A hundred years or so ago, when I was a child, they sold chicks for Easter at the local hardware store. A bunch of us persuaded one of the moms to take us to get one. (This was before it was generally known that this was not a good thing to do to the chicks)
There were about 5 of us and we each got a different colored chick. We named our chicks and proudly brought them home – to appalled moms all over the neighborhood who had no place for a chick, and the resulting grown chicken if the chick happened to live. (I now look at this through a very different lens. Back then, I was in Heaven and couldn’t figure out why my mom wasn’t delighted with my CUTE light blue chick I had named Elizabeth.
They grew – as chicks do. As they did, the dye faded or the baby chick fuzz left, replaced by feathers. Some of the chicks died. Mine didn’t, but my mom was adamant she was not going to make a chicken house. I kept Elizabeth in a box in the garage for a time, and then my friend Ann’s mom said she would take the chicks at her house. I walked to Ann’s every day to see Elizabeth. Soon, though, it was harder and harder to tell one chicken from another.
Added to this, the sweet, CUTE chicks had become pretty LARGE, mean chickens – who pecked us!
I visited Elizabeth less and less during the coming weeks. Finally, the mom who was raising the chickens for us told us that if we wanted our now fully grown chicken, we should come get them. Otherwise, they were going into the freezer.
By that time, I wasn’t upset that Elizabeth was to become a fried chicken dinner. I learned a valuable lesson. Chicks, rabbits, miniature turtles, and all the other things that are so CUTE when they’re young really shouldn’t be sold as temporary playthings to children at Easter or any other time.
I was lucky that my friend’s mom was willing to build a chicken house so that Elizabeth and the others had the best possible life they could have had, given their start in life.