This two-legged Chihuahua has found puppy love with a hot chick! The energetic pooch named Roo has become best friends with Silkie chicken Penny after they were rescued and re-homed together.
They now live with owner Alicia Williams at her house in Duluth, Georgia, and have become inseparable friends. The pair love playing and Penny sometimes rides on Roo’s back when he scampers outside using a specially made wheelchair.
‘The first time Roo met Penny Chicken, we placed him in a bed on the floor and she wandered over to check him out.’ recalls Alicia. ‘She was very patient while he chewed on her toes, pulled at her feathers, and rolled all over her.
‘When he tired out and fell asleep she climbed on top of him as if he were an egg – and they’ve been friends ever since.’
Penny, a Silkie chicken – so-called because of their atypically soft and fluffy plumage – was formerly used in science experiments, though it is not known what kind. She would have been disposed of had she not been taken in by Alicia, who works at Duluth Animal Hospital, who agreed to adopt her.
‘Chickens are flock animals and need companionship,’ says Alicia, ‘and I began bringing her with me to work during the day. We often have employees’ dogs in the building – why not a chicken? She was a big hit with the clients and seemed to thrive around people and other pets.
‘She’s unafraid of dogs and is not flighty or easily rattled. She became very attached to me, follows me around and likes to sit on my feet. She knows her name and comes when called.’
A few months later the hospital received a call about a tiny puppy found abandoned in a ditch.
‘Roo had been born without the lower portions of his front legs, and someone had dropped him in an abandoned park in the middle of a freezing February day,’ says Alicia.
‘He was only a couple pounds and very cold. Though we’d only had larger dogs thus far, we couldn’t say no.
‘We decided to adopt him, knowing he would need special care, a wheelchair, and likely surgery in the future.’
Roo has since had surgery to have his knees repaired earlier this year. Dogs usually carry two-thirds of their weight on the front legs and so there was extra pressure on Roo’s knees, back and spine.
‘After surgery he spent weeks recovering and Penny Chicken was never very far away, preferring to hang around his bed while he got better, going with us to his appointments, water therapy sessions, and work with the cold laser,’ says Alicia.
‘Similarly, Penny Chicken has problems with her reproductive tract, which is a major thing for a chicken, and when she has episodes, Roo stays nearby.
‘Though we’ve since added a couple more Silkie chickens to create a small flock for her, Penny mostly prefers to hang with Roo and our pitbull, Lucy.’
Silkie chickens have a similar lifespan as dogs and can live for more than 12 years and so Alicia is hoping the bonded pair can live out their lives together.