If you save a life, are you responsible for it?

Benny and Tikka at 2 months
Benny and Tikka at 2 months

As previously reported, Ugly Betty the chick has become Handsome Benny the rooster … and therein lies the problem. You see, DH doesn’t like roosters—not their crowing, not their aggressiveness, not their love life. And yet, he rescued Benny and brought him home. Can you give away a creature that you rescued, or are you responsible for him?

I solved the crowing problem by putting Benny in the hospital box at night, with a towel over it so he doesn’t see the light strengthening and announce the new day to the whole neighborhood. Since he grew up in a hospital box (a wire cage with hay to scratch in, and food and water) he doesn’t mind this a bit. He has his own food and life is good until I let him out in the morning.

But the love life, ouch. In the past we’ve had heavy-breed roos who would climb on board a hen and literally flatten her. Cocoa Puff even had neurological damage and couldn’t walk for weeks. She pushed herself around with her wings and it was heartbreaking. This is my tenderhearted DH’s biggest fear. He can’t stand the thought of any of the girls being hurt.

So far, though, the girls are handling Benny’s attempts at l’amour with cranky efficiency. Touch me, buster, and I’ll whack you so hard you’ll see stars. It seems to work, especially since Benny is #13 of 13 in the pecking order. That’s a lot of whacks. And he’s a Leghorn, which means he’s slender and light, and unlikely to damage anything except one’s dignity.

Now I just have to convince DH to let him stay ….


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