Just curious - how many of you softies end up with pets?

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by elizabethbinary, Feb 4, 2011.

  1. elizabethbinary

    elizabethbinary Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 22, 2010
    Brisbane, Australia
    Not ALL pets of course - but there is that hen, that chick, that meatie - what have you - that just STEALS YOUR DARN HEART. One of my hatchlings today was on it's 3rd day hatching and it wasn't moving for 12 hours at all so I peeked inside, expecting a dead hatch. It was weak but alive. I got it out of there perfectly alive and now the poor little guy is taking his big post-hatch sleep and doing well! But maaaan I do not need more adorable little ducks looking up at me with cute little duck eyes. This and the darn meat chicken that was like, "I'm gonna die! CUDDLE ME PLEASE MAMA!" and attaching itself to me.

    Surely I can't be the only one that, out of 12 little meat babies I go, "This one? This one is gonna be a pet!" I'd say 1 out of 30 becomes a pet. Hopefully once I drink some cement and harden up I can make that ratio 1 in 1000.

    What are your odds?
  2. Omniskies

    Omniskies Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 7, 2008
    I fell for a rooster once. It was ridiculously pathetic.

    I had bought a cage of bantam roosters to butcher since we were tanning the hides and doing lovely things with the feathers (then making chicken stock and other tasty things). One of the roosters in the cage spent all of its time hanging out closer to the people, watching them, and making little noises. I picked him up twice to process him and each time he hung out in my hand and looked at me as if he was saying "Alright, I'm in your hand. What sort of exciting thing are we going to do now?" He never struggled, never flapped his wings. Just hung out there without a care in the world. Each time I put him back so he'd get a few minute reprieve.

    Once I finished all of the other roosters and went back to him I just couldn't do it. At that time my method of killing was to hang a bantam upside down, then take shears to the head to lop it off while holding onto them. I flipped him upside down and he just hung there looking at me.

    I had to take him down and find a new home for him. He wasn't sick, he wasn't unhealthy in any way, and he didn't seem mentally derranged. He was just full of trust and didn't have a care in the world. When I set him down on the ground he hung out around my feet as if I wasn't the person who had bought him specifically to turn him into piles of meat and feathers.

    He got a new home a few days later where he became the top dog in a flock of laying hens. He wasn't needed there, but he didn't take up any room, didn't really eat much, and his new family really enjoyed having him in with the girls.

    Usually I'm fine - I've accepted that birds are tasty and have a great life while they're around. And that each happy bird that goes to the pot at my house is one less tortured bird being raised for my table. When you look at it that way it's easier to enjoy the babies and dote on them, but still put them in the freezer eight weeks later.

    But a mutt bantam rooster I had for less than two days? Couldn't do it.
  3. dirtsaver

    dirtsaver Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 20, 2010
    Northern Kentucky
    I know it sounds silly coming from a crusty old geezer....but almost all the girls are pets to me. Especially our Black Australorps. But I can't picture ever putting any of the laying girls in the pot.

  4. Omniskies

    Omniskies Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 7, 2008
    I can only eat the birds that are for the pot. I couldn't dream of eating my other birds. I have to set up a very clear boundary between what is being kept and what goes to Freezer Camp.
  5. chicks4kids

    chicks4kids Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 22, 2009
    Northern Indiana
    I have a BBW turkey that was to be dinner 2 Thanksgivings ago...she lives out with the chickens and is cute as heck...spoiled rotten big girl [​IMG]
  6. Dogfish

    Dogfish Rube Goldberg incarnate

    Mar 17, 2010
    Western Washington
    Tom, a BBB, was an excellent turkey. Came to see me every day when I got home, waiting for me to open my car door, as if to ask, "Dude, where's my corn?" He was the protector of the flock, chickens and turkeys, and was quite magnificent.


    We ate him for Thanksgiving and I had tears in my eyes as I gave my toast to him. My father-in-law also had grown quite attached to him, and refused to eat any of him at dinner. I think I will raise another pair this year, in addition to the ones my heritage birds hatch out.
  7. DianeS

    DianeS Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 28, 2010
    I haven't kept a chicken for a pet yet, but I've saddled myself with a pet rabbit!

    I bought a meatie litter of eight rabbits. But when the day came to butcher there was one I just couldn't. I tossed it in the chicken run while I took care of the others, thinking that once I'd done the others I wouldn't think about it so much. Nope, still couldn't! Thankfully it was a doe. I decided I could just put her with my breeding does and keep her.

    Yeah - that was a month ago. She's still living indoors. [​IMG] She has a name. I feed her from my hand and let her run around the house with the dog. I'm a pushover!
  8. magicpigeon

    magicpigeon Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 9, 2010
    One in every 5 I would say. Or perhaps, even less. Every single rooster I've had, I've kept. I have a soft spot for roosters that I just don't get with the hens. All of mine get extra scratch and def. more TLC when it's cold. I even put some ice cubes in their water on hot days [​IMG]
    This is the case in point with all my silkie roosters. The neighbours hate them! But we deal with the problem and soundproof them until an acceptable time of 8:00 in the morning. But they are my absolute favourites and I couldn't ever give them away. I've had 2 offers now from unidentified asian couples who saw my birds free ranging and asked for the roosters for some stock. I couldn't do it! they offered $20 each but...[​IMG]
  9. booker81

    booker81 Redneck Tech Girl

    Apr 18, 2010
    I'm a weirdo that doesn't really get attached...I mean, I like my chickens, but if they are needing to go to freezer camp, well, off they go.

    I'm getting pigs this year, and someone asked me what's going to happen when I decide that they are just too fun and cool to slaughter. I don't think that could happen - my love for bacon is much stronger than my love for feeding a pig....

    I did spare two hens that I picked up to slaughter...because they were pure Ameruacana and I was hoping they'd lay me some blue eggs after they molted....which they did.

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