I’m going to tell you a little secret, despite my enthusiasm for keeping and raising backyard chickens, I’m actually, deep down inside, in a place I don’t like to admit exists, kind of terrified of them. I’m scared of birds and getting pecked.
So why on earth would I want to keep chickens? For one thing, I like the idea that we can cultivate our own food and I can teach my children stewardship and where their food really comes from. For another thing, I have always had this idea that backyard chickens are just really cool, and I wasn’t wrong, they are, this was a great decision for our family. But finally, I really like doing things that scare me. I have learned that once you face your fears, most of the time you’ll discover they were unfounded, and next thing you know, one less fear.
And so I sit, Monday morning, one fear lighter.
We have two silkiess, a small breed with fine fluffy feathers and gentle dispositions. Because their feathers are so fine and so fluffy they get so much dirtier than our other chickens. This was a wet muddy winter. The silkies needed a bath. Surely they were not going to like this, right?
Well, I was surprised. Although everything I’d read said most chickens would actually, really enjoy a bath I was skeptical but… they actually really liked it. They chilled out and let me wash their feathers, their feet, and didn’t bat an eye when it was time for the blow dryer.
Cop was very gentle when he was petting them, and Henry helped when it was finally time to take them back to their nice clean coop the next morning. I always hold my breath when Hen picks up the chickens, imagining a Lennie situation, but he is calm, gentle, and responsible every time.