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Fox got chicken because of mistake by DH, am sad and cross

(10 Posts)
MrsPixieMoo Tue 21-Jan-14 10:21:23

We had five chickens in an Eglu cube. I love them, my DH is also fond of them, but isn't as attached to them as I am. We are moving house soon to a much smaller garden and he suggested rehoming the chickens before we move. I told him he would be rehomed first (pregnancy hormones, I got away with it) and he agreed the chickens could stay.

Every Monday evening I work late, getting home around 9pm, so he does a lot of the 'evening stuff' that I usually do, including cooking, putting DD (aged 2) to bed and giving her a bath and also making sure the chickens are shut in their house and that the run is secure.

I am pregnant and have had bad MS and he is about to be made redundant and we are moving house so he has a lot more on his mind than usual and has been doing a lot more at home (we both work full time).

Often on a Monday evening, I have asked 'are the chickens shut away' and it's always been yes. For some reason last night, I forgot to ask him.
Came home, ate, slept.

At 4am I could hear a chicken sounding distressed. I woke DH, asked if the chickens had been shut away and he told me he had and the noise was the central heating making a noise as the pipes heated up. I looked out of the window, saw a fox and went outside. DH followed. The fox ran away. It had one chicken in its mouth which it dropped and one chicken was dead on the lawn. The run and coop were both wide open.

I put back the chicken that the fox had but miraculously hadn't hurt and we assumed we had lost the other three. DH was very remorseful, apologetic, felt very guilty, said sorry and looked very sad. Neither of us went back to sleep. This morning I went to look for the other dead chickens and found them alive and hiding in the garden. They are all safely in the Eglu now and don't appear physically hurt.

I feel very sad that a chicken died because of a careless error and very cross with DH. I am also cross with myself and feel guilty for not checking myself or asking him when I got in. I'm posting on here because I just wanted to tell someone who will understand I am sad about the poor chicken and not just think I am a hormonal, pregnant ditz.

amyshellfish Tue 21-Jan-14 12:32:53

It was just a mistake - sad that a chicken got killed but your dh sounds like he had a lot to cope with and momentarily forgot. He didn't do it deliberately.

Hazelbrowneyes Tue 21-Jan-14 15:46:32

Aww, I'd be sad too. Try not to be too cross with yourself or your DH, I think it was a mistake and he's feeling sad too.

Give your chooks an extra cuddle today and dare I suggest give your DH one too? Sounds like you both need the cuddles x

SimLondon Tue 21-Jan-14 16:55:07

that is sad - but foxes can get chickens in the day just as they can at night, I'm glad your other three were ok.

Rooners Tue 21-Jan-14 17:00:12

It sounds like you are angry partly because you had had the rehoming convo before and so part of you is thinking he did it on purpose.

You need to separate these things out, it was most likely just a mistake.

Unless he is given to passive aggression!

I am sorry - I've lost a few to our fox, and built a walk in run after that as when a fox knows where to look, it won't stop coming.

I would be very cautious about letting them out in the day now. The fox is likely to return.

Can you fence off a bit of your new garden and cover it?

MrsPixieMoo Tue 21-Jan-14 17:23:16

Thank you all so much for your kind and helpful words. DH and I were at the hospital for a scan today so had a lot of time to chat. I totally understand it was a mistake, he's not at all PA and he felt awful, so I said I understood it was a mistake and it could have happened to either of us.

Thank you too for the advice not to let them out in the day. We usually free range them before and after work when we are home, and all weekend if we are in, but there have been a lot of times when I am not able to see the garden, eg in the shower in the morning and it has made me realise a fox could come at any time.

Rooners, what a wise lady. I couldn't work out why I was cross, and I think I had thought that he just didn't care. A day on I feel much more forgiving and ready to learn from this. Will also explore fencing off and covering, thank you for that idea.

Rooners Tue 21-Jan-14 17:43:58

Glad you are doing better xx

cookingenthusiast Wed 19-Feb-14 20:34:45

Shall we have a minute of silence for the poor chickens.

R.I.P chickens, it was unfair you had to die in this way and I wish you much happiness in the afterlife.

mommy268 Wed 19-Feb-14 20:36:47

Dear MrsPixieMoo,
I myself, a chicken farmer, am heartbroken to hear this tragic story. Ever since losing my dearest chicken of all, Maisy, in 2005, to a raging fox, i haven't been the same. I can understand completely where you are coming from when you say of your guilt and i am hear to say that you don't need to feel guilty you should feel guilty. You did absolutely everything wrong when you did not think to check whether your dear chickens were safe. I myself check that Frederick, Huffy, MaisyJunior & Eggbert are safe every night and i personally sleep with them in the pen just to be safe. However we all make mistakes, I hope you learn from yours and allow a happier futures for your remaining bundles of feathers.
The same cannot be said for DH, who should be got rid of immediately for this mistake which has caused the most tragic death of the greatest creature.

mommy268 Wed 19-Feb-14 20:38:21

PS. sarcastic ^ I do understand that the death of a pet can be really upsetting

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