First, an apology to all the blogs I usually read. I have not been reading much. It has been a very busy time here, and I just don't seem to find the time lately to keep up with reading my favorite blogs. Rest assured, I will get back to it soon! I have a lot of deadlines at the moment, but they will soon pass.
In the meantime, I wanted to write a quick blog about my white silkie rooster, Snowball. It's kind of a girly name, isn't it.....well, that's OK, because Snowball is a very unusual rooster. I have heard him crow once or twice, but generally, he's very quiet. He also loves to be picked up and cuddled, which is nothing like most of my other roosters. So, his name suits him. After today, in chicken terms, we might also say that he's a few eggs short of a dozen.
Snowball decided that on this very chilly April day, in which we had significant snowfall and sleet, that he would just hang around outside. Most of the chickens went into their respective coops for most of the day, venturing out only for short eating binges or nest box forays. Snowball, on the other hand, was behaving like it might be midsummer. So, when I went out to do an egg check in the late afternoon, there he was....the most bedraggled and sad looking roo I ever saw!
I brought him inside. Really, I couldn't stand leaving him out there. He'd been hanging out with the ducks, who had been treading the snow into the mud and making a mess. He was filthy, wet, and shivering.
I first gave him a little warm bath in the sink. He just kind of lay there, pathetically, while I gave him a bath. I washed him carefully all over and tried to get him cleaned up.
Then, I had to blow dry him. It takes a very long time to blow dry a silkie.
Even after the blow-drying (during which he acted like he might die at any minute, just laying there limply), he didn't have much energy.
I wrapped him in a fleece blanket and took him upstairs. I sat with him on my lap for a while. He drooped his head and looked miserable.
I went to the kitchen and fixed him some of my favorite chicken treat - cottage cheese, warmed, with a little grain (usually quinoa) and some oatmeal and some "kickin' chicken" oil blend for energy. I brought it to him. He very half-heartedly stuck his beak in it and nibbled, but didn't really put much effort in. I thought he might be "on his way out" so to speak. I tried to make him comfortable.
So, he stayed wrapped in his blankie for a couple of hours in a basket, occasionally making odd little purring noises, and then becoming silent. I was working on writing a paper and was concentrating, so eventually, when he made a squawking noise, I'd nearly forgotten he was there. I asked him if he wanted more cottage cheese mix, and he said he did. He hungrily ate the entire rest of the dish.
He's now sleeping comfortably, not shivering, having perched himself on the edge of the basket, looking clean, dry, and warm.
Silly chicken. I bet he'd do it all over again tomorrow if I let him. I think he'll stay inside for another day until our weather warms up again.