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Archive for the ‘Izzy’ Category

I have struggled to find the words to write this little tribute to this special little lady. It has all been so very sad, especially after reading back over my previous blog post.

Little Izzy chicken came to us all the way from Somerset. We had been looking for a friend for Effie and this little fluffy white angel seemed perfect. She had a bad leg, but nothing that some painkillers and arnica rubs wouldn’t sort out…or so we believed.

Sometimes when you are caring for a girl, you become so intent on looking for every minor improvement and trying so hard to save her, that you fail to see the bigger picture. When she arrived Izzy could walk, albeit with a limp. By the time she told me it was time for her to go, she could not even right herself in a sitting position. We had been nursing her so closely – taking her out of the coop in the morning, hand feeding her, syringing in water and medicines, massaging her leg, bathing her dirty knickers, settling her for the day, moving her around each hour so she didn’t sit in the sun, tucking her up for bed – that I do not think we realised how ill she had become. However, these are things I would have happily continued doing if she was going to get well but little Izzy was deteriorating and her quality of life was minimal.

Izzy rests in the shade under her apple tree and Gamesmaker umbrella

Izzy rests in the shade under her apple tree and Gamesmaker umbrella

Uncle Jason agreed with me and also with my concerns that she was possibly suffering from Mareks. We decided she should be able to go to sleep with dignity and she drifted off peacefully in my arms. She was cremated that day with sweet peas tucked under her wings and her ashes are now with those of the big girls. I asked Bunty Goodchicken and Clara to look after her, they are kind girls and will see she is cared for.

We only had three weeks with Izzy, not enough time at all, we never had the chance to really get to know her. However my overriding memories of her are this beautiful powder puff of a hen, sweet and gentle. When we picked her up, she clung furiously to our fingers with her good foot. Clinging onto us just as she was clinging onto life.

But now she is free to run and jump and fly without any pain or suffering.

RIP precious darling Izzy, fly high little hen xx

Miss Izzy Hen

Miss Izzy Hen

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On Friday evening, a very special little Silkie hen travelled across three counties to come and live with us. Bullied by her coop mates she had been seeking sanctuary in a rabbit hutch until her new life began.

The day before she came to live with us she had somehow been attacked by other hens in her flock and on opening up her cat carrier we discovered this special baby was unable to walk. Her left leg hung lifelessly and at a scary angle. After an arnica rub and painkiller she was tucked up in her new coop with her warm duck-shaped wheatbag. The next day Uncle Jason could find nothing broken or obviously wrong and thought she had nerve damage. After also seeking advice from specialist chicken vets I put her on metacam and continued with the three times a day arnica rubs. If it is nerve damage, it may well take time to heal.

Miss Izzy Hen

Miss Izzy Hen

So for the past week, little Izzy hen has had cuddles and massages and medicine and has been fed tempting treats. Her previous owner warned me she was suffering from depression and I believe she is. She is sad, limpy and lonely. Seeing her struggle is heartbreaking. When I pick her up she trembles in fear and at first when I clambered into her run she struggled desperately to get away. It was a pitiful sight. But in the past few days she hasn’t tried to escape me and has even let me stroke her as she sat on the grass.

I remember another little hen who was terrified, traumatised and trembled when she was touched…

Little Effie, is intrigued by her new friend. The first time she saw her she threw herself against the fence as expected. Izzy squeaked in fear and Effie immediately backed off, somewhat ashamed. Since then, Effie has cautiously watched Izzy and even sat on the other side of the fence to her. They actually seem to enjoy each other’s company. Two little hens with broken hearts and bodies who, I am hoping by all things good in the world, will find love and friendship together.

There seems to be a poignant symmetry in the fact that Effie lost Miss Basket, the little hen with the bad leg who cared for her and helped mend her spirit, and is now with another hen with a bad leg whose own spirit needs Effie to help mend it.

Hello. My friend Miss Basket had a bad leg too, just like you...

Hello. My friend Miss Basket had a bad leg too, just like you…

This evening, after what has admittedly been a difficult week (Hetty is broody to add to our troubles), we had two very, very small but I hope significant steps in the rehabilitation of Izzy’s spirit and body and of Effie’s heart.

As Izzy stood up, she used her bad leg to help push her up to a standing position. She has never done that before and it is a start. But perhaps most importantly, when Izzy had had her massage she squawked in distress as she was put back on the ground. Immediately, Effie came rushing across to the fence and chirruped at Izzy, checking she was OK.

Little, but important steps and as my lovely friend and long-time Effie supporter Quolanta said:

Little steps make the longest friends

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