Precious Hens

by Cherry Stoltz
(Pretoria, South Africa)

My Annabelle and Charlotte each laid 2 eggs a day but there was so much more to them than that! When they saw me coming, they jumped into my lap, snuggled their heads into my neck and made soft little hen sounds of contentment.

Once, they managed to get out of their portable coop and disappeared. I was frantic and had just had bilateral eye surgery so couldn't see much at all. A man walked past and asked if I knew of anyone who had poultry, as there were 2 hens in the garden a few properties away.

"Oh, Thank you! I do! But I can't see. Could you take me to them?"

"Yeeees, but how do you plan on catching them?" he asked...

"That won't be a problem!" I replied.

He led me to his garden and stood guard, expecting my hens to rush around in a panic. I squatted down and called out their names. Both came running into my arms and I took them home.

The hens and I were a talking point around the village for some time later - as I live in Africa! That was in 1999.

I still miss my girls so much!

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RIP Lovely Ladies
by: Cath

That is such a lovely story, Cherry. It's amazing what a part our hens play in our lives, that you can have such strong and happy memories so many years after they have gone.

A real testament to your care. Thank you for sharing.

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RIP Louise

by Dale Kettering
(Buena Vista, Co)

Last night, when I went to close the hen house door, there she was. Lying next to the hen house, dead.

She was fine in the morning. No signs of illness. I lost her sister, “Thelma” a year ago to eggs going where they are not supposed to go.

Louise was a Silver Laced Wyandotte. She would be 3 yrs old in March. She was a little bit bossy with her sisters, but was always curious about what I was up to. Whenever we would eat dinner on our patio, she would come running to wait for a treat to drop.

She lived a good chicken life, and one of her favorite things was to peck at cabbage heads hanging from a rope.

I will miss her, but now she is in chicken heaven with her sister Thelma.

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I’m sorry for your loss
by: Dawn

I just had a hen die suddenly too. Sometimes there is nothing that you can do. RIP Helen.

To Louise
by: Cath

Thank you for your sad story about Louise, Dale. Wynadottes are such lovely hens - beautiful to look at and, as you say, a bit on the bossy side!

Sometimes chickens just die for no apparent reason. It's heartbreaking and I feel for you.

As you say, though, she lived a good life and was happy and healthy. That's a lot more than some chickens can claim.

Sending hugs to you in your loss.

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Jenny

by Aimee
(Ben lomond, Ca)

Jenny was a young, 8 month old, Opal legbar hen. I treated myself and paid a lot of money for her as a young chick...she was just so beautiful.

And a stubborn little streak about her she had! She took over the other 2 hens and the young rooster, Hank...bossed them all around! Brought home 2 baby chicks and it was well over a month before she accepted them.

Jenny, was always sweet with us. Followed me around the yard everywhere I went.

She was fine one Sunday morning...left her in the coop/run with the others...came home a few hours later and she had passed away.

No attack, no illness, nothing obvious what caused her death. All I knew was that my sweet girl was gone and I somehow completely failed her.

It's been almost a month and I'm still grieving her. I miss her greatly...

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RIP Jenny
by: Cath

Thank you for sharing your story of Jenny, Aimee. Please don't blame yourself. Chickens are very good at hiding the fact that they may be unwell, because to show any sign of weakness is to make themselves vulnerable to attack.

And sometimes, they just die for no apparent reason. As you say, no signs of illness, nothing obvious. It just happens, and it's so hard to take.

Remember: you gave Jenny a good home where she knew she was loved and cared for.

Thinking of yo.

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Carmelita is gone..

by Darryl
(Ailsa Craig, ON, CANADA)

Carmelita and buffs

Carmelita and buffs

Back in August, we got six Orpington chicks. These are the first chickens we have had. We found homes for the two cockerels when they revealed themselves.

All had gone well, pullets were now 24 weeks old, and growing fast. There were three buffs and one golden mix (Carmelita). She was our favourite, as she was so beautiful.

All the ladies were doing fine, even after a week of -30C temps. (Coop is heated). Last night I went to put them to bed, and Carmelita was fluffed up, sitting in a back corner. As it was dark already, I thought she has gone to sleep, and was just a bit dozy.

This morning, she was dead. Can’t see any injuries other than it looks like she may have been pecked about the head.

We have asked our chicken mentor for advice, but she didn’t see anything wrong.

We are very sad, as she was our favourite, and extra sad as these were our first birds, and we were getting very attached.

So sad to see her go....

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RIP Carmelita.
by: Cath

I'm so sorry to hear your story of Carmelita, Darryl. When a chicken dies for no apparent reason, it's always hard to take.

She was a very pretty hen, and she was obviously well cared for while she was with you. That is all we can hope for our chickens.

Thinking of you.

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Pez

by Rebecca
(Gambrills, Md)

I had to have my not even 10 month old sweet Pez euthanized today and I'm devastated.

3 days ago I noticed her wattle was pale and she was a little less active and had some watery poo. Yesterday she was pretty lethargic but still eating. This morning I came out and she was still up in the coop which she never does.

I picked her up and immediately felt that her crop was huge and very hard.

I brought her inside and gave her a warm Epsom bath just to try to make her feel better and gave her a little olive oil.

By the time I had finished drying her off, she was panting and in obvious pain.

We took her to the vet and everyone ooohed and awed over how beautiful she was but the vet's expression when he felt her crop told me it wasn't good.

We did x-rays and they showed her crop was solid packed and her stomach and intestines were bloated.

There was nothing they could do. Even if they were able to operate successfully on her crop there was nothing they could do for her stomach or intestines.

If we hadn't decided to allow them to preform euthanasia, she would have suffered a very painful death.

I held her, kissed her, snuggled her, cried on her, told her I loved her, that I was sorry, that she was a good girl.

My husband, big tough strong man, cried with me, held her, we said goodbye.

It was heartbreaking.

We had them do a necropsy on her to find out what had killed her.

It was mulch. She was filled solid with mulch and her little body couldn't get rid of it.

Pez was so sweet, brave and smart. She made everyone smile and laugh. She made people happy. She made my days brighter.

I've had to say goodbye to a lot of things I've loved but I honestly wasn't prepared for how hard saying goodbye to one of my chickens would be.

I guess love is love. Loss is loss.

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RIP Pez.
by: Cath

What a touching story, Rebecca, and a lovely memorial tribute to a much-loved chicken.

One of the very hardest things we have to do for our pets is realise when it's time to let them go. You made a courageous decision. She would have been in pain had she lived, and that would have been unfair.

You did everything you could for her, and while she was with you she led a happy, cared-for life.

Thinking of you in your loss.

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"Our George"

Our "George" was our only pet. She was so loyal, friendly, and so gentle to my 2 boys.

We had her for 2 years and slept in a chicken coop. She laid one egg a day and it was a daily excitement to run down the back and collect the egg. Everyday we would go up and feed her and let her out in the morning and put her back in every night.

This morning I went out like any other morning to give her a big bowl of scraps, only to find her house destroyed and her gone! A fox had taken her with a struggle by the looks. All that was left was scattered feathers and a broken house.

I was left standing there with her bowl of food in tears. How could this be. I looked and looked for her.

I had to break the news to my 2 boys while I drove them to school sobbing. We were still on the look out hoping to come across our "George."

RIP we miss you x

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RIP George.
by: Cath

I'm so sorry for your loss.

It's always so sad to hear of a much-loved hen or roo who has been the subject of a predator attack. We can only do our best for our hens for as long as we have them.

RIP George. You gave much happiness.

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Drw farms

by Drw
(Port huron Michigan )

Lost my first chicken on 3/28/19. She was a strong, beautiful ISA brown with a dusty yet welcome attitude.

She was first to go but she will be missed.

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So sorry for your loss.
by: Cath

RIP. It's always hard to lose a chicken. Losing the first one is the hardest.

Thinking of you.

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Kfc

by Nicole slape
(Idaho)

RIP KFC,

RIP KFC,

KFC was very sweet and gentle chicken! She was a Buff Orpington and she would always let me pick her up everyday for cuddles.

She was a big talker and was great company! She loved to eat bread and watermelon on a warm day!

On January 29th 2019 she was out free roaming with the rest of the flock and a hawk sadly took her out😭😭

I think about her everyday and will always miss her!

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RIP KFC
by: Cath

I'm so sorry to hear about KFC, Nicole. Sadly, chickens are the lowest of the pecking order and predators are always looking.

She had a good life while she was with you, and that's the important thing.

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Rosalinda

Rosalinda was a 2 week old Ayam Cemani. She loved to nest in my hoodie.

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by: Cath

I'm so sorry about Rosalinda. RIP.

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My sweet Delly

by Pam A
(Cedar Creek TX USA)

Sweet Delly.

Sweet Delly.

My sweet Delly will be missed. She was one of the most social chickens with an amazing personality!

My heart is broken as I found her dead from no apparent trauma or illness.

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RIP Delly.
by: Cath

I am so sorry to hear about Delly, Pam. Sometimes, sadly, chickens do just die for no apparent reason. Sudden Chicken Death is heartbreaking.

Delly will be missed. RIP.

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Louise

by Cindy M
(Pennsylvania )

Louise aka Wheezie
June 17, 2009 - June 27, 2019

To some you may just be a chicken. But to me you’ve been my pet for 10 years and 10 days.

I got you when you were just 2 days old.

You started out having your buddy Boogie as your chicken companion but sadly she passed at age 4. You and I became even closer then.

Everyday you looked forward to your smorgasbord of food and treats which included lettuce, cucumbers, corn, blueberries, cantaloupe, watermelon, saltine crackers and your favorite snack Cheez-it’s. As well as your chicken food.

People could never believe such a small chicken ate so much each day but you loved your food.

And I loved your loving company. Hearing your clucks and you chirping your little sounds. Seeing you get so excited and jump up and down when you would hear a treat bag.

And many years of your beautiful eggs that you laid. Chickens are very loving, intelligent and have personalities.

It won’t be the same without you now.

Rest In Peace Wheezie ❤️

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Goodbye, Louise.
by: Cath

Thank you so much for such a lovely tribute, Cindy. Louise was an adorable chicken - how beautiful she is in the photos you sent.

She had a lovely life with you, and for her to live until she was ten years old is a huge tribute to the love, care and kindness you showed her. It is very unusual for a chicken to live to such a grand old age.

RIP, Louise. You were a special chicken and you will not be forgotten.

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Goodbye Ladybug

by DMCox
(Bastrop TX)

My beautiful Gold Laced Cochin was found dead this afternoon.

Today was such a normal day. Everyone greeted me for treats this morning. I was gone a couple hours. When I returned Ladybug was behind the water bucket, laying down still.

I ran in to find her dead. Everyone else is fine-she appeared fine, just dead.

What a mystery. I am second guessing if I keep everything clean enough. We had a little cooler weather last night, did she get too cold? I'll never know.

I placed a couple pretty wildflowers in her wings and said goodbye. I have 6 remaining babies to care for, but none as beautiful as her :(.

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So sorry for your loss
by: Diana

I'm sorry that your Ladybug passed, It is SO hard to just find them still and gone. So many unanswered questions.

I, too, had a sweet Ladybug, she was a member of the group of girls called the "Bugg" sisters, there was June, Doodle and Lady. I love your description of her burial. <3

RIP Ladybug.
by: Cath

I'm so sorry to hear about beautiful Ladybug. Sometimes chickens die for no obvious reason. It's very hard to take, but it was probably nothing you could have done anything about.

She was well loved, and she had a good life. RIP, Ladybug.

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She’s My Boo

by Boo’s Mom
(Cincinnati, OH)

Boo,

You were a surprise pet that we took in when you were only two days old. The manager at TSC was going to put you down because something was wrong with your leg. We took you home to give you a chance.

You were immensely loved for eight weeks. You snuggled on my shoulder like an infant and would coo and snore. You were incredibly happy.

We are so glad you got to eat seeds, scratch, fresh blackberries, blueberries, and strawberries from our garden. The sun shone on you every morning when we put you outside for fresh air.

We are sorry your little legs just couldn’t support you as you grew bigger and more beautiful. We hope you are pecking and scratching with strong legs in heaven.

There will never be another Boo.

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Beautiful Boo.
by: Cath

Thank you so much for a lovely tribute, Boo's mum. She was a lucky girl to have been given a chance and she had a good life while she was with you.

You did everything you could, but sometimes we have to do the hardest thing to be kind to our flock.

It doesn't make it easier though.

RIP, Boo. You were loved.

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