Greetings Space Cadets, devastating news today we lost one of our little girls, OxO. OxO was one of our first girls, and the first of my girls to become my friend letting me scoop her up for cuddles.
She was her normal little trouble making self until Tuesday. We thought it was just the weather as Monday we had several hours of mid-day darkness from the Sahara dust from ex-hurricane Ophelia and Monday night was horrendous winds that took the covers off their enclosure. Thankfully they are all sleeping in the shed, and had to day in there on Tuesday morning while I rebuilt everything.
When they all came out OxO and Gravy would not play they just stood under the bush, wouldn’t even come out for Worms. I thought she was just frightened from the bad weather, and crawled under to bush to take to where. She was still offer food and not playing as normal, so I scooped her up for a cuddle. But she just laid on my knee almost lifeless. She came around a little shortly after and I found a couple of mites on Gravy, so I thought that maybe OxO might be upset if mites gotten on her, so I treated all the girls their enclosure beds everything. All the girls looked like ghosts. OxO had picked up a bit on Wednesday and no one had any more mites. OxO and I played one of her favourite games ‘Shovel Time’ where I dig for worms with her help. But by the afternoon she had slowed down again, and we took her to the Vets. The Vet couldn’t see anything wrong and gave her some pain killers, thinking it might be strain from some super-sized double yokers that she had laid over the last month. She started to pick up over the next three days and on Saturday was playing just like she always was, and at bed time she was back to wanted to be up on top of the coop taking with me.
However, this morning, when I came out to wake everyone up for breakfast at 0730 she was completely different. She couldn’t get up and her comb was incredibly dark, we took her in to the house she was so weak. She sat warm getting cuddles all morning being hand fed her favourite sweetcorn and worms, until the Vet opened, and we had to say Goodbye to our little baby OxO.
OxO who I also called Red or Fluff Ball, was a cheeky little chicken and was one of our first girls, and the first of my girls to become my friend letting me scoop her up for cuddles. When she was a little chick when we lived in Cumbria she would follow me around to see if I had brought her something or to be scooped up for a cuddle. If I had picked anyone else up first she would follow behind me squawking at me as walked with them in my arms until she was picked up for a for her cuddle.
OxO and I would go for our little walks, her all cosy in my arms and during the winter months she would wrap her wings around my hand and finger to keep them warm. And when she sat on my knee she would not sit across my knee like every other normal chicken, she had to lay facing me right up my chest and squinting my me with her beady eye, one shut and the other half open, or with her wing out sunbathing.
The first time OxO seen the snow she didn’t know what to make of it. She wanted to follow me, and I walked to the bottom of the garden. OxO chased in my footsteps, got half way and looked at me with a look of ‘Carry Me’ then ran in a straight line back in to the house to warm her toes.
During the Floods in Cumbia in December 2015 we had to rescue our girls in the dark from there shed that was now underwater, and we moved them into the conservatory where they ended up living for more than 6 months. But once we got them all in and went back into the living room OxO, frightened was going mad at the glass door form the conservatory in to the living room where I was sitting on the floor resting after rescuing them. We opened the door and OxO ran in and dived into my arms, poor little girl was frightened and wanted to be in the one place she knows was safe.
If ever the weather was bad you could always find OxO back in the Coop laying in the doorway where she could keep an eye on the weather or for me coming with treats.
When I came with treats or something she decided that she wanted she would do the cutest little hops to get up to whatever we had brought, and she made the most adorable little squeaks then she talked to me.
OxO was a truth little girl and always won any challenges to her place in the pecking order, mainly Tikka. OxO could make herself Big and could deliver the message to Tikka jumping up and smacking down on the challenger. Even when she was injured and limping for a fall she still stood her ground.
When she hurt her leg, she was playing as usual and must have taking a tumble and came back limping looking for us, and spent the next week warm on my knee leaning back resting her leg.
After OxO lost her sister Paxo she didn’t lay an egg for 2 months grieving for her sister, but now they will be playing always. OxO and Paxo spent all their time together playing together. OxO was a solid Red but after Paxo was gone she changed her feather, getting Paxo white neck and maxing all the colours on her back.
My Cheeky Little OxO will be missed, she will be playing with her sister Paxo, Always.
Below are some photos from over the past 2 and a half years with OxO from when we first had her as a little chick to today and all the trouble in-between.