Klitgau: Why are more and more people raising chickens and sheep?

Summer, sun and chicken. Imagining this image requires only a little imagination and there it is: a feeling of happiness – at least for most people.

Older villagers are familiar with this utopia since childhood – many of them have disappeared over decades: but for a number of years and especially recently, you cannot believe your eyes and ears, even in the immaculate new construction areas, in bourgeois residential areas you can hear and see croaking and scratching. Chicken farming is a fad? Because of the Corona pandemic? Or longing for the poetess and home?

In general, it seems that keeping pets as a hobby is on the rise. Not only chickens can be found in villages, but sheep, goats, piglets and other animals can also be found in gardens and often on the outskirts of the village – they are mostly kept for recreational purposes.

What constitutes the new enthusiasm for animal husbandry?

In the Netzhammer family in Erzingen, the wonderful Emil wanders the overgrown and fenced part of the great garden, always accompanied by his harem. But one of the ladies is missing, she takes care of the seven chicks in the barn, the young are only a week old, but they have already made a lot of noise.

The group of chickens in the Netzhammer family garden from Erzingen is living a good life.

The group of chickens in the Netzhammer family garden from Erzingen is living a good life. | Photo: Eva Baumgartner

The Twelve-Year-Old Daughter of the Jules knows a lot about chickens and is happy to provide the information: “We have chickens because of the eggs. We can collect up to five ones every day. And the cool thing is also, they eat all the kitchen scraps that come up.” However, you have to Be careful, a fox once tried to snatch a chicken in broad daylight, but the brave Emil chased it away, losing its tail feathers in the process.

The offspring in the Netzhammer chicken coop.

The offspring in the Netzhammer chicken coop.

Netzhammers focuses on healthy nutrition with organic foods. “Organic eggs from healthy organic chickens that are kept in a species-appropriate manner are important to us,” says Jules’ mother, Nicole Netzhamer. For them, the need for idealism is less, because raising chickens requires work and responsibility.

Chickens are almost like pets

Nine-year-old Jolanda Streule, Joel’s cousin from Gurtweil, would like to serve up her chicken. “We have six beautiful Orpington hens, they are very tame and can also be teased,” she says happily. “Our chickens are almost pets, they have a good personality and the kids are enthusiastic,” adds her mother, Susan Streol.

Jolanda's Orpington chickens are very tame.

Jolanda’s Orpington chickens are very tame. | Photo: Eva Baumgartner

It is clear that the fact that the family decided to buy chicken was because of Corona – suddenly more time and comfort in the house. She explains frankly: “We have corona chickens.” Anyway, her husband always wanted chicken, so the timing was really good.

Hobby pet owners should take this into consideration

Animals convey a sense of home

It’s different with Patrickrutschmann from Geißlingen. For him, animals mean home. “I grew up with animals, with cows, pigs and even ponies. For me, animals are part of life.” He has always lived and worked in Geißlingen, living with his family on his grandparents’ former farm in the suburbs.

Patrickrutschmann with a sheep and their offspring.  Photos: Eva Baumgartner

Patrickrutschmann with a sheep and their offspring. Photos: Eva Baumgartner | Photo: Eva Baumgartner

The 41-year-old is a Geisslinger through and through, works for the local Mack, plays at the local music club and is very close to his village. Some time ago he fulfilled his desire to live with animals.

“Corona played no role for me,” he says, in his report on the Quessant sheep, the pygmy Breton sheep. “It should be a small breed that doesn’t take up much space,” he says. Johnny the ram, two sheep, Lucy and Maggie were baptized by three-and-a-half-year-old son Clemens, and started at the beginning.

In the meantime, a second packet was added, which immediately offered two small dollars. As if that wasn’t enough, there were two dwarf goats as a birthday present. But there should be no more animals in the Therutschmanns. “I will now build a stationary bridle with a portable shelter, then everything will be perfect for us,” says Patrick Truchman happily.

Mother and son are having a nap.

Mother and son are having a nap. | Photo: Eva Baumgartner

Although the motivation for keeping pets as a hobby varies individually, there seems to be one thing that unites all pet owners: it’s the fun and love of animals.

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