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Victorian Anna and Chicken

Every now and then I like to look back at some of my favorite photos of my daughter and then try to recreate them, so I can compare how much she’s changing. I thought this year would probably be the last that she could fit into the authentic Victorian top, and I was right! I just managed to get all the clasps fastened, but another inch and she would have been busting out of the top. She’s got another year or so to fit into the skirt, and there’s a cape she can wear instead of the shirt, for when I retake this in another 2 years.

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Goldilocks, the Chicken

Goldilocks in her “hospital ward” in the basement.

So about a month ago our golden Pullet chicken, Goldilocks, was attacked by something. We found her laying under the hanging food bin and after calling to the chickens and seeing she wasn’t coming out, we picked her up. That’s when we saw the blood on her foot. Something, still not sure what, attacked her and really mangled one of her ‘fingers’ and palm. Frantic, we called all the vets in town and not one would look at a chicken. You have to understand, we’ve had our chickens since they were chicks last year, and consider them our pets (I mean seriously, they’re named!) We were mostly worried about infection, but in Pennsylvania you can’t even seem to get animal antibiotics at the feed stores. That meant we had to use whatever we had around us to try to save Goldilocks. We took a wardrobe box, laid it on its side, cut a huge hole out of the top, and filled it with pine shavings under a heat lamp in our basement. We have a big vat of silver sulfadiazine so we cleaned Goldi’s wound with copious amounts of hydrogen peroxide and then gobbed the silver cream all over her wound, then wrapped it up with sterile gauze. She survived the night. We kept cleaning her wound, changing bandages, and having her under the heat lamp, and she kept on living. Now that it’s getting warmer, we’re starting to bring her outside.

Enjoying the outside fresh air.

See, the thing is, she’s not standing. Her wounded ‘finger’ is fat and probably still hurts, so she won’t put any pressure on it. She’s eating, drinking, generally being a chicken sans laying eggs. But she needs to walk if she has any hope of being a normal chicken again. I really hope she can do it.

Steadying herself with a wing.
The brood checking her out.
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Chicken Ride!

cat chicken ride

Last year we took Puddy and Merlin out to say hello to the chickens. We cautiously introduced them (cats were on harnesses) and it turned out the cats were 1. more interested in chomping on the grass, and 2. the chickens scared the cats! Needless to say, there weren’t many more visits. That said, as I was sitting at my desk this morning, wondering which painting to start first, the chicken one I’d drawn out a while ago won out. Why? Well, because as I was thinking, I could hear the chickens bok’ing outside as they laid their eggs!

Chicken and Cat WIP
Painting the barred rock hen.
Painting in the kitty.
All done!