Southwell's Emma Pay reveals a heart-warming story after adopting from the British Hen Welfare Trust
A Southwell resident has expressed the positive and uplifting impact that hens have had on her life.
After Newark were visited by the British Hen Welfare Trust, Emma Pay, of Southwell, adopted multiple hens as she hoped to improve her mental well-being.
More than 300 hens were rehomed during the visit and Emma, who is battling depression, said the three hens she rehomed helped not only herself, but her daughter, who has autism and her grandmother, who has dementia.
“The hens have had a great impact on my everyday life,” said Emma.
"It can be a powerful feeling when you make a great connection with an animal.
"Even after just four days we saw so much progress with them.
"When we first got them [the hens] they were nervous and running away, but now they are welcoming and there is a connection.
"At the minute they are the kings of the garden."
Emma adopted the hens in tribute to her grandmother, who like her, is passionate about animal welfare.
"My grandmother used to have chickens and she was the real reason I decided to adopt," she said.
"She suffers with dementia and they have helped her get out her chair.
"She now stands up and watches them run around the garden.
"I catch her staring at them and I know it is making her happier."
Emma also acknowledged how uplifting the hens have been for her daughter.
"A lot of children with autism have special interests," she said. "It can be numbers, trains or toys.
"But, in this case, its hens.
"They help break down barriers, and I think that is the case with most animals."
The lifetime Southwell resident used to home ferrets, snakes and lizards, but in the meantime, she said her family is happy with their trio of dogs, cats and hens.