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Just how do you "discipline" a hen???? I need some advice

post #1 of 20
Thread Starter 

I have 7 lovely hens. They are 8 weeks old.

They are out in their new coop and have plenty of room. I have loved and handled them from day 1.

The 2 Barred rocks. My problem girls.

They are not just pecking me, they are biting. Yes, they are actually biting me- hard sometimes where it HURTS.

For example, if I'm sitting with a couple of the others in my lap, the BR will sneak around and BITE my arm.

Then I yell & push her back but it happens so fast, like a stinking ambush. Then she'll strut around, chest all puffed out like Ms. THING

- and yesterday she attacked another hen after that, plucked a feather right off her.
Then they'll fly up and want to sit in my lap.

Darn BULLIES they are  somad

Please help me discipline these ladies, I dont like this behavior, it is not acceptable. I have always prided myself in my well behaved animals, but this is new to me.

I mean, CAN you discipline a chicken??

Perp 1: Delilah

http://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/uploads/54076_delilah_june_13_2010_029.jpg


Perp 2: Dottie

http://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/uploads/54076_dottie_june_13_2010_023.jpg


Edited by LauraG - 6/25/10 at 4:17am
post #2 of 20

I'm not sure...

grab her... carry her around... pin her...

if you find something that works let me know, my tiny little dog needs protecting

Gemma (The SilverLaced/Patridge Wyandotte Bantam) Doofy (Light Sussex) and Cinder (Gold Pencilled [?] Wyandotte Bantam) Britney (The white something freebie hen) Red (The Red something freebie hen)

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Gemma (The SilverLaced/Patridge Wyandotte Bantam) Doofy (Light Sussex) and Cinder (Gold Pencilled [?] Wyandotte Bantam) Britney (The white something freebie hen) Red (The Red something freebie hen)

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post #3 of 20

Get a hold of her immediately after an attack and turn her upside down (feet toward the sky).  She will immediately surrender.  Hold her this way for a few minutes at least.  Repeat whenever she tries the pecking thing.

post #4 of 20

Yep, Artemis responded to the upside-down treatment after a couple of those. She (also a barred rock) would run up behind me and bite my calf with any opportunity. I also take all opportunities to just pick her up and hold her. Yours are too young, probably; this becomes easier when they're at laying age and will squat down in front of you.

Used to be just 3, but chicken math has happened here at Casa Kerfluffle.
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Used to be just 3, but chicken math has happened here at Casa Kerfluffle.
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post #5 of 20

Squirt guns for some stuff, but for attacks on people, you need to be more firm and direct.

Chase her down, get hold of her immediately following the pecking and (if she has just eaten be careful about upside down - although that can be effective, she could also choke) pin her to the ground for a period of time until she gives up.  At that point you can release her or carry her slowly to a a penalty box away from the flock for a few hours.

post #6 of 20

It is just a matter of showing dominance.  YOU are at the top of the pecking order, and sometimes they have to be reminded.  Hey, that sounds like being a parent! lol

post #7 of 20

I love my BR, from day one she was the most curious, most outgoing and friendly of the lot.  She sought out our attention and loved receiving it.  No surprise, I guess, that she grew up to be at the top of the pecking order.  She hasn't pecked my skin, but always runs up for attention when I enter the run and will sometimes peck at my pants, and chase off the others.  If she gets too insistent I usually just pick her up and hold her while I check out things in the run.  At her age now (about 14 wks), she's not so crazy about being held so that usually calms her down.

"Be yourself, everyone else is taken."
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"Be yourself, everyone else is taken."
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post #8 of 20

OMG! I have one barred rock out of my 4 hens and she is a beast!!!! Her name is Camilla and she chases my large dog and my cat and they actually run from her! It's kind of funny, but she too will peck and bite...maybe it's a barred rock thing. I just thought Camilla had taken on the rooster role. I will hang her upside down if I can ever CATCH her!!!roll

"I pick my friends like I pick my fruit. My Daddy taught me that early in my youth. I don't walk around tryin' to be what I'm not, I don't waste my time tryin' to get what you've got. I work at pleasin' me 'cause I can't please you, and that's why I do what I do..." Erikah Badu
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"I pick my friends like I pick my fruit. My Daddy taught me that early in my youth. I don't walk around tryin' to be what I'm not, I don't waste my time tryin' to get what you've got. I work at pleasin' me 'cause I can't please you, and that's why I do what I do..." Erikah Badu
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post #9 of 20

THANK YOU for asking this question! I knew I would find my answer here. You guys rock!

My hens are doing so well. I have 4 girls who are happy and healthy.

One of them is very dominant and she runs at my calves and bites me whenever I turn around. I didn't know what to do, so I will try grabbing her and putting her upside down.

Thanks for the ideas!

3 boys and 6 beautiful chickens make a happy home! :) 

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3 boys and 6 beautiful chickens make a happy home! :) 

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post #10 of 20

Interesting, my BR is the sweetest of all my pullets that are 9-11 weeks old.

Can you use this same discipline with a rooster?

The only fault of a dog, is the length of their life.

My eBay auctions: http://shop.ebay.com/wolfwoman77/m.html
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The only fault of a dog, is the length of their life.

My eBay auctions: http://shop.ebay.com/wolfwoman77/m.html
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