True stories of a small flock of remarkable individuals -- and other critters.



Wednesday, June 24, 2015

DORRIE'S DEADLY DIVERSION



I didn’t think about Dorrie’s wandering because the ladies do like to scratch in those leaves at the shady edge of the yard.

But a few hours later, back at the coop, I found Dorrie standing hunched in the corner.  She was barely awake, and she was drooling.    
…..Drooling?  
This was especially odd.

It didn’t take long for me to guess what was wrong.  
My wild foxgloves were in glorious bloom.   
Dorrie must have eaten some of this highly toxic plant.

I left her in the care of her flock while I went to do a bit of quick research.  Back in the kitchen I Googled madly. I found some good info.  
It was interesting that the human symptoms of foxglove poisoning matched Dorrie’s symptoms.  Perhaps the treatment would be the same as well?   
I contacted some Facebook chicken-fanatic friends for advice.

Activated Charcoal was the consensus -- the same treatment as for humans.  Of course I didn’t have any activated charcoal lying around. I didn’t even know what it was, and by that time it was way too late at night to hop into the car and go hunting for it.

In desperation I brought Dorrie into the house and fed her a watery swill of ground-up charcoal from my fireplace.   I had no problem getting it down her throat as she was virtually catatonic.   

I put her to bed in the kitchen and hoped for the best.

The next morning Dorrie was no better.  The plain charcoal had had no effect.  I needed to find activated charcoal, quick.

My dear friend Beth, who normally sleeps in on Saturdays, actually answered her phone when I called at 7am, god-bless-her.   And, yes, as a matter of fact, she did have a packet of activated charcoal. 

I fetched the precious remedy from Beth, brought it back and mixed up the potion.

I squeezed about three tablespoons of the stuff into Dorrie.  
That seemed like a good amount to me.

We took a quick little selfie together,
and then I returned her to the coop.  

The flock gathered around Dorrie where she stood hunched, drowsy and drooling.
Now all we could do was wait.
.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  . 
But we didn’t wait long!

In only three hours, Dorrie was honest-to-goodness back from the dead, flitting around with the flock like nothing had ever happened!

Don’t you just love a miraculously happy ending? 

I let the girls out for some celebratory free-ranging.
This time, we stayed on the right side of the yard.  Plenty of weeds, none of them poisonous.
 .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  
And now I’m at the kitchen table eyeing this precious little packet of activated charcoal, this magical elixir…
Maybe I’ll sprinkle some on my toast. 
I wonder how it would taste in my coffee…..


34 comments:

  1. Glad Dorrie is ok! I love the selfie - she looks so cute...even if she is drunk on foxglove.

    ReplyDelete
  2. This is the kind of Action Adventure story I like... one with a happy ending!

    ReplyDelete
  3. Our little piglet got into some slug bait and I credit activated charcoal with saving his life too. Good stuff to have around!

    ReplyDelete
  4. OMG, how scary. I supposed I need to add some activated charcoal to my chicken first aid kit.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Just in case you need it again, activated charcoal is used in fish tank filters - so you'll easily be able to find it a pet/fish stores. The other quick place to find it is in drinking water filters. If you have one of those Brita water pitchers, you could steal its filter and crack it open - there will be activated charcoal inside.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Maggie, that's so good to know. I called the 24-hour supermarket and asked if they had activated charcoal. The told me they didn't. Now I know I can always pick it up in a Brita filter there!

      Delete
    2. Maggie,
      That is a wonderful tip to tuck away! I have a Brita water pitcher, of course.

      Delete
  6. So glad you both survived this.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Yayyy Dorrie. Lauren I keep activated charcoal in my cabinet at all times. You saved one of your Chicks Again... Great to see your active Blog Again. Way to go.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Laurie RettingerJune 24, 2015 at 6:45 PM

    Actually, Nature's Way makes an activated charcoal capsule and I've always been able to find it at our local CVS or Walgreens - white bottle with a green cap on top. Wouldn't be without it for tummy aches that might be food related, and it's very easy to take it this way! So happy to hear your sweet girl recovered!!

    ReplyDelete
  9. Thank goodness, I've grown rather attached to her. Glad you are back!!

    ReplyDelete
  10. A happy ending! Yay, Dorrie! <3

    ReplyDelete
  11. Oh my goodness! So pleased she recovered xx

    ReplyDelete
  12. Always excited to see a post from you and now one with a happy ending and very good advice too. What a win, win, win event. Thank you.

    ReplyDelete
  13. In a pinch, epsom salts also detoxifies. I used it years ago when Buffy got into the vetch. Glad to hear that Dorrie recovered!

    ReplyDelete
  14. I am so excited to learn about activated charcoal... I had no idea. Your blogs are fun to read AND they are making me a smarter and better chicken momma. Love to you and all your flock <3

    ReplyDelete
  15. Great post with a happy ending. I actually think your fireplace ash would have worked, but she probably would have needed a far greater amount. Great suggestions also about the Brita water filters having it - also coffee machine filters have it in them too. In a pinch blackstrap molasses is also a detoxifier and can help flush toxins. Good quick thinking on your part Lauren!

    ReplyDelete
  16. More Posts Please. Reading about your Flock goes great with morning coffee. Your passion is INSPIRING! Thank You

    ReplyDelete
  17. Whew! Glad that she is doing well and thanks for the health care that Dorrie provided for all of us chicken lovers!

    ReplyDelete
  18. Love this!!! Love the pictures!! LOVE the happy ending or beginning.........just love it! 👍 😍

    ReplyDelete
  19. So glad that Dorrie is okay and that she was able to hang in there until you could get the activated charcoal from your friend! A lesson for us all....you never know when you will need some activated charcoal!! :-)

    ReplyDelete
  20. You can brush your teeth with it for very white teeth, believe it or not!! Glad your baby is ok!

    ReplyDelete
  21. Another tip; in a pinch, you can use the burnt scrapings of burnt toast. The charred bits can also absorb toxins. So glad your Chickey Baby is OK!

    ReplyDelete
  22. So good to hear from you again and to have a happy ending. Good to know about activated charcoal too.

    ReplyDelete
  23. Hurray!!! Dorrie came back from the dead!!! *giggle* So glad she made it through this, bless her heart. No more foxgloves for you, girl.

    ReplyDelete
  24. Lauren....Great story. I put activated charcoal on my shopping list. I guess it's something we all might need someday for ourselves or our pets. Who Knew?
    Thanks....xo, Rosemary

    ReplyDelete
  25. What a delightful blog. I love chickens! ....Well I've never had any but like them in a graphic way. Met Lisa G. today with my favorite Chicken necklace on...of course your name and blog came up! Sweet story

    ReplyDelete
  26. this was a such a fabulous broccoli yoghurt and its recipe is really simple i have to save this page for making this recipe. thanks. online food delivery restaurant

    ReplyDelete
  27. I like your blog, chicken, drawing, mayhem, broodiness, oh my

    ReplyDelete
  28. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    ReplyDelete