Dogs, Chickens, and a Random Act of Kindness

For most of this month, I’m concentrating on all things spooky. But during “A Look Back, a Look Ahead,” I wanted to concentrate on another part of autumn: Togetherness. We come together for Trick or Treat and parties; we come together for apple-picking and pumpkin carving; we come together to sip warm apple cider while huddled around an even warmer fire. I wrote a while ago about about the impact kindness can have, and between everyone being tired of the pandemic and the current political environment (gotta love election years, right?), I thought it would be nice to set aside one day a week to focus on acts of kindness.

A Kindness Memory

I’m going to preface this by saying that my family has the sweetest dog in the world. (Okay, so everyone thinks their dog is the best, but… ours is really super sweet.) When Lilly was a puppy and we’d all be giving her attention, she would crawl from one of us to the next–making sure all of us pet her–in what we used to call a “love circle.” She’s always been very loving and gentle, and today’s kindness memory is all about her. First, a bit of background: My dad raises chickens as a hobby. You’d think that would be a problem with a dog. (And usually, yes it is: We’ve lost many chickens to neighbors’ dogs who have run loose.) But not with Lilly. When chicks were newly hatched, she’d just wander over and look in on them–more like a curious toddler than a canine. But one day, Lilly went even beyond her usual sweetness: It was summertime, so we had her outside, getting some fresh air. An unexpected summer rain came, and we all rushed inside and Lilly, of course, ducked into her doghouse. A few of my dad’s chickens were outside pecking away, and most of them darted back into the henhouse. But one decided that Lilly’s dog house looked more comfortable. Most dogs would have either barked away the intruder (in the least) or had themselves a nice chicken lunch. Not Lilly… she scooted over and let the chicken keep her company during the quick rain.

Here’s a picture of Lilly all cuddle-snuggled in bed. (We couldn’t find her… turns out, she decided that my brother’s bed was more comfortable than hers.)

Kindness Challenge of the Day

Do something nice for someone who is your opposite. Maybe they don’t agree with your political views? Or they come from a different background? Doesn’t matter. We are all people, so do something today that connects rather than separates. If a dog and a chicken can share a dog house, then we can share a few friendly words with one another.

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