Farmer in Winter
Winter can be hard on everyone, and particularly so for our animal friends who have very little way of controlling their environments. If it's cold, it's cold - unless some compassionate human steps in to do something about it.
The peacocks here at Rock's Roost have it better than the chickens. The peacocks have both an enclosed building as well as an enclosed open-air pen, which they are able to roam between at will. I have put in a heat lamp in their building which remains on twenty-four hours a day - everyday - and offers respite from the dark nights and occasional bouts of bitter cold. The chickens are shut up at night in an old garage which protects them from the winter winds (and predators), but their building is not heated - so they have learned through necessity to snuggle.
Rosie is the undisputed Queen of the farm. She gets to live in the house, a privilege which she abuses dozens of times a day. Rosie does charge outside whenever the door is open, primarily to chase the chickens and to see what they are eating. My little dog has developed a fondness for hen scratch and tries to get her share before the hens hog it all.
Rosie shivers while outside, like a normal Chihuahua, but does not like wearing little doggie clothes. On days when it is cold, like today, we try to spend much of our day indoors - but Rosie still has enormous amounts of energy that need to be burned off. Recently she has established a race track around the living room sofa and coffee table. She will speed by doing six or eight laps in one direction, and then change it up and run six or eight laps in the other direction. When that gets old, she jumps onto the couch and races from end to end, across my lap, until she tires of that activity.
Then the Queen sleeps, often punctuating her slumber with little yips, as she endlessly chases chickens across her personal field of dreams, a place that is sunny and warm - and knee-deep in hen scratch!
Dream on, Your Highness. Enjoy your day!