Killahornia, Roscommon: On April 28, 2022, Jasper Kraus, a Dutch ex-pat living in Killahornia, Roscommon, tragically lost his life after being viciously attacked by a Brahma chicken.
The ordinarily docile breed had been moved to Kraus’s property after it had attacked a child, but no one could have anticipated the fatal consequences that would ensue.
Kraus, who had previously survived cancer and had a heart condition, was waiting for emergency services when he slipped in and out of consciousness, murmuring the word “rooster” before passing away.
His tenant, Corey O’Keeffe, who had rushed to his aid, attempted to give him CPR for half an hour before the ambulance arrived. When emergency services arrived at the scene, they found Kraus surrounded by a pool of blood.
During an inquest into Kraus’s death, Garda Eoine Browne of the Clonark neighborhood stated that O’Keefe had attempted CPR on the victim without success.
When she arrived at the scene, Kraus’s daughter, Virginia Guinan, testified that one of the Brahma chickens had blood on its claws. She knew immediately that the bird had caused her father’s death, as that same chicken had also attacked her daughter.
Dr. Annette Jennings, who read a deposition at the inquest, said that paramedics attempted to resurrect Kraus when she arrived, but he was pronounced dead at 3:24 pm.
Dr. Ramadan Shatwan from the University College Hospital gave evidence at the inquest, concluding that the cause of Kraus’s death was due to lethal cardiac arrhythmia in the context of severe coronary atheroma and cardiomegaly.
While chickens are typically considered harmless, some breeds, like the Brahma, are known to have powerful pecking abilities that can cause harm if they feel threatened. Chickens have been known to attack humans and cause fatal puncture wounds within a few seconds.
This tragic incident has sparked a debate about the safety of keeping backyard chickens. Although it has become increasingly popular recently, animal experts warn that keeping poultry as pets is not without risks. Chickens, in particular, can carry diseases such as salmonella, which can be transmitted to humans.
Virginia Guinan, Kraus’s daughter, warned others about the dangers of keeping poultry as pets, even supposedly safe breeds like the Brahma. She stated, “you wouldn’t think a chicken can be dangerous – but they can be. It was a malicious attack, fierce. There were liters of blood all over the floor when I arrived.”
Experts recommend that people closely monitor their chickens and take appropriate measures to ensure their safety.
Backyard chickens can sometimes threaten other animals and wildlife, so keeping them in a secure area is essential to prevent them from wandering. People should also be aware of the signs of aggression and take appropriate measures to protect themselves and others.
In conclusion, Jasper Kraus’s death is a tragic reminder of the potential dangers of keeping chickens as pets. While generally considered harmless, chickens can turn aggressive and cause serious harm to humans.
This incident highlights the need for people to be aware of the signs of aggression and take appropriate measures to protect themselves and others. The tragedy of Kraus’s death should not be in vain and prompt a greater understanding of the risks involved in keeping chickens as pets.