When this little creature hatched out of an egg, it changed the way Rebekah Cummings thought of disabilities forever.
Cummings’ grandfather gave her the egg and told her to see if it would hatch. She put it in an incubator. Cummings had hatched chickens before, but she had no idea this time would be very different.
On May 4, 2015, a little beak cracked open the shell. But something was wrong.
The chick had no eyes.
Cummings went online to ask for advice about how to care for the unusual newborn chick. She was told the chick just wouldn’t make it. The best thing would be to “cull” the little creature, people said. Life without eyes didn’t seem worth living to anyone — except Cummings.
“I stood up for her life even with many people telling me I was cruel and ridiculous for ‘prolonging her suffering’ and I was wasting my time,” Cummings said. “But as an animal lover I stood my ground.”
Cummings named the chick Mumble. “It was very difficult bringing her up, knowing that any day I could wake up and find she had passed away, but Mumble, being the fighter she is, pulled through,” Cummings said.
A year later, Mumble, lives with the dogs, cats, rabbits, humans and other chickens of the Cummings family in North Somerset, U.K. Mumble has become an ambassador for disabled creatures everywhere.
Her Facebook page has over 25,000 followers. And Mumble, through her human, is providing advice about living the good life — even if a chick has some initial setbacks.
“She’s now a year old, and as beautiful as ever,” Cummings said. “More and more people are messaging her page asking for advice with disabled chicks now also, rather than just culling them. She brings so much joy to many people, and I’m so proud of her.”
Even if she’s not a traditional pet, the other pets of the Cummings household don’t see her any differently. Mumble routinely naps with all the other animals, especially Maddie, a 7-year-old Staffordshire bull terrier.
And her friend Nyx, another chicken, hardly ever leaves Mumble’s side.
The disabled chick who transformed into a beautiful and happy pet also transformed Cummings.
“Now, knowing how many chickens are actually culled for minor things such as being blind, I will be rescuing when I have the opportunity,” Cummings said.
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