Number One farm dog met a chicken last week. Our neighbor’s chicken. A gorgeous and girthy red layer, who unfortunately found her way out of the run.
Our good dog had never met a chicken before. We weren’t totally sure how she would find them.. I confess, in the back of my mind I had sun-kissed visions of the dog and a happy flock living merrily together. Radish would naturally take pride in herding the girls and protecting them from any sort of danger. And the birds would respect Radish as their loyal guardian and keeper, and as such they would stay where they belong and not make a mess of our vegetables. That’s not at all how it happened.
The bird never even had a chance. Jeremy and I gushed apologies, completely mortified. The owner was gracious and forgiving, suggesting that she was an old hen, not a very good layer. Yea, right. Her name was probably Blue Ribbon Layer or Holly’s Prize. We assured him we would replace her with a vigorous layer in the spring. Apologizing again, we -all three- tucked our tails and went home.
So our darling dog is a masked chicken killer. Feeling like horrible neighbors and poor dog owners, we took a walk down to the brewery to digest what had just happened. Crow Peak was having a tasting and naming of their new Special Bitter. It’s an excellent beer, and there were some great bitter-themed names suggested. A favorite was Valley Annex Bitter. Jeremy and I told the story of our afternoon, our bad dog, ..and the chicken. Our name suggestion was The Dog Bitter, as that’s what happened to her. She got bit.
Last night, in memory of Holly’s Prize, we had a Dog Bitter. And it was delicious. Thanks Crow Peak. It may not set things right, but it sure does make for a happy(ier) ending.