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Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Trimming the Roosters Toe Nails

My parent in-laws came out for a nice friendly visit. While they were here, my husband took them out to see the new poultry we had acquired. What's wrong with that rooster, my father-in-law asked. On closer inspection we saw that he had a piece of string wrapped around his spur, cutting into it. As much as that rooster hates us, we just couldn’t stand to see it suffer.

I watched in amusement as my husband chased him around until he could be cornered and trapped. My husband began to unwrap the string, and just as he was about to release the rooster, it pecked him and spurred my husband's calf. And you thought I could make sailors a couple states over blush!

Vengeance is mine sayth the husband, as he was relentlessly teased by his father. A man that once ran a medium sized chicken flock. My husband suck it up and took it like a man, yet there was that glimmer in his eye that warned me that I was about to get hurt myself.

As soon as the parental units left, it was decided that we must tend to the rooster, clean his wound, clip a wing and trim some nails. Good for you, have a blast...tell me all about it when your finished. Maybe I shouldn't be sarcastic, I seem to get into more trouble whenever I open my mouth. I was ordered {he wasn't in a good mood} to look through the homesteading books to see how to go about doing such things. There wasn't too much info on tending to a spur wound, we already knew how to trim a wing, and the books said to use small clippers, scissors or dog nail trimmers on the talons.

I brought out with me some peroxide, a ratty towel and dog nail clippers, only to find my husband and the rooster in a old west style show down. They were eyeing each other to the death. I handed the towel to my husband, as I kept an eye an that rooster myself. It loathes me. I have looked through the homesteading books to see how one should deal with a scornful rooster. Kill them. What an answer...I have the distinct feeling that the people that wrote these books, don't put up with much.

With towel in hand, the chase was on. I watched with much amusement as my husband dove and raced after the bird. Once cornered, the towel was dropped and the rooster relaxed in his artificial darkness. My turn. I looked closely at the spur wound. The string had made a clean cut and took the spur off. I poured a little peroxide on it, temporarily reviving the rooster from it's torpor, I screamed in response. I am a wuss.

Next I {yes I not we} trimmed the nails. I have never done this! How far up!?! What if it bleeds? I don't want to hurt the son of a scratcher! Stop telling me how to do it! How do I do this? First couple of nails went smoothly. I cut only the clear part, leaving the discolored part of the nail, it was obvious that there was a vein in it. Soon I cut too deep {not a surprise} IT'S BLEEDING! My husband attempted to reassure me as he took the edge of the towel to put some pressure on the wound. I poured a little peroxide on it, and hoped for the best. If only I could have placed a Pokemon band-aid on it.

The wing was simple, I had seen my husband do it to the geese. I usually hold the geese, as the gander was imprinted on me, and goose realizes she is not to bite the hand that feeds her. They loath my husband. It's nice not to be the only one hated. Gander is easy to get a hold of, he will allow me to pick him up, then he sets about cleaning me and talking up a pleasant storm while my husband pulls out the ganders wing and trims them down. The goose on the other hand, takes some corralling, I have to allow her to threaten me, then grab her by the neck, gently pulling her under my arm and holding her like a football.

The rooster still had a towel over his head, and my husband partially laying down on him. I clipped the feathers of one wing. As soon as we had finished, I stepped back and my husband released him from the imprisonment. He is a cocky cock, shook and ruffled his feathers, gave us a menacing death glance, strutted a few feet, then turned and was on us in a flash. Screaming and cursing ensued. But what does one expect after trying to be loving and caring towards a spiteful creature?

We manage to escape with little injury.

In other news, we ordered a new batch of chicks. 10 Americanas, 10 Black Australorps, and 5 Black Stars, they should be here next week. I did order all females.


Andrew said...

Sounds almost like some of the procedures that Steve the Crocodile Hunter has to go through when he subdues a croc! I had no idea it would be that difficult to work with poultry.
To Love, Honor and Dismay

KF-in-Georgia said...

Pet stores sell a product called KwikStop that you can put on a bleeding nail. (Works for dogs, and they sell the same stuff for use on parrots.)

It's fairly expensive, though. Since you're mostly just trying to get the bleeding to stop, try flour or cornstarch on the wound to make the blood clot.

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