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A kitten in the coop

Lylah Radach, 7, and Rhea Radach, 4, pose with the family’s kitten and chickens. The stray kitten showed up at their home in mid-November, took a liking to the chickens, and now lives in the coop. (Beth Leipholtz | Echo Press)1 / 3
When it comes time to eat, the chickens and kitten share a plate of leftovers. (Beth Leipholtz | Echo Press)2 / 3
The Radach family’s kitten even cuddles with the chickens, this one in particular. (Contributed)3 / 3

A stray kitten has found a home in an unlikely place — a Garfield family's chicken coop.

Micah and Allyson Radach say the kitten, not more than a few months old, first showed up at their home in mid-November.

"He was just tiny," Allyson said. "I don't even know how much longer he would have survived (if we hadn't found him)."

The couple's children, Lylah, 7, and Rhea, 4, took a liking to the kitten. Lylah named him Caramel due to his white and gold coloring.

"One day after school he just randomly showed up at our house underneath our trampoline," Lylah said. "So we went to get pancakes and milk (to feed the kitten)."

As Caramel stuck around, he started spending time with the family's nine chickens.

"One day I came home in the afternoon and the chickens were out by the big shed and the cat was right by them," Micah recalled. "Wherever they'd go, he'd go."

The chicken coop is a warm escape from the cold of winter, which is what Allyson thinks drew Caramel there in the first place.

"That's the warmest spot and he just gravitated into there with the chickens because there's a heat lamp in there," she said.

However, Caramel doesn't seem to spend time there just to escape the cold. The family says he and the chickens genuinely love one another.

"One time I went in there and he was actually laying on the eggs over the nesting boxes," Allyson said. "I've also seen him snuggled up against one chicken in the corner."

Though cats had never been around the home before, Caramel and the family dog, Newt, also get along splendidly. While it wasn't the plan to have a cat, the Radachs have welcomed Caramel into the family.

"We just want to be very thankful for everything God gives us, especially as we celebrate Christmas as a community and throughout the world," Micah said.

And, according to Micah, the situation is one that humans can learn a lesson from.

"These animals are a perfect example of how they are very different in most ways, but very similar in a way that they are accepting each other's differences and now have become friends," he said. "They have adapted to each other and have respect for each other. More importantly, they now seem to enjoy each other."

Beth Leipholtz

Beth is a reporter at the Echo Press. She graduated from the College of Saint Benedict in May 2015 with a degree in Communication and Hispanic Studies. Journalism has always been her passion, but she also enjoys blogging and graphic design. In her spare time, she's most likely at Crossfit or at home with her boyfriend and three dogs.

(320) 763-1233
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