Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Chickens in the Garden ... and a Sad Day

The chickens have been having a hey-day in the garden!  I began this post several days ago, and never got back to finishing it.  Today... I had to finish this post.


The garden was a happy spot for the chickens as they pecked and ate every bug in sight.


Since moving over here, the chickens have been free ranging, and their coop is right next to the garden.


They have found several places in the garden to scratch, dig, and take dust baths.


My sweet rooster looking for a juicy bug...


My dear sweet rooster having such a fun time in the garden.

My heart is broken today because I came home to find Annie, our dog, looking very, very guilty, and no sign of our rooster.  I followed Annie behind the house to the very ugly site of this precious rooster who had been killed by Annie.



I hadn't named "him" yet, because we were thinking "he" was a rooster but weren't sure, until yesterday. Yesterday, we heard him crow for the first time, and it was a funny squeaky little crow, but a crow nonetheless.


He was such a pretty poser for my pictures, and I had no idea these would be the last pictures I would have of him.


His bright happy eyes and face... I never wanted a mean rooster, and I was really hoping that "he" would be a rooster, but until we heard him crow, we weren't for sure.  So I was so overjoyed that this rooster was friendly, sweet, and even liked getting his picture taken!

I am glad that I have these pictures of my dear sweet rooster.  I was contemplating a name for him, and had not decided on one.  I think I would have called him Rusty, since his beautiful feathers were a soft rusty brown color.  But, alas... Rusty didn't win the scuffle with Annie.




The rest of the chickens seemed quite upset after this took place, and it took me a while to calm them down, but after feeding them, and talking to them, they went back outside, and I made Annie stay inside our little porch area.

My son buried little Rusty, and we spanked Annie for doing this.  I am not sure what you can do to change the nature of a dog who has killed a chicken.  We love our dear Annie so much, and the only thing that I can think of to do now is to build a run for the chickens, and keep them inside the run unless I am out there with them, or keeping Annie inside.  The sadness in my heart from losing Rusty is pretty heavy right now, as well as not knowing how to teach Annie to never do this again.

If anyone has any suggestions for me, I would appreciate it.

On a brighter note... I wanted to thank everyone for praying concerning the fires in our area.  We had a lovely rain on Sunday that brought in cooler weather, and the smoke has lifted, which has been a wonderful, wonderful thing!  We have been having weather in the 60s and 70s, with days full of sunshine and rain showers, which is an oasis to us here in the northwest after a hot dusty summer!  It is a joy to be able to see our beloved mountains again, instead of the smoky overhang that we have had for the past month or so.  With the onset of the beautiful cooler weather, we know that fall is fast approaching, and I look forward - as I always do - to every change of season!  I enjoy each one fully and delight in its joys, but then as the next season approaches, it is with great joy and anticipation of the change of the weather for that season.

So while it is always a bit sad to see one season pass, there is always the joy of the next season to look forward to.  And while today has been a sad one for me... I have tomorrow to look forward to, because tomorrow is a new day, and faith, hope and peace are the best companions.  :)

24 comments:

  1. Hello, I am so sorry about your rooster as I always love the sound of them crowing in the mornings! I will just say that it is always sad to lose our livestock.
    Hope you can find a new one soon. Hope is always fresh and new every morning!
    Hugs, Roxy

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    1. Oh Roxy, it was such a sad and terrible thing indeed. I think we may have another rooster in our flock. "He" hasn't crowed yet, or acted like a rooster, but "he" certainly looks like one. So we shall see. Meanwhile, until I get a run built, Annie is not allowed outside when the chickens are roaming. We disciplined her, and she knows it is wrong, but I know that in a weak moment, she is likely to do it again. So, we are in the process of getting a run built. Appreciate your visit, and kind words, and indeed - what we would do without hope! :)

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  2. Oh no, I am so sorry to hear about Rusty. All your chickens and rooster seemed to be very happy in their new garden too. It is hard to predict how one animal will react to a different species and it's just terribly sad that Annie reacted the way she did. I hope you will find a solution that will be the best for both your chickens and Annie. Sending you hugs.

    ❤️Ana

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    1. Yes, our chickens are really enjoying free ranging, but it may not be for their own good, so we have decided to build them a run. I don't know if a dog can be "untaught" to do these things, and I can't take the chance that she won't do it again. So, I think a run is our answer. Appreciate your kind words, they soothed in a difficult moment! May the Lord bless your day :)

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  3. No words to ease the pain you are feeling. I'm so very sorry, and from experience, I know that prayer is the key to solutions and answers to life's dilemmas. A multitude of council works well, too.

    *hugs*. I'm so very sorry for your loss.
    Kelley~
    Letters Unfolded

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    1. Thank you Kelley for your kind words, they mean so much! Indeed without the Lord to turn to in difficult moments, even such as this, I would be lost. I appreciate that HE cares enough about every little detail in our lives. Appreciate your comment so much... and praying the Lord blesses your day in a special way! :)

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  4. Firstly, your photos are just beautiful and I love your birds. I am so sorry for your loss, my heart goes out to you.

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    1. Thank you Linda, your words touch my heart, and are so appreciated! I appreciate your visit, and pray the Lord blesses your day today in a special way :)

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  5. Oh, I am dreadfully sorry to hear your sad, sad news...losing a sweet chicken is really awful, and oh, it is something we've had to deal with on a regular basis out here...it is so wild where we live! Our one rooster also was taken out...probably by some wild creature, not our dogs... We were hoping he would be a bit friendlier than our other rooster, Mr Darcy... He is a meany and often attacks us, particularly my dad - hee! Aww, it must be even more heartbreaking now to face what to do with precious Annie... Yes, you will probably have to fence the little chickens up as once a dog has a taste for chickens...oh dear! My dogs chase our chickens, but they're just little jack russells and the chickens don't bother with them much...
    Rusty was a gorgeous rooster, and I know your heart must be sore right now...thinking of you lots!
    Sending hugs and much love...
    Kelly-Anne

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    1. Dear Kelly-Anne, appreciate your sweet visit and kind words so very much! I have been worried about having a mean rooster, as we have friends who get attacked by their rooster quite often, and I know I couldn't have that here. Mr. Rusty was so sweet, and let me even pet him, and take his picture, so it is so hard to believe he is gone. However, we do have one other possibility of a rooster in the flock. "He" hasn't started crowing yet, but certainly looks like a rooster, and again, "he" is very sweet as well. We will be working on getting a run built for the hens as soon as possible, and keeping Annie inside when they are out roaming for the time being. It does seem that once a dog gets a taste for chicken, it is hard to change that behavior. Appreciate, as always, your kind words, and I am so sorry to hear that your rooster went missing as well... it is so hard to bear the loss of the little animals in your care! Hoping that you too can find a nice sweet rooster for your flock! It is very wild where we live as well, and so a run really is our answer, I believe. Have a beautiful and blessed day my friend :)

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  6. I am so sad and sorry to read about Rusty and Annie. He really was a beautiful rooster, such gorgeous coloring and apparently a gentle temperament, as well. My cats used to hunt the wild baby bunnies in our yard. We tried to keep the cats inside as much as possible, but they wanted out and hunting was in their nature. We had a few sad days ourselves. I am so sorry and hope that maybe a pen will help.

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    1. Yes, I was worried that our cat was going to terrorize the chickens too, and he does watch them and occasionally will chase one, but he has never killed one. It is so hard to protect the chickens and yet let them roam around, which makes them the happiest. However, we have decided that building a run is best for them, especially since we do have a lot of natural predators around here. We used to have rabbits in our yard where we lived before, but the coyotes got them, we believe. Nature is pretty harsh, and sometimes hard to understand, but it is the cycle of life.

      Again, thank you for your kind words, and comment, it is always appreciated! Praying you have a blessed and beautiful day :)

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  7. I am so sorry to hear about your sweet rooster. It's difficult to lose an animal...no matter what the reason. I'm afraid Annie might repeat the behavior now that she has a taste for the meat. One of our dogs hunts rabbits in our yard....something she will not stop....even after discipline measures. Building a run might be the safest idea for the chickens.
    Debbie
    xo

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    1. It is always difficult to experience this, and I was on edge since we moved here, with the chickens free ranging. We have made a decision to build a run, and hope to get it built soon. Indeed, once dogs have a taste for chicken, it is hard to change that. Thank you for your kind words of encouragement, it is so appreciated, and I pray the Lord blesses your day today in a sweet way!

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  8. Oh dear...You made me cry...I feel sad for you, the roster and even Annie.. Such a delima now with Annie, for once they have a taste of killing its hard to stop them.
    Maybe the run would be a good idea for the safety of your chickens?
    I feel bad for little Annie.:(
    Your roster and chickens are very nice looking.
    A handsome roster in deed.

    Praise the Lord for your rain and the clearing of the smoke. It must be awful breathing that in for such a long time?

    May your days ahead be fresh and new in the joy of the Lord, dear friend.

    Bless you~~ Debbie

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    1. It was the hardest thing to see my little rooster dead, I'll not lie. I felt sick and queasy about it. And then we had to discipline Annie, which was hard as well. However, we have decided to build a run, which will be best overall for the chickens. I know they love to run around the yard, but it is not best for their safety, because we have lots of other predators too, not just sweet Annie! I honestly think the rooster may have squared off with Annie, and she thought she was doing her job, as she has not bothered the hens. But at any rate, a run will be built soon, for their safety, and my peace of mind!

      Yes, I'm so very thankful that we can see the blue blue skies and mountains again. What a blessing that has been to us after the long month of smoke filled air! The firefighters are making great advances on the fires, for which we are very thankful!

      Appreciate your visit, your kind precious words as always, and pray that your day is blessed in a special way with the presence of the Lord!

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  9. I understand your heart break. Unless you want to experience this again a run - use sturdy wire- is the solution. Dogs may be obedient most of the time but for whatever reason they do come back to kill again. A sad reminder that we live on earth and not heaven. Sending you a hug.

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    1. Yes, a run indeed has become the solution to the dilemma. Thanks for reminding me to use sturdy wire. We have chicken wire, but I am wondering if we may need to use a heavier duty wire than that. Indeed, nature is quite harsh, and sometimes hard to understand, but we can't change it, just work with it, and prepare for it. We live in a wild area and have lots of other natural predators as well, so a run really will be best for my peace of mind, and their safety! Thank you for the hug, so appreciated :) Praying the Lord blesses your day today!

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  10. Oh, dear friend! I am SO terribly sorry to hear this. I know your heart is breaking over this. May the dear Lord bless and comfort you and hold you extra close as you grieve. I know He will give you the needed wisdom in knowing how to help Annie. I am so thankful the dear Lord sent rain and is clearing the smoke away. Sending you much love and many hugs!

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    1. Yes, it has been a difficult thing to experience, but we have decided to build a run, and I know in the long run, that will be better for the chickens. Annie is a sweet dog, but nature made her the way she is, and i must take precautions to keep her from doing it again. Yes, we are so grateful for the clear, beautiful sunny skies... what a blessing and a joy it is! Appreciate the hugs... praying the Lord blesses your day, and keeps you safe on your journey, and pours out many blessings through you! Much love across the miles! :)

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  11. Awww... I am so sorry about your little rooster :( How sad, my friend. You are wise to take precautions and I have an idea the dog run will be the perfect solution for now.

    Thinking of you, precious friend. Hugs!

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    1. Yes, I think the chicken run is a necessity now, not just a want. We will hopefully be getting one built by the end of the week. For now, Annie is having to stay inside, a lot! Appreciate your visit very much Dear Stephanie, and hope your weekend was wonderful!

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  12. Oh- I am so sorry about your young rooster. That is always sad to lose one of our animals/pets. The sad thing is that I have always heard that once a dog kills a chicken you cannot "untrain them". I don't know if that is true, or not, but it is hard to deal with it and you will always worry now.

    Otherwise, those are gorgeous pictures and the sky is certainly beautiful there. Glad you got some rain finally, too. xo Diana

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    1. Hey there, glad to see you back for a visit... I know that you have had a very busy summer. It is hard to untrain a dog from killing chickens, and so necessary now for a chicken run to keep them safe. Sadly! We are having remarkable weather with plenty of rain, and cool temps, so thankful for that!

      Hope that you had a nice and relaxing weekend, and appreciate your visit :)

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