Saturday, July 21, 2012

The City Chickens Grow

Today is day 5 with the baby chickens.  Lexi was at her biological dad's house this week and just got to meet The Peeps yesterday.  She is just as in love with them as the rest of us. She's wearing her "I'm 12 and I'm pretending not to care" face in this picture, but she really did light up when she first saw them and she's been talking about them ever since.

Here are some things I'm learning about chickens:

  • They grow fast. They already don't fit well in the box they came in.  We were using it to bring them up for "social time" (we want people and dog-friendly chickens) and have had to upgrade to a big rubbermaid box.
  • They are not really all the bright. My dog is a boxer mix with a boxer personality.  Boxers aren't known for their quick wit and she is no exception.  My cat?  Siamese mix.  He's the slightly dumb and very friendly type of Siamese (there are also the clever and sneaky/mean ones like the pair from Lady and the Tramp.) So it's not like we're used to terribly bright pets around here.  But sleeping in your own poop?  Yuck.
  • It doesn't take long for the pecking order to start appearing.  Miss Piggy is, appropriately, taking charge.  She gets the first drink of fresh water and the first go at the food.  She sleeps where she likes and the others must arrange themselves around her. Shirley is our smallest.  She's been pasting up a bit (I'm going to spare you the details and just say if you really must know what that is. . . click here) and is the smallest chick. We've been keeping a close eye on her and keeping her very clean, so she still seems healthy enough.  She's just the little chick so she is the one who gets picked on a little.  Part of me wants to scoop her up and give her her own space, but I know that she would then be lonely and Cheepers (the other Australorp and the second smallest) would probably be picked on.  Chickens are just like that.
  • Holy omelette, Batman! These chicks are ridiculously cute.  I may have mentioned that before.
  • People get REALLY into their chickens.  There are entire online communities for people who love their chickens.  To be fair. . . I joined this one. You know. . . in case I need to talk to other chicken folk and none of my neighbors are home. You never know when you might have an urgent chicken question.
  • Chicks love my mother in law.  I mean, I can't blame them.  That said, it was wild to watch as I set a peeping like crazy, flailing chick in her hands and the chick settled right down and was calm.  I can get them to calm down, but she really has the magic touch.
  • They learn your voice quickly.  The chicks will respond to any of us when we go down to check on them, but they are more immediately responsive and excited when it's me.  Kinda makes me feel nice. I'm their mama.

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