It was just an ordinary day in the stable before Nancy Elwood noticed something strange.
A chicken named Chickaleta had perched on the head of her horse Rocky, as seen in the YouTube video uploaded by Elwood in February 2016 and shared by Amazing Life on Facebook.
“Rocky, what are you doing with that chicken?” Elwood exclaims in disbelief. “Nobody is going to believe this.”
Rocky nods with gentle subtlety, apparently unbothered.
Elwood watches with anticipation, narrating the video, “And she’s down,” as Chickaleta descends from Rocky’s head, down his back and ends on his rump.
But Chickaleta is relentless! She hops back up to confront Rocky, right in the face.
“Rocky, get away from that chicken,” is the last word we hear from Elwood before the video ends.
Comments on YouTube read, “Awe the chicken is his bestie” and “As a chicken and horse mother — I love the kindness that is Rocky in this video.”
Other YouTube videos, like this one, suggest Rocky and Chickaleta’s friendship may not be all that unusual. The darling video from 2013 shows two horses giving loving kisses to a chicken perched on the door of the horse’s stable.
According to FarmStyle Australia, horses and chickens are farmhouse friends.
Their close relations stem from the fact that chickens clean stable bedding, therefore preventing horses from ingesting contaminated dirt that could make them ill.
“There are many stories of horses forming friendships with chickens; horses that wait for their friends to roost on the stable door for the night before settling down, hens that sleep on horses’ backs and pairs that wander the paddock together throughout the city,” explains Liz Compagnoni, award-winning breeder of poultry and writer for FarmStyle Australia.
You can see more examples of friendships between horses and animals of other species on Horse Nation.