A chicken named Mabel has taken its love of extreme sports to the max, and has adopted a litter of Rottweiler puppies. This it did after losing a fight with a horse that resulted in it injuring its foot, causing its owners to allow it to sleep inside the house – where it found the puppies.
Mabel, and her puppies, live on a farm in Shrewsbury. Mabel keeps her new charges warm by ‘sitting’ on them while they are asleep in her basket. Mabel is dicing with death because the puppies aren’t actually orphans; they have a mother named Nettle. Mable waits for Nettle to leave them before entering their basket and sitting on them.
The owners of the courageous chicken, and the Rottweiler puppies, are Ros and Edward Tate.
Edward Tate explains the bizarre situation:
Mabel was hatched here about a year ago. She would have gone onto someone’s dinner plate but we saved her and brought her into the house.
Unfortunately, she got into an accident with a horse, which accidentally trod on her foot. Because of that, she gets terribly cold during the winter so we decided to bring her into the house.
And then we had puppies about three weeks ago. Mabel observed Nettle’s behaviour and, as soon as there was a chance, she hopped into the dog basket to roost on the pups. She keeps them and herself warm, while Nettle is outside on the yard.
It seems that Mabel isn’t at all concerned that Nettle could be a protective mother, as most dogs are with their pups. Mabel is determined to help out, regardless of the risks to her own personal safety.
It was within a week Mabel was jumping in the box with them and brooding over them. She took to them like they were her own chicks.
Nettle was a bit startled to say the least – but she didn’t mind too much eventually. She’s happy to have a helping pair of wings.
We were amazed when we first it happen – my 13-year-old daughter first saw it happen and called us to come and have a look. And when we saw Mabel here roosting on the pups – we just laughed.
We’re hoping that soon Mabel will have her own chicks to look after but I don’t think Nettle will be returning the favour when that happens.
A lot of dogs love chicken, but Mabel and the puppies are taking this love to extremes.