Release the Chicks to a Sanctuary
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There are currently six young chickens confined in a small, dangerous, homemade coop on a busy street here on Capitol Hill. The coop was built with wood slats as the substrate (floor) and a leg break and/or predator attack are imminent. Additionally, there are large openings in multiple places where a raccoon could easily reach in and grab a chicken. These young birds have no opportunities to do what comes natural to them, like dustbathe and scratch for bugs. They are not allowed any time outside of this small, filthy coop. I have been watching the chickens for weeks and, during the hot weather, I have witnessed them open mouth breathing (an indication that they are suffering heat exhaustion).
Locals have tried to convince the owner to surrender the birds. The clinic’s owner stated that he felt he was “providing a service to the community” by providing eggs. However:
** The coop is dangerous as there are multiple holes and gaps where a raccoon could reach in
** The coop floor is not predator proof and because it’s not a solid surface a broken leg is inevitable
** There is no way to effectively clean the slats and consequently the birds are standing in their own feces 24/7
** There is no fan, mister, or cold and/or frozen fruit being offered during high temps
** The chickens are being denied their natural instincts to scratch in the dirt and dustbathe (crucial to their overall health)
** They are “on display” on a busy street where children and dogs have been seen banging on and lunging at the coop
** There is feces in the driveway, on the sidewalk, and in the dirt near their two tomato plants (all of these are potential human health issues - especially young children who like to put everything in their mouths and are notoriously unreliable "hand washers")
Although, we are appreciative of their attempts to support the community, we offer alternative ways to do so by:
** Building a community vegetable garden in the same spot as the current coop
** Provide free or low cost dog and cat spay/neuter services to low income families in the area
Please ask them to allow the chickens to be rehomed to a local sanctuary (we have one lined up) where they will have access to grass, natural shade, and a predator proof coop.
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