What Are You, Chicken?

22 Apr

Lucy: One Tough Chick

There are chickens in the neighborhood. I don’t know where they are, or even which house is hosting them, but I can hear them cluck-clucking when I stand in our backyard. I’m mildly curious as to why someone has chickens and mildly concerned that they’re being kept in the backyard of a semi-suburban home and not on a nice farm somewhere. But as I’m only mildly anything, the chickens haven’t really bothered me too much.

Lucy, on the other hand, is losing it.

Lucy is one of our dogs. She’s a talking dog and a haiku poet, but she’s also a wannabe huntress. She chases birds with all the gusto of a creature that doesn’t know that birds can fly. She let’s squirrels know, in no uncertain terms, that they are not welcome. She pounces on flies and blades of grass with every ounce of her seven-ish pounds. And she absolutely cannot figure out the clucking. She doesn’t know where it’s coming from and, since I highly doubt she’s ever seen a chicken, she doesn’t know what sort of animal is responsible for the noise. The poor thing spent most of yesterday afternoon running back and forth on one side of the yard, her little head darting right and left, and barking frantically. Ironically, she looked like a chicken with its head cut off. After a while she sniffed the whole perimeter of the yard, came up fowl-less, and settled down near the fence to cry forlornly whenever she heard a cluck and look at me meaningfully. Can’t you hear that? Alien noise!! Why are you just sitting there?

My grandma says I’m getting boring because the only thing I talk about is the dogs. Well, it just happens that my dogs are fascinating and adorable and full of character. And when you’ve been spending as much time at home as I have, you end up mimicking Jane Goodall and collecting dog stories. Besides, I’d argue that the only things I talk about is my dogs and my grandma (the proof is in the pudding, er, blog posts)…but then, she probably wouldn’t think that was as boring. Anyway, the reason why I was so interested in Lucy’s confusion is because I sympathize. It must be distressing to know that something new and strange is nearby, but not know exactly where or what it is. For all she knows, that clucking is coming from a tyrannosaurus rex-sized foe. (Actually, I seem to remember that chickens are descended from dinosaurs–it’s amazing what information the brain keeps–so maybe that’s not such a stretch.) If you think about it, Lucy’s got the right idea when it comes to the chickens. Instead of being scared, she’s itching to find the little mother cluckers. She seems genuinely appalled that I am content to sit back, rather than investigate the noise. As someone who has screwed up fight or flight instincts, I find it encouraging. Yeah, that’s right, I’m finding admirable qualities in my dog.

Oh, and stay tuned for unrelated-to-dogs posts. Not that I agree with grandma (at least not completely), but I don’t want my words to get repetitive or predictable or (oh my dog) uninteresting. In the meantime, I think I’ll go watch Lucy come to terms with the world.


10 Responses to “What Are You, Chicken?”

  1. twin April 22, 2011 at 8:58 pm #

    I don’t think I’ve told you recently how much I love your blog, so here you are: I love your blog! Your posts always make me smile. 🙂
    What’s with the chickens though? That’s weird! We had turkeys in our yard recently! My mom sent me a picture… 5 huge turkeys just hanging out on our fence. hahaha
    Love you!
    Keep writing!!

    • Oh My Words! April 25, 2011 at 1:42 pm #

      YAY! You commented and you love my words! I absolutely LIVE to make my original reader smile. And, of course, LOVE YA TOO

      Thank Dog we don’t have turkeys because chances are Lucy would go on the attack. I assume yours were wild turkeys? There’s a sort of-farm near us that has turkeys but they’ve never jumped ship and left their home.

  2. Jill Swenson April 23, 2011 at 6:05 am #

    I have a dog named Lucy too. She’s a Dalmatian and all birds beware. Not just chickens, but the turkeys, geese and ducks take cover. Lucy will go outside on a spring morning, stick her nose in the air and take off. She hunts down their nests and raids them for the yummy eggs.

    • Oh My Words! April 25, 2011 at 1:44 pm #

      Oh dear, I’m glad my Lucy isn’t as enterprising as yours 🙂 She’s pretty much an unsuccessful hunter, but that doesn’t stop her!

  3. shreejacob April 23, 2011 at 6:59 am #

    I love dogs! I don’t think talking about your dogs is boring! I did think it was a little weird when my parents start talking about ours as if they were little kids…I think they have been deprived of grandchildren, but you know…

    “Mother cluckers” = awesome! 😉

    • Oh My Words! April 25, 2011 at 1:49 pm #

      Oh good! I’m glad you like the dog stories. That’s sweet that your parents care about your dogs that much. Reminds me of the book My Granddaughter Has Fleas 🙂

  4. WobblyWords April 23, 2011 at 3:15 pm #

    mother cluckers 🙂

  5. Ash April 23, 2011 at 5:56 pm #

    Chickens are actually pretty common in the suburbs. They’re very easy to raise if you’re only using them for eggs and they take up little space. My dog freaks out at noises that don’t exist so you’re lucky your dog actually pays attention to real noises. 🙂

  6. Jazz April 25, 2011 at 6:08 am #

    Seeing Lucy’s size, a chicken probably would seem tyrannosaurus sized to her.


  1. Dogs Who Heal and English Majors Who Wield Needles « Oh My Words! - June 20, 2011

    […] are so loving and so loveable. Lucy is a clown with a big personality (you might recall that she doesn’t like chickens) and it’s easy to be drawn in by her big eyes and long tongue. Molly, however, has a special spot […]

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