by Gail Bourne
(Kingussie Scotland )
I rescued my beautiful sweet Morag in July of 2018, along with 7 other gorgeous girls, ex battery hens. I loved and spoilt them.
From April 2019 I lost my first one. And so it went on till at 17 months I had lost Attila the top chook, which left me with my Morag, who lived indoors all the time with me.
The other girls wouldn't accept her. She and I became inseparable. She wouldn't go anywhere unless I was with her. She had a travel cot to sleep in my kitchen but mostly she was with me in the house by my feet or on the sofa, or in the garden right by my feet.
We would spend hours in the shed with door open. She would be in and out but only by the door, never far from me. She loved sun bathing and dust baths, she loved sweetcorn and cucumber noodles and cheese - they were her favourites. And lettuce, blueberries and grapes.
I loved my girl more than I can say, and although I loved all of them and each time I had them put to sleep it broke me.
Morag had to go yesterday, but because of the covid virus I wasn't allowed in with her. It destroyed me. I had a panic attack. I fell down demented shouting bring her to me, she needs her mummy, she will think I abandoned her.
As you may be aware, chickens take a long time to go to sleep - at least 35 mins. One of mine took 50 mins. They need 4 or 5 injections. My poor baby had to go through that without me. I've been cheated of being with my baby in her hour of need.
The vet brought her out to me before she gave her the last injections. Morag was sleeping but still alive. The vet said she could hear me. I doubted it but I hugged her kissed her told her sorry for letting her down, sobbing uncontrollably. Then after 5 mins I handed her back so vet could do the last injections.
My heart is broken eternally and I'm racked with guilt, I can't cope at the moment, can't sleep, just sobbing. The pain is torture. It was torture not being with her. She had a reaction to the injection and was regurgitating and flapping. My poor baby without me there to sooth her - it's torture.
She was my love and my life, my whole world. She meant everything to me. I saved her but she saved me. We were soul buddies, such great companions. My life is empty and full of pain without her.
All my girls died of egg peritonitis. Battery hens go through so much, it's so sad but my Morag was with her mummy for 22 months of totally spoiling her. She could do no wrong. She loved eating my flowers as well but I don't care.
All the girls did what they wanted, the other girls - Effie, Edna, Ethel, Skye, Ness, Attila and Dino lived in a big shed with a coop inside the shed. It was totally weather proof, they would come out in the garden only if I stayed out with them, or they would just stay in shed. They felt protected with me there.
But my Morag has totally broken my heart forever. What she went through. I don't care about me, only her.
God bless my sweet, loving, loyal, trusting, gentle companion. My life is empty and painful without you, sweet girl. Mummy will love you always and forever.