About 4 years ago, I came home with 3 gold laced wyandottes. I didn't have a coop or anything built, and they were little chicks. I put together a brooder for them using an old wicked blanket chest I had planned to throw in the trash. I didn't want to use a heat lamp for the risk or fire, nor did I want a light blazing at all hours in my bedroom (yes, I kept them in my bedroom). I remembered what my father used to do for his tropical plants in the winter months and figured it would do the same thing for chicks! So, I got out the trusty old heating pad and draped it over a small shoe box in the brooder. It was a big hit and those chicks grew up to be beautiful, productive ladies. They were very spoiled birds that would jump into my lap to have their ears scratched.
Eighteen months after those first chicks and a big coop and run building project, a nasty old opossum found a flaw in the aviary netting and tarp I used for a roof attached to the run and coop. It destroyed my flock leaving one lone surviving silver laced wyandotte. It was one of the lowest points in my life. Not just because my pet chickens were left in pieces strewn across my back yard, but also I had lost my dog to cancer the month before and my mother-in-law was under hospice care for a long illness (we moved her and her husband in when they both became ill). It was very hard to see what had happened to my pet chickens on top of everything else. I re-homed the last chicken with a friend and decided that someday, I might try again when life was more calm.
I'm really glad to have found your thread, @Blooie. It's very inspirational to see all the different ways folks have found to use a heating pad in a brooder. I really like your setup for your chicks at your home. It's so nice to see all the modifications of the cave or huddle boxes that everyone has made for their chickies. This time around, I'm using 2 heating pads for my 4 chicks and they are loving it! I've been reading it for some time now. When the weather is more clear and I have some natural light in my craft room, I will share a photo.
@16 paws I think your experience is significant and helpful to someone that has a chick they want to give some extra special TLC. From your photo, it looks like the MHP has been a success! I really can't say that I could have done any better if something like that would happen to one of my pets. I also can understand why you feel hurt. I think your chick looks beautiful and you are doing a good job doing the best you can for her to have a shot at life. I'm rooting for the two of you!!!
Thanks so much.I think she is beautiful too. She is doing very well so far. I am pleased with her progress.
I am so sorry you had to go thru so much heartache and all at one time. You are a very brave person. Enjoy your new little chickidies and happy crafting. I have worked at Michaels for over 10 years and love crafty, creative people.