Being dumped in the wrong place was to prove fortuitous, for it was at exactly the right time for two sweet ISA Brown hens. Found by wildlife rescuers next to the box that had ferried them there, Henifer Lopez and Lindsay Lohen’s feathery future got a whole lot brighter.
Which is something, dare we say, as rare as hen’s teeth indeed! As egg-laying birds, the lot of ISA Browns rarely ends well. Few live beyond their 18 months of pitiful existence, compared to the long lives – up to ten years – of their wild cousins. And those who somehow miraculously beat the odds often succumb to a kaleidoscope of health issues imposed upon them because of their unnatural, human-induced, almost-daily egg-laying.
Calcium-depleted bodies, compromised reproductive systems and respiratory issues are just some of the maladies these birds and their loving carers face. Yet face them those carers do, giving these gentle, intelligent and gloriously inquisitive animals the best of lives possible.
One of the first measures carers of ISA Brown hens often take to ease over-burdened bodies is a Suprelorin injection to suppress the genetically imposed 25-hourly urge to produce an egg. This gives the birds a chance for their tiny bodies to take a bit of a breather and recover.
And it would seem that modern day egg-production has not only changed chickens, but so too their place in the world. No longer looming large in the forests of Asia where their will was their own, chickens have become caged in more ways than one. Subservient to the wants and needs of humans, and compartmentalised by unjust animal “protection” laws, not only have these gentle animals lost much, but so too have we humans.
For we have lost the connection with a wondrous little being who can inspire us in so many thoughtful ways. One only has to watch them diligently scratch about in the soil, or dart across the yard in wild pursuit of happiness or a flying bug, to understand that the exact place in the world for these feathered wonders is one’s heart.
When kindness counted her tally for the day last Saturday, no doubt she would have included the benevolent act that saved the life of the wee lamb we have named Adelaide.
Feeling the potency of a predator attack was the soft, moist tongue of the newborn lamb we have named Cincinnati.
Easily mistaken for a deer is our sweet friend whom we have named Happy Days. Her name, we whispered to her as a prophecy of the good things to come.
Finding Captain Nemo and his Pearl, and discovering an ocean of kindness.
Some days we wonder how we humans have arrived at where we are in our chequered relationship with animals. And then some days we realise that we can lament the past, accepting that we had no hand in that; our only hand lies in shaping the present.
The heart-warming story of a grieving mother who found a reason for living in her adopted son.
It was an image that will never leave our hearts. The one of the mother standing over her newborn child.
“Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.”
Little did we know that Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds’ short stay with us was to be anything but. An aged dairy cow at the end of her useful life, and having prolapsed after her last calving, a lifeline had been thrown to dear Lucy.