gillybirds

What came first- the chickens or the blog?

Who is the Real Chicken?

on October 8, 2012

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Calling someone a “chicken” in English is criticising their cowardice and lack of bravery. Equally insulting to a person’s intelligence is referring to them as a “bird brain”. I have had hens now for 5 months, and have found them to be neither lacking in courage or intelligence.
Since getting the puppy five weeks ago I have been trying to introduce him to the Gillybirds by letting him loose in the garden (under my close supervision) while they are having their quality garden time. When dogs are young there is a window of opportunity to introduce them to new experiences and teach them how to behave appropriately, not just with hens, but with postmen, prams, cars etc. I want him to learn that hens are friends, not food. Think of how farm dogs and free range hens on farms get along.
Up to now he has been very quiet, showing some curiosity, as they have to him. He has even done a spot of dust rolling with them. However, now he is bigger, faster, more playful than ever. You will see from the following sequence of photos that Lucas the pup first hides behind a bush to observe his feathered sisters. As they become more occupied with picking at the greenery he boldly gets closer and closer.

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So getting up close and personal Lucas decided to wave a paw in the hen’s face, she promptly responded with a sharp peck, he took a leap backwards. She then opened her wings, started flapping rapidly and chased him round the garden. Poor little Lucas fled with his wee tail between his legs and sought refuge in – the chicken coop! He had a great time exploring all the smells, drinking from their water container and having a wee dig and a snuffle without further humiliation. I realise now that farm dogs probably learnt to keep a respectful distance from the farm yard hens in similar circumstances!
During all the kerfuffle I did stop taking pictures just in case things went too far and hen or pup was injured. I learnt my lesson, sadly I think that it is best for pup and hens to learn about each other through the safety of the coop wire. He does visit them regularly, I hope they do more than just trade insults. Perhaps he will grow up understanding three languages – canine, human and hen. Now that’s no birdbrain.

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Lucas and Darling deep in discussion.

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One response to “Who is the Real Chicken?

  1. amaryllislog says:

    It’s rather cute but I’m sure the chicken has the upper hand for now, poor Lucas!

    I also question calling something a “dog” like a project is a real dog. Whoever came up with these names really had no idea!

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