Brave lil’ fella

This afternoon I had a rare nap, followed by a crying fit … and then this. For those who don’t know Charlie, he’s terrified of the chickens. But not today. Today he’s a brave lil’ fella.

I’ve always leaned into the chickens for therapy. Just watching them run through the yard allows me to zone out and soothe frayed nerves. But for my pup Charlie, the birds have served as a source of fear.

When I got my first flock almost seven years ago, Charlie was curious about the baby chicks. He gently sniffed them, cautiously looking up to me for approval. As they got their big girl feathers, Charlie would bashfully follow them around the yard.

Back then, I had three chickens: Loretta (a black copper marans), GiGi ( an Olive Egger) … and then there was Nellie. I don’t recall much about her breed, a Dominique. But she was feisty from day one. Loud. Curious.

One day everything changed. Nellie started charging my feet. Then she aimed her ire at Charlie. She would let him get close, then flap her wings to levitate just high enough so she could kick him in the face.

As predicted, the pup didn’t take kindly to her persistent attacks. And with this second flock, of course there’s an Easter Egger who has taken to goading Charlie into feather-flapping fights. Sometimes I catch a moment of it, most times I hear Charlie’s loud squeals and he does his best to look tough.

So today, seeing Charlie side-by-side with Spunky … this was a victory. Relationships may be fickle, but this pup hasn’t given up hope.

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