PUBLISHED ON: 4 April 2014
It's rare for birds born into the meat and egg industries to get the chance at a happy ending, but just over a week ago these fluffy little fellows were given the chance to discover human (and canine) kindness. They were rescued from an almost certainly grim future by photographer Candice, and the unlikely foster parent Champ.
Noticing that her local feed store, in California, was closing down and disposing of all their 'stock' — including a dozen barely week-old chicks — Candice was compelled to act. She stepped in to spare the chicks from being sold and most likely raised for meat, and took them into foster care until a forever home could be found.
Initially cautious about introducing the chicks to Champ, her eleven-year-old golden retriever, Candice’s fears quickly proved to be unfounded. Whilst Champ had been a rambunctious puppy, he was now an older, calmer (and perhaps wiser) dog. Even though he’d never seen chicks before, he showed them the same patience and kindness Candice had shown him.
"The wisdom and calm nature of senior dogs are unmatched," Candice told TODAY.com
Most chicks raised for meat and eggs are never nurtured by their mothers. But, even though they're essentially orphans from birth, their desire for affection is innate. These young chicks were immediately drawn to the gentle Champ and his fluffy tail became the mother’s wing they never had.
"The chicks loved to burrow under Champ's fur. It kept them warm just as their mother’s feathers would. I love to joke around and say that Champ has 'adopted' these chicks since he has seemed to take on this motherly duty," Candice said.
No one deserves to be separated from their mother, but these chicks found the perfect foster 'mother' in Champ. And now, thankfully Candice has found them a forever home. To see more photos of this loving and unconventional little family visit Candice's facebook page.
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