Doncaster rescue dog and chicken become unlikely best pals during lockdown
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Animal lover Jennifer Read, 49, has rescued over 30 animals but none have taken to each other like best pals Florence the hen and Asha the labrador.
The unlikely pairing have become inseparable during lockdown after Florence fell ill with a water belly - which is when a chicken suffers from heart failure.
The heart failure had caused Florence's liver to stop functioning properly and it was also discovered she had a tumour six weeks ago.
She was separated from her flock and began to spend more time with Asha who immediately became protective of her new pal.
The hen struggled to walk due to her condition but the peckish bird sprung back to life after having a bite of a scone.
Jennifer says the buttery biscuit must have given Florence a "new purpose" as the three-year-old chicken has made a full recovery and now enjoys daily baked goods.
Jennifer, from Goole, said: “We rescued Florence two years ago - she had no feathers and was really poorly.
“And then just as lockdown hit, she had a water belly and had a tumour so we decided to take her away from the flock during Covid-19.
“One day I was having my tea and a scone, and Florence just bit it off my hand and ate it.
“I think the scone saved her life, because it must have been so good it gave her a purpose in life because she suddenly made a full recovery.
“I don’t eat a lot of baked treats but I bake every day for her now. Anything from scones to carrot cakes.
“Six weeks ago she wasn’t even moving - but now she’s doing so well, she’s completely fine.
“I’m an animal lover and my husband and I have been rescuing animals with difficult backgrounds for years.
“But it’s remarkable how they can flourish if you show them some love - it’s one of life’s greatest joys to watch it happen.”
Jennifer and her husband Julian have no children - but the couple have rescued over 30 animals including over two dozen chicken, four geese and three cats.
She rescued 10-year-old labrador cross Asha after finding her on the street in Doncaster five years ago, and rescued her bestie Florence in 2018.
The musical director said: “I never expected these two to become best friends but it’s been a highlight for me during lockdown.
“It’s so funny because now she acts like a dog she really likes to mirror Asha.
“She waits by the door for us to take her for a walk, she wants to eat with Asha and even sleep with her.
“She’s so funny you’ll call her name and she’ll come at the speeds of knots.
“And Asha absolutely loves the chicken but none as much as she loves Florence.
“It’s a nightmare every night because Asha won’t come back in because they’ll just stare at each other all day.
“They just hangout daily and just enjoy chilling. Wherever the chicken is, the dog is.
“They’ve become inseparable and it’s been so heartwarming to see their friendship budding.
“Our neighbours always laugh because they’ll see her waiting at the door for us to take her on a walk.
She added: “They were sunbathing together just the other day, it’s just so cute.”