Wednesday, January 13, 2021

A Sigh of Relief

 Today life is good. 

After several days of improved behavior from Sweet Pea, I think it's safe to say she's out of the woods.

She's active, roaming in the hay aisle and around thge barn

Helen still pecks her, but I can't really control that.  Interestingly, Helen had not displayed bully behavior until last week.  But this is the first time we've have a weakened bird since Helen joined the flock -- she was one of the four we adopted from the Michigan Humane Society last year.  

It was not until today I saw improvement from Lily, though.  But I'm hopeful.
Here's the scoop on Lil.  (my college roommate for three years was Lily so this name always makes me smile).

She was quite lethargic.

She's on the far left with her head next to the wall

I observed her eating but she'd frequently stand off by herself, out of the hustle and bustle of the rest of the girls.  And more telling was her extremely poopy butt.  It took several (stinky) episodes of Rick holding and me cleaning.  Peeeuuu.  That appeared to be (maybe) a symptom of vent gleet, a yeast infection.  NO antibiotics allowed.  I cobbled together a plan based on what I read online and what a couple of conversations with the owner of a local feed store suggested.  Apple cider vinegar in the water, followed by a probiotic to replenish flora.
Cross your fingers and toes, please that she continues to improve.  Today was the first day she was joining the rest of the girls for an afternoon treat of banana and bird seed.

So, many thanks for your good wishes for both of the girls.  It appeared to have helped.

Now, these are a couple of the photos I meant to share with you a week and a half ago following a fresh snow.

This is the beauty that greet me on the walk up the driveway to the barn.

The down side is we have not received one iota of snow since.  Which means the original snowfall has been packed down nicely and has transformed into slick conditions.  For people and the donks.
Everyone is mincing around, even Faith (greyhound).  Just the other day, she very carefully made her way down the driveway to the house.  Minutes later I left the house to feed donks and Gunner (13 year old rottweiller mix) came barreling from the side of the house, in fifth gear up the drive.

In my mind, a bag of pine shavings in the barn is a lot like duct tape to others.  You never know when it will come in handy.

   This is right at the entryway to the donkey yard.  It's just a small dip down, but it's always the most treacherous zone.  A dusting of shavings saves the day.  I was in the midst of doing this very sprinkling a couple of weeks ago when out went my feet.  Had the darnedest time trying to get up.  Friend J2 slipped recently and broke a wrist so I will use any trick to necessary to prevent damage.  

I also sprinkled some on solid ice near the water trough to try to stave off donkey feet slippage.  

Here's to solid footing for us all.


  1. Great news about Sweetpea Janet and hopefully Lily is now on the mend. I know all about mucky bums at the moment. Both Ivy and Violet have had mucky bottoms. Don't really know what's caused it but they are fine in themselves (touching wood ... again). If it was summer I would give them both a bath, but it's much too cold for that. I might have a go at chopping some of the dirty feathers off if I can get husband to hold them still. Anything to do with chickens is a two man/woman job. Keep us updated on Lily. You have obviously worked your magic and yes I believe Apple Cider Vinegar is very good for them. I have been giving Vi Cod Liver Oil and a drop of Poultry Spice with her food. Take care in your frozen world. You have too much to do and too many to look after to sustain any injuries.

    1. Louise, in my recent online research frenzy, I have found so many conflicting opinions. I've read some say no do NOT give apple cider vinegar. Do not use diatemaceous earth - ever!! It's exhausting.