What would YOU do?


11 Years
12 Years
Jan 25, 2008
The Wilds of Western PA
We were given our chickens by a friend of a friend. Their previous owner was going through a divorce, (or so we thought) and needed to rehome her chickens because she was leaving her husband and he didn't take care of them. This was end of September, beginning of October last year. My husband and I were wanting some chickens, so we gladly accepted and have had them ever since. The chickens she gave us are our 11 SLW, a BO roo, and the other 7 mixed hens.
Yesterday, as I was out working in the coop, I saw a car coming up the driveway, and assumed it was an egg customer. Wrong. It was the lady who had given us our chickens. Long story short, the problem that she and her husband were having was solved, they have reconciled and she wants her chickens back. :eek:
Now, this may sound awful, but I don't want to give them back. These chickens were GIVEN to us to keep, there was no stipulation that said, well, if I ever change my mind, I'd like them back, etc., etc...
We put a lot of time and money into those chickens, they weren't in the greatest shape when we got them. I told her I was attatched to them and really didn't want to give them back. Explained she never said anything about getting them back. She got mad, told me she was going to send her husband out to get them, by force if neccessary, and I told her we have several no trespassing signs, so if he did come, we'd call the police.
Now it's out of control. She flew out of here spraying gravel, hit the dog with the gravel, the kids were right there. She's nuts!
What would you guys do? Am I wrong?
I would contact your local pd and let them know what is going on, and the ruckus she caused, I would also tell her if she really wants them back, she can buy them back seeing how you have invested so much into them, but only if you decide thats the best thing to do, Im sorry to hear about this. I hope all turns out well for you.
Now you have probably seen why her husband was going to divorce her but with any luck she is the only crazy one and he is not worse than her.

Call the police and file a complaint now before the fireworks really start. The chickens are undisputedly yours and if they weren't in good shape when you got them there is no way I would consider giving them back to her even if you didn't keep them, they deserve a good home. Her's is obviously unstable no matter the reconsiliation of the moment.

And... be careful!

How long have you had them from her? I think you did the right thing. Be prepared for warfare from her if that's the way she handles things. Are they locked up at night? Ooohhh I'd be mad, (and worried too.) Talk to a lawyer.
Well, if you have decided you are going to keep them, then keep them. Unless she is going to swear under oath that you stole them from here, I don't think there is anything she can do to force you to give them back.

When you give someone something, it is not yours anymore, it is theirs! So, call the sheriff and explain your side of the story. Tell him you've been threatened and you hope it doesn't come to that, but want him to be aware, just in case something happens. And get him/her to confirm for you that there's no 'givsies backsies' law.

Something similar happened to a friend of mine recently. Someone had given her a dryer. Then that someone's new dryer broke. So they called up my friend and said "Hey, give us our dryer back." and she did, cause she's a wuss! (and she is signed up for this forum and will know if who I am talking about. Shame on you!!!)

As long as you aren't concerned about being on speaking terms with these folks, I'd tell 'em to take a long jump off a short pier. Good luck, tho.

We've had them about 7 months. She brought the 16 hens and 4 roos over and said she loved them, cried and said she was glad to see they had a good, permanent home.

The hens were all partially shredded from over-breeding. I had to pen up the 2 SLW roos to get the girls to heal up. Now the EE roo and BO roo are also in the batchelors pen, but that's another story.

I spoke with our attorney, and he said she has no legal rights to them because she abandoned them to us.

Our coop is about 80 feet behind the house, and is well barricaded. You'd have to come up our driveway, which is almost 1/4 mile long, drive past the house, and up through the yard to get to them. There's no way she could do it during the day, and the dog would alert us to anything at night.

Honestly, you'd have to be a little "off" to drive almost a half mile up into my property (the woods) to cause me trouble. We're posted all around, actually used 2 gross of Posted and No Trespassing signs. We have a lot of land.

I have some errands to do later this evening, and you'd better believe I'm locking our gate at the bottom of the drive when I go.

As long as nothing was ever said that it might be a temporary re-homing or that they might want them back if they get their problems worked out then the chickens are legally yours.

Call the friends that were involved in the original re-homing and make sure they are on same page as far as the chickens being given to you to keep.

Go out now and take pictures of all the chickens, the fencing and even your No Trespassing signs (I knew of a guy that stole the signs so he could go onto somebody's property saying they didn't have signs posted). Then call your local police/sheriff department and tell them what happened and what she said so that you can get their opinion but mostly to make them aware ahead of time that this lady threatened to take the chickens.

If she or her husband show up for the chickens they are trespassing and stealing so you need to call the police immediately.

She was most likely just blowing off steam because she was angry and her life is out of control right now. However, please be careful as there are so many deranged people in this world also and you never know what someone might do.

Good luck and God bless.

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