Sunday, August 31, 2014

Dogs, Chickens, and the vet

Thursday my sister, her husband, and her dog came over.  My brother-in-law wanted to let the dog out.  I knew the chickens were locked up, so I said sure.  The dog made a bee line for the chickens.  I knew the dog couldn't get the chickens, the dog knew, but the chickens had missed the memo.  They reacted as any bird would, jumping into flight.  However, in their enclosed run, they hit the hardware cloth.  I had three bleeding chickens and a sick heart.

I cleaned off the blood with wet q-tips and put the triple antibiotic cream on their wounds.  Two had cut themselves right above the beak at the base of the comb.  Betsy the barred rock wasn't so lucky.  She had chipped the end off of her beak and was bleeding at the top of her beak.  But she seemed OK.  The next evening, her beak started bleeding again after she pecked at some hardboiled egg I had given them. 

I decided to take her to Creekside Animal hospital.  I don't know enough about chickens to know if it was serious or not.  It was Saturday and they were closed Sunday and Monday (for Labor Day).  I packed Betsy up in a Lowes medium sized moving box with bedding in the bottom.  $80 later, I had a chicken with a fixed beak.  We worked out that she must be worth about $18 a pound.

I don't regret taking her to the vet although I do wish I had asked some of my neighbors who had chickens, because I think at least one of them has fixed something like that before. 

On the way there, my little four-year-old prayed that "Betsy wouldn't die and she wouldn't get eaten."  After that, how could we not pay :)

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