Family runs afoul with 'nasty rooster'

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— The Kaatz family home in Steamboat Springs looks normal enough a two-story house with wood siding, a detached garage, an SUV parked out front and children playing.

But closer inspection reveals more like chickens, geese and ducks pecking for bugs in the yard and lizards laying eggs inside the living room.

The pet-crazed Kaatz family loves its menagerie of fowl, lizards, dogs and cats.

There are few animals they will turn away.

But they may have met their match in the rooster with an attitude.

In Tuesday's Steamboat Today, the family placed the following classified ad:

"Free to good home: Nasty old rooster, hates people, crows all day, may be better in a pot."

"He's a nasty rooster," said Fred Kaatz, a mortgage broker. "He's attacked my wife and went after me once. He's attacked the kids some of it well deserved."

Even the rooster's fellow fowl are fair-weathered friends Kaatz said.

"When we put him in with the geese, they try to kill him," Kaatz said. "When we put him with the ducks, they fight. We've had our fill of him."

On Tuesday afternoon, the rooster was the only bird strutting around in the Kaatz' yard. The others roosted comfortably in their cool fowl house.

Eleven-year-old Murray Kaatz said the brown rooster with its red crown and waddle has been relegated to the dog house located next to the driveway.

A little more than a year ago, the Kaatzes lost a bevy of small birds to a fox who found the birds resting in the dog house. Now the family has put the "nasty old rooster" in the dog house.

Hoping the rooster meets a similar fate?

"Nah, we love him," Kaatz said. "We figure he might be better off somewhere else like the country."

The Kaatzes thought they had a taker, but the man's wife refused to adopt the rooster.

Meanwhile, the Kaatz children, sometimes armed with brooms, walk cautiously around the proud cock.

While showing off one of his chickens, 8-year-old Mitch Kaatz stood frozen with fear as the rooster strolled too close for comfort.

"Daaad," he said softly but desperately.

Dad laughed.

"He's got you guys so scared," he said.

Twelve-year-old Audrey said her three little brothers might deserve anything they get.

"He started getting nasty when a couple of people in the family starting throwing rocks at him," she said, looking in a knowing manner at her brothers.

"He got evil and I threw an egg at him," said 11-year-old Murray, defending himself.

Whatever the reason for the bad attitude nature's instinct or human-induced this rooster may need a new home.

Anyone interested in adopting the rooster can call the Kaatzes at 870-2811 or 879-7405.

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