Collared - Baltimore Sun readers' pets [Pictures]
TELL US ABOUT YOUR PET: We're interested in cats and dogs, but also hamsters, hedgehogs, turtles, horses, chickens -- the whole pet gamut.
Email the following information to firstname.lastname@example.org: pet name, owner name, how you met, pet's age, hometown, breed (or best guess), favorite activity, favorite food, funniest moment or sweetest story. Feel free to add your own creative categories, too -- anything that will shine a light on your pet.
• Unleashed: a blog for animals and the people who love them
Image 111 of 179
Rosie the chicken( Christopher T. Assaf, Baltimore Sun photo / September 17, 2013 )
Rosie the Barred rock hen came to live in her Owings Mills coop along with Estelle, a sex-link hen (a variety whose gender can be determined at birth), and Helen, a silver laced wyandotte hen, in June, when Adam Davis decided keeping chickens was a good idea. Adam and his brother, Eli, are students at the University of Maryland, College Park and when they returned to school, the chicken-keeping fell to their parents, Sally and Ron -- and they don't mind one bit.
"I love them all," says Sally Davis of her brood of hens, who produce two or three eggs per day and came from Reisterstown. All of the hens were full grown when the Davis family took them in, and they liked Rosie in particular because of her beauty and cold-weather hardiness.
"All three hens are fun to watch as they eat, cluck, peck at bugs, dig in the dirt, and ruffle their feathers," says Davis. "Rosie is the largest of the three. She is black and white, and has a large red comb on her head."
Rosie eats chicken feed, grit (to help with digestion), oyster shells (which offer calcium), and vegetable and fruit scraps, and she loves seeds from melons, cucumbers, and peppers. "Chicken scratch is a treat that contains cracked corn and other grains," says Davis. "The hens gather at the edge of their pen when we come out to give them a treat," and they're not above stealing from one another to satisfy their appetites.
The chickens, says Davis, are not difficult to care for. They get fresh water every day and she scoops their coop daily and replaces its pine shaving bedding every week. They establish natural daylight rhythms and produce more eggs when days are longer -- there's a light bulb in the coop the Davis' will use when days shorten in winter.
"We've grown to love our girls in the short time they've been in the family," says Davis, and neighbors appreciate many free eggs.
To have your pet -- including hamsters, snakes, horses, guinea pigs and the like -- considered for Collared, email information to email@example.com.