Monday, July 11, 2011

farm(ette) animals

Ed, Isis is spending every waking minute in the farmhouse. I'm standing poised with the vacuum, ready to catch any hair that may fall from his nape. Last night he watched TV with us all evening long (Hoop Dreams – a very very long movie),  this morning, he is at the door again, asking to come in for breakfast. (He likes to check on everyone’s food, though he’ll be satisfied with his own bowl of milk. Organic, fat free.)

Sometimes, can we just say no?
To his begging outside?
Yes. He’ll meow and retreat. (I don’t really believe it though. That cat can sit patiently for hours, waiting to be let in so that he can hightail it over to his favorite spot – on the couch, in my corner, right by my computer.)


To demonstrate my otherwise kind feelings toward animals, especially farm(ette) animals, I throw out a suggestion. Should we get chickens? A friend yesterday was telling me about her chickens in her back yard off of Willie Street. We have all this land! She said it’s easy. Just give them water and food.

We hunt on the Internet for people’s reflections on raising chickens. Sounds not so easy at all. Sounds like Isis is easier. Open the door, feed him milk, organic, low-fat, vacuum up hairs after he leaves. Chickens – if they’re babes, you have to do complicated temperature manipulation. And eventually their “productivity” goes down and you have to... make chicken stew out of them. I’m not going to ax off the head of Martha the hen once she stops laying eggs. Will you?

How about goats? They’ll eat your grass. A regular lawn service. And maybe give milk? And who is going to milk the goat? I will. We look up goats on Craigslist. $150 and that’s before you get the goat supplies. Surely they need toys and bedding and...

I think about the huge amount of work the porch project has been – even more for Ed than for me, though I still need to finish painting today. I’m aware of the front porch that still needs to be replaced and the cedar planks that are in need of a fresh coat of paint.

Let’s think about the animals, okay?

In the meantime, I walk over to the farmers’ hut in the fields by our farmette. We hear a rooster crowing and I want to locate the source. Ah. So they keep a caged rooster here. Interesting.


I don’t want to cage a rooster. I don’t want to buy a tractor for chickens and wheel them from one spot to the next. I don’t want electric fencing and I don’t want to chase the old hen once she’s done with the egg laying bit.

Ed, we need some eggs.
We get on the motorbike and zip over to Copps. Organic, free range.