With all my good intentions to write articles in advance, I was occupied with more important matters. We witnessed a medical miracle which left us completely baffled. One of our chickens was put to sleep, but didn’t die!
The little chicken that could
You might have picked up on my enthusiasm in one of my previous personal updates, or on Twitter. A couple of weeks ago we got us a couple of chickens, which ended up to be a lovely addition to our family. We let them out in the backyard and enjoy their content (and sometimes mischievous) cackling even more than we do their fresh little eggs. I put in a lot of effort to make them friendly and it didn’t take me long to feed them from my hand and even cuddle them in my lap.
Unfortunately one of them fell ill. Her crop (the sack under her throat, where chickens store food to digest later) was obstructed, and over the course of a couple of days this condition caused her to starve and poison herself. It was an awful sight, and we were torn between doing everything to rescue our new pet and to make smart, life-conscious decisions about what’s right. As this chick was trying so hard to live despite being so ill, it wasn’t an easy or straightforward choice.
Friday we managed to find a specialist who could empty her crop through the throat, under a full anesthetic. He soon felt that the obstruction was actually a tumor (not uncommon with young chickens), and advised us to not let our chicken wake up anymore. We agreed, as we previously decided we wouldn’t want to drag a pet with a relatively short lifespan through a deadly illness.
As we helped during the procedure, we witnessed how she received two lethal injections to put her down. Her breathing took a while to subside, which is common with euthanizing chickens; their autonomous system also causes them to run around even after they have their heads chopped off. We left her deep asleep on the operating table, a sad sight in a puddle of grey goo.
I shed a couple of tears. Especially after two days of giving her hourly massages to try and start her digestion, I really started to love that chicken. At least she wouldn’t have to suffer or fade away.
I guess you could say a little miracle happened.
Five hours later we received a call from the vet. After we left, he had opened her up to determine what kind of tumor he was dealing with, and found out it actually was an obstruction lodged stuck in the bottom of her crop. As he saw she was still breathing steadily despite two lethal dosages to put her down, he quickly intubated her again, removed the obstruction (which ended up to be a ball of long fibers), patched her up and observed her in wonder. He didn’t want to warn us straight away, as this turned out to be a unique situation and this animal was supposed to be dead. But after five hours, our chicken was standing up in her cardboard box, walking around like nothing happened.
Our pet survived being put to sleep, by two lethal injections. The vet’s words were that he never experienced anything similar in his career, and was as amazed as we were. The next morning we came by to pick her up, and she jumped out of her box curiously and enthusiastically.
Needless to say we already promoted her to our new cult-leader, the new Messiah, zombie chicken or simply Frankenchick.
It’s amazing – better yet, simply unbelievable – to see our chick trash around the yard like nothing happened. Of course we need to wait and see whether the procedure has had a permanent impact on her health. It’s also possible that she has developed a clog further down her digestive system, which simply can’t be cured. But for now we’re happy to see how our chickens are reunited, and that she makes a cheerful and healthy impression.
Whatever happens, we’re happy with the second chance we were given, and we’re going to make the best of it.
So, what now?
Naturally this emotional rollercoaster caused my 30-day challenge to suffer a little. But fortunately, not as much as you’d think! You’ll read all about it in the upcoming, second part of the challenge report.
Yet I can safely conclude that the Miracle Morning has had a tremendously positive effect on me so far. Truth be told, I don’t think I would have been able to keep my head together last week without what it has taught me so far!
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Have you ever heard of an animal who survived being put down? Naturally I’m curious! Further on I hope you’ll have a lovely week!