I’ve made it no secret that I want chickens. A bevy of Bantams. Little fluffy fancy egg layers that would make me feel, in some teensy way, a bit more connected to my food production. Our house is in a rural enough area, and our yard large enough, that a couple hens running around would be no big deal. But my husband said no, and out of respect for all the other times he also said no but I went ahead and did it- whatever it was- anyway, I respected him, this time.
But then we sold our house, and in a short three weeks we’ll be out on the street, waiting for something in Crazy Town or Ticky Tacky Town to pop up and sweep me off my feet. It’s a rotten time to buy. Nothing’s for sale right now. So in the meantime, we’re apartment hunting.
I haven’t lived in an apartment since my first year of vet school. There’s nothing wrong with it, but boy, you forget when you’ve been in a house for a while how much garbage you’ve managed to accumulate. And it’s not just me accumulating stuff anymore. The last time I lived in an apartment, I had a roommate, a self sufficient classmate. Now I have two kids, two dogs, a cat, a fish, and a spouse. This is going to be rough.
I’ve never given it much thought, really. I’ve never had to rent a house while owning pets, and had at most two dogs and two cats. Not a big deal for a homeowner, but a really big deal for an apartment renter.
“Two dogs?” asked the manager of the place we were looking at. “How big?” And then, “Are they pit bulls, American staffordshire terriers, German Shepherds, Rottweilers, Dobermans, or chow chows?” And the answer to that is no, but one of them has a terrible, awful habit of howling when she’s left alone in a way that made her previous owners return her to rescue. Again, not a big deal for a homeowner who keeps her inside, but a really big deal for an apartment renter. I know I would rather live next to a quiet pittie than a howling Koa as a renter. This is going to be a challenge.
I’ll be honest, I have no idea what we’re going to do. We’ll figure it out, because we have no choice, but I’m finding myself suddenly piles and heaps more sympathetic to people in a worse situation, with dogs they love on some random BSL ban list, or in possession of more animals than zoning allows and having to make an agonizing decision. I also find myself strangely mourning the Chickens That Never Were And Are Never To Be. No chickens allowed in Crazy Town. I guess I will have to live vicariously through all of you that have them.