.
She’s a good dog.
I’m assuming Cobweb is a good chicken.
I have little to do with the chickens other than occasionally gather eggs. There was one memorable night where I had to frantically open the coops at 10:30pm, because I completely forgot to do it at dusk, and manhandle disgruntled birds into a few other coops. It was during this time I discovered a coop full of chickens is really warm at night, and they get super ticked if you haul them out into the chillier night air.
We live in the country. And our chickens roost in coops that are closed and locked every night. We have two or three of them outside in various locations and half of our garage is a big coop. When I ran outside to lock the chickens in, I found out that all the coops had been shut, for whatever reason, except one of the smaller ones. So, there were something like 30 chickens attempting to fit into a box the size of a small dog kennel.
They were unsuccessful.
I opened the top of the coop and carried irritated chicken after irritated chicken into new coops until I could shut the doors on all of them safely. They weren’t happy. I wasn’t happy. Nobody had fun.
Except, possibly, the dog.
Since then I’ve collected eggs a few times, but never had to do anything much more complicated. I don’t know if there’s a reason for that, or if it’s just how it’s worked out. But, for right now, I’m ok with it.
Though, going home and hanging out with a pretty chill dog and some neat looking chickens is always a good time.