Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Herroyalhenness, Jan 17, 2013.

  1. Herroyalhenness

    Herroyalhenness Chirping

    Dec 12, 2012
    Okay, I know this website is about exclusively chicken and poultry, so I'll start off with one of my biggest concerns. my NH red, Milly will go into (what I call) "Mommy mode" whenn she's about to lay. then she'll stay in the nesting box, and sit on the egg, occasionally turning it (which is the cutest thing on the planet, but still concerning). I just thought this was normal behavior until I went to collect the eggs, and my Ameraucauna, Clucky caught me taking them, jumped into the nesting box, and gave me her "why would you do this to me" stare until she guilt-tripped me into putting them back, and decided to have my sister get them in a few hours. On my way back into the house, I looked into the coop window, and saw Clucky's fluffy butt sticking out of the nesting box. she had jumped up, and (I think) was trying to organize them to sit on. We don't have a roo, so I don't know whether or not this is normal...
    Second problem...
    I have a border collie who, every time he goes near the coop, he starts sniffing around fro poop, and when he finds it... well, i manage to hold him back, and say "no", but he won't listen. WHAT DO I DO????

  2. Chick_In_The_Burbs

    Chick_In_The_Burbs Songster

    Jun 26, 2010
    Western Washington
    I can't help with the dog issue -Bleeek- but it sounds like your hen is going or is broody. How much time does she spend on the nest?

    It's not really an issue with no rooster, it's just a question of what you want to do. Do you want her to hatch chicks? You will have to swap eggs on her if so. If not, there are different ways to 'break' a broody.

    You should look in on the old fashioned broody thread. Plenty of advise and knowledge on there. :)

    Good luck.
  3. Hinotori

    Hinotori Silver Feathers Premium Member

    Apr 27, 2011
    Graham, WA
    Just make sure worm your dog as necessary. There really isn't a way to break dogs of eating chicken poop. They may be good when you're watching, but turn your back and they eat it.
  4. jdywntr

    jdywntr Songster

    Oct 31, 2009
    Somerville, AL
    Going broody with or without a rooster is normal. Its instinct. If you don't want her to stay in the nest, take the eggs, every day. There are ways to break a broody, if she refuses to leave the nest.

    As for the dog, take it out on a leash, put a perimeter fence around your coop, or deal with it. Dogs eat gross things. You may be able to break it but it will require alot of training, time and patience.
  5. FenikT

    FenikT Chirping

    Dec 5, 2012
    One of my Cornish hens acts a bit broody too, but nothing outlandish. If the nest is empty, she will sometimes keep the golf ball warm. I keep it in there all the time as motivation for them. If the other hens (two other Cornish and two EEs) happen to lay before her that day, she will man the nest when its vacant and keep things cozy on/off. She is a pretty reliable layer (nearly every day), but looks to have a soft spot for unattended golf balls and eggs [​IMG] If I toss scratch into the yard or showcase some treats, she will abandon the nest w/ no issue.

    My dog (Wire Hair Fox Terrier) is Mr. Pooh Eater if given the chance. I've caught him a couple times in the act and wore him out afterwards.

  6. Herroyalhenness

    Herroyalhenness Chirping

    Dec 12, 2012
    lately, my ameraucaunas have been guilt-tripping me out of taking the eggs [​IMG]. Took the eggs, and this time, Mercy (the one who always gives the stink eye to the camera lol) was sitting on ALL of the eggs, and when I took them, she looked under herself for the eggs, stuck her head out to egg-colecting-door-thingie, and then looked at me. I felt so bad for her, I put them back. they say they have bird brains. well they use any and all inteligence on human manipulation XD. (It's our first flock, and I over-think things too much, so I know what you all want to do.... [​IMG]<<that. I want to do it to myself just for posting this lol [​IMG]) so I'll definately start taking the eggs. the main reason, (apart from the guilt tripping) that I put them back was because there was only one blue egg accounted for, and since Mercy was in the nest, I didn't want her to stress about the other eggs, and not lay hers. [​IMG]
  7. MA acreage

    MA acreage Hatching

    Jul 22, 2012
    Can't speak to much to the broody problem as of yet though my wife would like ours to. She really likes the chicks. But with the dogs go out and buy an e collar start with the warning tone then progress further
  8. dretd

    dretd Songster

    Apr 14, 2009
    Ft Collins, CO
    Hi Herroyalhenness!

    It does sound like your hen may be thinking baout going broody but is not serious about it yet. Some can be very serious and some are dabblers. If they will get off the nest for food/treats I figure they aren't serious and I will collect eggs twice a day and take them off the nest whenever I can. If they are serious about it--take them off the nest and they look and sound like mad turkeys and can be very hard to break.

    My avatar is Cluckles1. She goes broody every August. I won't let her set eggs because the babies would be vulnerable in the fall with our unpredictable weather. I have let her set a small number of eggs (mark those and collect any other eggs your other hens lay) in the past when I didn't have a roo and this last year I pulled them and replaced with golf balls. I let her set 21 days, a normal incubation period, then I pull all the eggs/balls and start pulling her off the nest at every opportunity. It takes a couple of days for her to snap out of her hormones. I have tried to break her without the fake incubation and found it impossible to do.

    Another one of my hens went broody and I let her set the eggs. It was very cute watching the 3 roos (go figure) that she hatched. If you are of a mind to have her raise babies, then you could get fertile eggs (I see them on Craigslist form time to time), off an auction on BYC or go to a natural grocers and even try hatching fertile eggs from the egg section (there is a Trader Joes thread here on that very thing). The hen that went broody wasnt setting on her own eggs so I pulled 3 from the fridge because I didn't think it was fair to her and one of them hatched. Of course you'll be stuck getting rid of any roos that hatch. It took a couple of weeks for me on CL, but found them a non-dinner home.

    As for the dog, work with training. With patience and repetition, you may be able to train him not to eat the poop (at least while you are there). What works for me is to train them on the command 'leave it'. That means put it down or stop sniffing the thing you are interested in. Start out with toys or treats. Set the object near them and tell them to sit. If they sniff at it or pick it up tell them ' leave it', take it away from them set it back down and make them sit. Even better would be to say 'no' when they first show interest , followed by 'leave it'.

    When my dog (also a Border Collie, but not terribly bright) was a puppy she was hideous and I would have to wrestle dead things from her. She would also chase all sorts of wildlife. After training, she will ignore even rabbits close to her and drop/leave irresistable dead things. I think all dogs should be taught that command as it could save their life if they grab something poisonous or come near a snake that could strike them.

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