Wednesday, July 24, 2013
Mrs. Gold & the Kids
Remember these little fluff balls? They're seven weeks old now and feeling frisky.
It's hard to get a picture of all of them together, they like to be on the move.
Sadly, we lost one of the babies last week. When we returned from our week vacation we noticed that she was not doing well at all. This little chick was the last one hatched, a full two days after the others and had been weaker from the start. Mrs. Gold took extra care of her giving her special treats, waiting for her to catch up when they were on a walk and she seemed to be thriving. But when we returned from our time away I noticed that she could not seem to stand up fully. Both of her legs were swollen and hot to the touch and she was walking on her hocks/elbows. She was still eating and drinking well but could not keep up with the others at all. I searched the Internet for answers as to what this illness/injury could be but could find nothing to give me a clue. Mama was still trying to help her and she wasn't getting weaker but it was obvious that she could no longer stand and soon would not be able to get around at all. When I tried to straighten her legs to possibly splint them they were very swollen and painful to her. After watching for improvement for a week we made the decision to euthanize her since I could not find any solution to the problem.
There is no sign of illness or injury in the rest of the babies and all are thriving. We have tried to introduce them to the older flock in small groups but Mrs. Gold is sooo protective that if any of the other girls looks cross-eyed at one of her kids she flies into a rage and a gang fight breaks out! Someone could get hurt. We'll have to keep them separated for now.
When you have animals they come with responsibility and sometimes hard decisions must be made. Even though some may say they're only chickens I don't take these decisions lightly. I cannot allow any animal to suffer just because I'm too afraid to do the right thing but I will try whenever possible to save an animal if I can. Almost all of us have had to part with a beloved dog or cat. Have you ever had to make a hard choice regarding one of your farm animals? How did you handle it?
Until next time,