Today has been all about Emerald

Yesterday afternoon when I found that Emerald was struggling I thought that it was just that the heat had got too much for her. I thought a good nights rest would see her back to normal but this morning I realised that that wasn’t so at all.

Emerald this morning

When I gave out the morning sunflower seeds Emerald flopped to the patio and even when I sprinkled them in front of her she wasn’t interested.

I bought her in to the bathroom so that I could give her some food without competition. I made a dish of mash and topped it with sunflower hearts and chopped grape.

I let her roam the bathroom

Emerald ended up sitting on the bathroom floor

I decided that sitting on a hard floor couldn’t be comfortable for her so I decided to take her back out. I put her in the chicken shed with door held open and her treats by her.

I put her back in the chicken shed

It soon felt hot in the chicken shed and I decided to move her to her favourite shady corner by the shelter with her dishes.

I felt encouraged that she was eating the chopped grape

Meanwhile the three amigos have found their way across the patio area at last

In other news, Blue crowed for the first time, yesterday afternoon.

As Emerald moved around I kept following her with the dish of treats

She settled in the shelter so I moved the treats there

She looked hot so I soaked the shelter and the soil inside the shelter and either side of it outside.

Emerald returned to her favourite corner again

I had dampened the ground and the tapas dish has a slice of melon topped with chopped grapes. She was pecking at the melon and eating the bits of grape.

At the end of the day she was back in the shelter

This is absolutely heart breaking. She is my oldest girl and has always been a favourite of mine since we got her.

I knew she had been feeling her age as she had slowed down and was sitting and dozing a lot during the day. She has also been coming out of the chicken shed about half an hour later than the other girls each morning.

She has been heavily moulting too and I think the heat wave on top has just been too much for her.

I know that once more I have a terrible decision to make. I can’t let her suffer but every time she eats some grape I feel a flicker of hope. I keep wondering if she starts eating again could she bounce back and yet I know that she cannot survive on chopped grape alone but I can’t bear to give up on her just yet.

I checked on her again before our evening meal. She was on the bottom rung of the ladder. It was so sad because Emerald and Speckles have always tried to sleep outside and would be on any of the high perches. I have never liked the idea of them sleeping outside and always moved them to the chicken shed later in the evening. I had decided that tonight I would let them sleep out as it would be cooler.

After dinner I checked again and was surprised to see that she had made it to the perch at the top of the ladder. Again a flicker of hope.

The two bigger girls at bedtime in one of their usual positions

I was pleased to find that the chicks had made their own way into the chicken shed. They were heaped in the corner and once again I lifted them to the perch.

I returned to check on the two bigger girls later in the evening. I was shocked to find that Speckles had abandoned Emerald and had gone to perch in the chicken shed. This has never happened before. They have always been inseparable. It was so sad and really told me the truth about Emerald’s condition. With a lump in my throat I picked Emerald up and took her to the chicken shed. I placed her next to Speckles. No way would I let her sleep out on her own.

I can hardly bear to see what the morning will bring.

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14 Responses to Today has been all about Emerald

  1. sophie says:

    Oh I’m so sorry Carol – it’s so horrible to see them weaken. Big hugs to you xx

    • Carol says:

      It is awful. This morning she stayed perched in the chicken shed. I have just checked again (nearly nine o’clock) and she has made it to the pop hole. The shed is too warm. I have put her back in the wooden shelter as it’s the coolest spot with some chopped grape but I feel she will have to be put to sleep today. I have deliveries to do soon so will call the vet when I get back. I feel vert heavy hearted.

  2. sophie says:

    Aw Carol – I’ve emailed you xx

  3. Lucy says:

    so so sorry…..so much for your kind heart……

  4. marion.pharo says:

    So sorry to hear you so sad news.

  5. David says:

    You always do what is right. Thinking of you.

  6. Jenny says:

    It is absolutely heartbreaking I know. My favourite chicken – my pekin Bernadette- has been off colour for a few weeks but not getting any worse. Then yesterday all of a sudden she lost the use of her legs. I brought her indoors into the coolest room in the house but she wouldn’t eat at all, only drink when I held her upright by the water. I felt there was a good chance she wouldn’t make it through the night so I wanted her to be with her flock mates rather than indoors on her own. She went into the nest box rather than the main bit of the Cube but still looked ok when I checked them for the last time last night. This morning when I went out to let the chicks out she hadn’t got up with the other 3 girls, and I knew, and sure enough she was dead in the nest box. I’m absolutely gutted and miss her so much already. I hope you have a better outcome with Emerald and she can pull through whatever ails her. I think this heat is making everything worse.

    • Carol says:

      I so feel for you. It is so awful but I had hoped in a way that Emerald would be gone like that because it is also so awful to have to take them to the vets and missing them is the same either way. We can only do our best and in the end we can’t stop them leaving us. The heat has certainly not helped. I feel for you as I know we are going through the same thing.

  7. Christian Lee says:

    What a shame. She had a good life though and was well cared for. Sorry for the loss.

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