Monday, November 8, 2010

And Dudley Comes Home to Roost

One day this past summer I was awakened by the sounds of a rooster crowing.  Okay, so living in the country as we do, we often heard this rooster crowing of a morning, but this time it sounded as if it were actually under our window singing its head off.  It was a happy rooster, happy to have a voice, happy to flap it's wings, happy to be alive.  As we discovered  later that same day , it's gladness was the latter more than the former.  Our neighbors, Tara and Sam (he's Greek, so can't pronounce the last name much less spell it,  therefore I won't trouble you with the minor details) have a farm complete with horses and cows, chickens and at one time even a goat, etc...and once they had plenty of barnyard cats too,  but seems they've all migrated our way.  So, as I've rambled way off the subject here,we'll get back to the rooster crowing beneath my window.  Well, since he was sitting on the porch railing greeting the sun and the new day with a fervor I've hardly ever heard before, I had to get up and pull back the curtain to check.  And yes, there he was.  A beauty of a rooster, all luscious reds and bark browns, blacks of several different depths and he had an attitude.  Later that day we discovered that he also had a number of tail feathers missing from his considerable plume.  I asked Tara that evening if she was missing a member of their  menagerie.  Seems she was missing quite a few.  Her doberman had gotten loose and gone on a chicken killing spree that defies description.  The rooster of the flock was lucky to escape with the few tail feathers he had left attached to his backside.  He had made a hasty departure through the woods to seek asylum(looney bin?) with us.  I'm not sure if he figured the myriad cats were a protection from  or a distraction for the dog.  But he made it safely here, and here he stays.

Now, I know having a rooster in residence  isn't much of a big deal for a lot of people.  It's not much of a big deal for us either since luckily we have plenty of corn and seed on hand to feed the squirrels guineas and song birds.  But the oddest thing of all is the rooster much prefers cat food.  And he prefers to eat the cat food out of the cat food dishes.  And he prefers to eat it with the cats.  The first time I saw Dudley (as we have since named him) eating with the cats I could only stand and watch.  That he tolerated the cats was not what amazed me.  That they tolerated him as a dinner companion rather than dinner...now that really got my attention.  The first time he raced me to the food dish (starting at a dead run from 1/2 an acre away, he beat me handily) made me laugh out loud.  I've never seen a rooster running with cats before.  Away from them, yes, with them no.  This has been going on for months now.  I think it's safe to say that Tara and Sam no longer have a rooster.  Their Guineas (hens) claimed us as family at roughly the same time.  The guineas only capture Dudley's attention once in a while at which time he will condescend to eat a morsal or two of corn with them.  But mostly, he likes the cats. 

Now that fall is upon us Dudley goes to roost on the porch railing at around 5 pm each evening.  He prefers it if we will kindly  not be banging in out of the front door from 5 on.  He needs his rest.  He begins his sympony to dawn somewhere roughly between 3 am and 0dark30.   I've asked Craig, our neighbor on the other side to stop referencing dumplings whenever he sees Dudley.  It's giving him a complex.

58 comments:

Jeni said...

I'm loving this post, Sandy! Isn't it neat when you see two animals together that a rather unlikely friends, though?
We have a dog -Sammy - a little mutt with an appearance much like Benji -and a tomcat, Fluffnuts. Fluffnuts is a big orange and white cat, very handsome and was part of a litter the Mama cat we used to have had about two years ago this fall. When we acquired Sammy, who is extremely friendly to all people, as well as to other animals, Sam's immediate goal was to make friends with the Mama and her kittens although that was often a very painful experience for him. However, by the time the kittens were old enough to leave this home, he had succeeded in making friends with Fluffnuts -who we decided we couldn't part with then too. Now, the two of them often play together, chase each other around the house and, because Fluffnuts is an indoor and outdoor cat, roams around all over outside, he also looks forward to being outside when Sammy gets to go out on his leash for a walk and Fluffer will lay in wait, hiding under cars, behind trees, you name it, and when Sammy walks by, the cat will then pounce on him! Quite the pair those two are, for sure!

Akelamalu said...

It's good that all your animals get on well! :)

Donna said...

Oh No...bad thing for dogs to kill chickens! We lived on a farm when I was a kid and we had chickens. One day one of our dogs did the same thing...went on a Spree...The old area farmers told Dad he'd HAVE to stop that behavior Immediately...how? Beat the dog with a dead chicken... Dad did NOT want to do it but at that point, he didn't know what else to do. Once a dog gets a taste for killing chickens, it does Not stop. He did as he was told and surprisingly, it worked! The dog NEVER again even came Close to a chicken...In fact, he went out of his way to avoid them.
You might share this with Neighbor. As in our case, chickens meant money...
hughugs

Kathy's Klothesline said...

I love this tale of Dudley and how he came to live with you and the cats. I had pet chickens when I was a youngster. They were given to me by my Grandmother. Seems she had accidentally stepped on three little chicks and thought they would surely die. One of the hens had a broken leg that I splinted. The other hen and rooster were in a little better shape and I managed to nurse them all back to health. Rebecca and Cynthia (the hens) lived long lives and laid many eggs that I was happy to eat. My rooster, Herbert, was a gorgeous creature, proudly displaying his colorful plumage. He was also a bit cocky and downright mean. The first time he spurred me I was devastated and cried. He spurred my dad and he kicked him to let him know he would not be spurring him again. Although I warned Herbert and tried to be the one to feed the chickens every day, that fateful day came when my mother went into the chicken yard to spread feed ........ Herbert spurred her and just like the red queen, she proclaimed "Off with his head!" I did not eat the chicken and dumplings that night.

Suldog said...

That's a really cool story. The cats are amazingly sanguine about this. I would think they'd be pissed for a number of reasons.

Carver said...

Great post Sandy. I'm so glad the rooster found safety at your house. I've seen dogs attack chickens and it isn't pretty.

Love Bears All Things said...

I loved both posts! The one about the rooster and the reunion one. I have a recipe for Banana Split Cake but it is a pound cake baked in a tube pan...This one does sound sinful.
Mama Bear

Brian Miller said...

hehe. when we lived in FL we had a rooster that would come see us...only on saturday mornings...really early...i think he gave me a complex...smiles. so cute about the cat food!

aims said...

Sandi - we NEED a picture of this! Truly! This is one of those things that goes viral in seconds!!

The 3am wake up call I could easily do without though.

CatHerder said...

i miss the roosters in the country...11 years ago i traded it back for sirens and smog..anyway..you asked abour the feral house. We only have ONE FERAL left. The rest were placed or i kept the last 3...hubby basicly built a doghouse on legs so its up off the ground..he is going to put insulation in it, and tack up 'space blankets' that radiate body heat...it will have a linoleum floor for easy cleaning and be lined with hay...anything made out of material wicks the cold and makes it wet. this is the last cat, and he does not want to be trapped, though he will follow me to is dish, i can not touch him he bites..i will eventually have to bite the bullet and force trap him..i have been giving him his worming meds and antibiotics in his food, but he needs neutered..he is OLD! I QUIT the vet about a month ago but the doc still does favors for me...this one looks like he might wind up being a big favor this winter lol

Hilary said...

Wonderful story and reminiscent of my sister's days with Dork, a chicken which lived out its days at her place. It was one of three baby chicks which she was given one spring.

My sister is a real cat person and one of the ugliest, but sweetest cats I've ever known was Rugrat. Ruggy and Dork didn't necessarily eat together, but they hung out together all the time. They'd go for walks, rest and even play together. If Ruggy would run, so would Dork. They were an amazing pair.

Dork died within weeks after beautiful/ugly Ruggy was fatally wounded by a car.

Finding Pam said...

When we use to have chickens at our former home, one of my cats loved the chickens. Often I would find him inside the chickens area asleep in a nesting hole. I guess he kept the snakes at bay.

My cats had a screened in back porch with a kitty doo, once a possum came through and ate the cat food.

I love animals and sometimes they do the coolest thing. I hope your Rooster finds a safer place to nest. You could throw him up in the trees at night to keep hime safe.

Merisi said...

Lucky Dudley,
finding refuge at a sweet home like yours, and cat food and cat friends, what more can a refugee hope for?
I grew up with hens and a rooster, and I am sure you will get used to the racket in the morning. Soon you'll sleep right through it!
Hugs,
M.

Kat said...

What, no pictures of Dudley? You my friend must show us your (and the cats) new friend.

Hugs and much love,
Kat

david mcmahon said...

Quick, Sandi - put Dudley on a plane to Melbourne. The sky is fairly light here by about 5.15/5.30 am ... and there is so much to crow about in this weather!

Mickle in NZ said...

If a rooster approached Zebby's bowls my darling wussy-cat would run to me for rescue! What a lovely outcome for Dudley.

TaraLarsenChang said...

Hi Sandi! It was good to see you (I'm under deadline again and am being dismal at getting to people's blogs). Love this post. :-) My chickens stalk my cat if she starts to eye them too closely (they've even been known to take after my enormous dog if they think he's invading their territory a bit too much). They are a hoot to watch. I'm glad you're enjoying your adoptive rooster. :-)

Zuzana said...

Such an entertaining story, I would love to see a picture of Dudley, eating and running with the cats.;) Animals and nature itself is a constant source of magic.;)
xo

imbeingheldhostage said...

I think this is awesome! Maybe the cats and Dudley are conspiring to get rid of the Doberman-- that's the explanation for the food sharing. It's a team-building exercise. :-)

Shrinky said...

Oh, I've missed my visits here! What a great post, Sandy, I love the way you write. And that Dudley? The cats aren't stoopid, word must have reached them he's already faced down a Doberman, they know when best to keep the peace!

Karen M said...

What a lovely story! We definitely need pictures of Dudley & his friendly cats.

Lee said...

LOL And you menagerie grows! Can't stop laughing. :-D Wonderful story, Sandi! I'm going to laugh about this one all morning long. Sorry, Dudley, I just can't stop! And no, I'm not laughing at you, well, not much any way.

Cheers,
Lee

Word verification was gaterie, when you getting one of those? LOL

Gill - That British Woman said...

what a super post Sandi, it made me chuckle.......it's funny how animals rule the roost, so to speak, in all our households!!

Gill in Canada

NeereAnDear said...

Girl it is so so sooooo good to hear from you!! Looks like you made up for lost time... I had to go back and try to read all the new posts... had been checking forever and gave up for a bit and then you go and post a ton of them after I quit LOL ... go figure...

Love the rooster ... not sure I would want one waking my butt up at 3 am ... ugghhh ... sounds like he's a keeper though poor baby ... glad to hear he survived ...

As you can see I moved... 10 acres of land and excited about it .... been terribly busy putitng the house together ... but got away from the ahem.. "nutty" neighbor and the change in me has been amazing..

missed your writing... welcome back!!

LOTS OF HUGS
JO

Cass @ That Old House said...

Oh Sandi, how funny!
Dudley sounds a real character; aren't animals amazing. My Mom had a small chicken farm for awhile, and her dog used to like to cuddle with the chickens. She would find the dog, Carlo, cradling a terrified chicken in his paws, napping. The chickens never got used to it, but Carlo loved it.

thanks for visiting That Old House from BJs (whom I love!). I laughed at your apples looking like a Granny -- My mom used to say as she got older that she was starting to look like an Apple Doll.
Hope you make the tart and enjoy it!
Cass

Gaston Studio said...

Great post Sandie! And I love that you've inherited these animals by default.

BTW, I know I've told you before but I have to say it again... I more than love your photo header. Every time I open up your blog and see it, I'm ready to dive into that lone road and seek out what's at the end of that canopied path. It's driving me crazy to know!

Coffee Bean said...

LOVE IT!!! I would love to hear a rooster crowing in the morning... at a normal hour, of course. LOL!

Lynn@ The Vintage Nest said...

Hey Sandi, So happy to have you stop by. Have missed you. Is Dudley nice? We had our rooster Snow and he was one gorgeous rooster. He loved the cat and the dog and his hens but unfortunately he didn't love me. Even though I had raised him from a tiny thing along with the chicks, when he grew he saw me a s threat and decided the chickens only had one master and that was him! He started going after me every time I went into the back yard. I tried my best to let him know he was the king of the roost but nothing worked. So we had to let him go but he lives on a farm now and is very happy. I even go to visit him every now and then. ....Always love your stories. :)

Strawberry Jam Anne said...

How marvellous - I would love to see Dudley running with your cats and eating out of their dishes. Could you not take a video of it for us - priceless. A x

SandyCarlson said...

Animals know how to do it. I am glad he's getting on with the cats. Barnyard fusion cuisine?

SY said...

the closest a rooster has ever come to being in my home is in my television viva Babe...

and also on my computer via this post

CatHerder said...

i left the chix recipe on my blog for you!

Tee aka The Diva's Thoughts said...

What a funny and cute story. You should get a video of Dudely eating with the cats and post it here and on Youtube. I bet you it would go viral!

gaelikaa said...

I've never heard of a bird eating cat food before....

Frank Baron said...

Seems to me that Dudley (and the rest of your menagerie) realize that you're a special person. Not everyone so quickly earns an animal's trust. You've got a good heart to go along with your excellent story-telling skills.

merry weather said...

He is very lucky to have been adopted by you - and I just love that you've called him Dudley!

Clearly animals feel safe at your place. Safe enough to forget the "rules" of nature even. That suggests you're a gentle leader I reckon..

:-)

NitWit1 said...

Dudley is lucky dude to escape a Doberman!. And I'd get higher than a portch rail after that experience. I've seen cats and dogs companions but never rooster and cats.

Brenda Eason said...

I have really missed you girl.
Brenda

Jules~ said...

Thank you so much for your prayers and understanding comments ?Sandi. You are a blessing.

It cracks me up that the cat let Dudley eat with them. Simply amazing.

Have a blessed day.

Denise said...

I miss my country days with Mom and Dad and Grand mom.. I loved the animals and especially the chickens and the big rooster! I loved this story and you never know when you will find a "sign" of the Father God in the creatures HE created. Thanks for sharing and I am so glad to be back out blogging! I have so missed each and every one of you.... Seems I have been gone for years!

Have a happy Sunday

i beati said...

so much fun I'm needing a book just for me this time..sandy

Judy ~ My Front Porch said...

I'm smiling...as I think of Dudley sharing his plate with the cats...and picturing you in a race with a rooster! I see a Dudley series coming sown the pike.

San said...

Does Dudley eat Fancy Feast?

Bronwyn, said...

I love your banner photo, Sandy, reminds me of Snow White - where is it?

Rick said...

A rooster who prefers cat food is really something to write about. There's a story there waiting to be written!

San said...

Happy Thanksgiving, retroactively, Sandi.

Kat said...

Hi sweet friend! Where are you? I don't like this business of you disappearing all the time! I'm tapping my foot and pointing my finger when I say that too. Okay...got my message?!

Hope your Thanksgiving was wonderful and all is good.

I'm busy decorating for Christmas, but I'm taking plenty of breaks to visit my blog friends. wink, wink

Hugs,
Kat

Jules~ said...

Stopping by this morning to say hi and hoping you are doing well.

God bless you and your day.

Lynne said...

Sounds as though he's made himself at home! Enjoyed reading about him.

Jules~ said...

Stopping by this morning to wish you a blessed and wonderful day today. I pray all is going well for you and your family.

Anna said...

Sandi wanted to wish you happy holiday season. Let it be filled with love and peace. Wishing also good health, and lots of happiness. Thank you for lovely posts this year, and your kind visit over my side. Cheers. Anna :) PS Hope all is well.

merry weather said...

Radioing to say:

Very best Christmas Wishes to you and yours Sandi.

And thanks for all the fun - friends are priceless -

Hugs to you from across the ocean. X

Donna said...

Merry Christmas sweet friend!!
hughugs

Merisi said...

I hope you are enjoying a warm and cozy Christmas with your family!
hugs,
M.

Anya said...

Happy New Year!!
We wish you a joyful life
full of healthy, happiness and pleasure :)

Hugs Love Anya

Kareltje =^.^=

Betsie =(^.^)=

SandyCarlson said...

Always you take me there and make me smile out loud.

God bless your 2011.

Deb said...

Just wanted to stop in to wish you a Happy New Year. I also have been MIA for a while ~ life has been nothing short of a roller coaster ride. Looking forward to reconnecting with all of my blogging friends in 2011. Take care.

D said...

Just stopped by as I was surfing blogs. Wanted to say I really enjoyed reading your posts. Stop by sometime and say hello.

Happy New Year! May your 2011 be filled with many successes and much happiness!

p.s.
The music wasn't bad either!

D