She has quickly acquired a triple barreled name, Lydia Cuddles Buffy. Long story, how we decided on a chicken as the most suitable pet. And, unfortunately, the early days have not run entirely smoothly (due to bullying issues and discovering a wound on one of Buffy’s “friends”….not to mention the sudden appearance of a neighbouring farm cat in search of a make your own KFC).
Boy’s pleasure in stroking his own first pet, however, makes it all worthwhile.
Because of Boy’s cystic fibrosis, we hesitated before agreeing to another pet. However, now that he is a bit older, we are hopeful that the message about washing hands after handling animals has finally rubbed off. The downside is that the chickens are messy (though nowhere near as bad as having to deal with the results of a Creon underdose in a nappy). I have made a point of telling Boy that I will have to do all the mucking out. (Wet straw is a complete no-no for him because of the spores it harbours can cause problems for his lungs). Strangely, this is proving quite a task as Boy is keen to get involved in all aspects of chicken care! Most afternoons he has taken up a position in front of the hen-house watching their antics and keeping an eye out for Mr Fox.
As the hens settle in, we are hoping some form of normality may return. (The poorly hen is now recovering and the flock seem to have accepted her back). Boy’s confidence grows and hopefully at some point we’ll be able to enjoy a few fresh eggs!
Deciding to let Boy have his own pet was a hard call. However, we are hopeful that the benefits outweigh the risks. Boy is thrilled, and his confidence is growing.
As he grows up, I am finding the #magicmoments are fewer. (Or, perhaps, it’s me, needing to work harder at rediscovering the magic in everyday things). The smile on his face when I put Buffy on his lap though, pure magic. I wish I had taken a photo….but I needed both hands free to manage the chicken!