Advice on what to do with a cripple chicken.

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by elizabet253, Feb 21, 2015.

  1. elizabet253

    elizabet253 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have 9 hens, 2 roosters. 1 hen is cripple, my mom won't let me burtucher her, which is a shame because she can only use on leg and she recently got her eye poked out by I'm guessing the rooster by accident? The thing is, this rooster also protects her, some of the chickens are mean to the cripple hen for no reason, she can barley move around, but this rooster who protects her needs to go. I had 4 hens in quariteen (including the cripple), who are now better. He would stalk their quarters, and I finally let him with them, after I allowed him with these old mature hens (my 2 roosters and my 5 hens are all under a year) he started being an ***! He's attacked me twice already, tried to get into a fight with my large dog, attacked him once when he went into their chicken coop with me, attacked my chihuhua (may have confused her for a chicken?) and almost killed my other rooster because he went into their chicken coop too. But my other rooster who is nice, is mean to these new 4 mature hens, and I can't have him be mean to the cripple one. I'm guessing it's normal since he doesn't know them? But he also lets another hen in his flock dominate him. They literally fight often, for no reason it seems. Right now the cripple chicken is in our front yard in the shed with the mean protective rooster and her 3 other hens (who have protected her a few times from me when I tried to pick her up), there's a chicken coop is the back of our yard with goats and a chicken run, I doubt she can fly so I figured she could stay there, but I just don't want the other hens to potentially kill her or harm her or stress her out. Is there anything I can put on her to protect her? Can one rooster handle watching over 9 hens? My mom said the other rooster acts like a typical rooster, my other nice one, I've never seen him protect a hen, but he's not worth getting killed. Hes my favorite chicken! He lets me pick him and pet him. But the mean rooster attacking my chihuahua is crossing the line. He chased my favorite chicken (rooster) around the whole house, cornered him, got on top of him, pecked him in the face, and only left him alone once I showed up. Who knows if he would have stopped on his own if I didnt show up.
     
  2. pdirt

    pdirt Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Your crippled hen sounds bordered upon being an abused animal. Either keep it locked up in it's own area with other hens, cull her or get rid of the roosters. I doubt it was an accident that her eye was pecked out. Chickens (and other animals) will often "take care of" (as in, kill) weak members of their flock. It sounds like you've got some flock issues/pecking order issues going on. Perhaps you can convince your mom that the crippled hen isn't living a life worth living.

    Can't answer most of your questions, but as for "can 1 rooster watch over 9 hens", the best answer would be, "probably". Some roosters are happy with 4 hens, others need 10-15.
     
  3. elizabet253

    elizabet253 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Well, she lived with 5 other hens before, they would just pick on her, one is mean to her though so I am going to cull her, and then one of my own chickens is mean to her though, but they also don't know eachother, so pecking order? The one rooster protects her when the other hens are mean to her, my other rooster is mean to her but he also doesnt know her along with her 3 other hens who sometimes will protect her too. So I do think it was an accident that her eye was poked out because this was while she was in quarinteen wit her 3 hens, and the one rooster got into their coop with them, but he's nice to them, just not to me....
     
  4. bobbi-j

    bobbi-j Chicken Obsessed

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    If this were my flock, I would put the poor, crippled chicken out of her misery. What kind of quality of life does she have right now, with the other chickens "picking on" her? What kind of life would she have if she were isolated so the don't pick on her? Neither one is a good option, in my opinion. I would also get rid of the human-aggressive rooster. Aggression is not "typical behavior". Maybe to some roosters, but it's not necessary to put up with it. In my roosters, "typical behavior" is to lead the hens away from me rather than attack me.
     
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  5. elizabet253

    elizabet253 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Well, I am going to get rid of the rooster that attacks me and my dogs. He almost killed my favorite chicken too (who is also a rooster) and I almost did already euthanize her, after she got poked in the eye, she got sick, she was getting weaker and barley moved. I treated her, she's better now, but my mom says she's a pet. If it were me, I'd put her down too. I feel bad for her, she has only one good leg and one good eye and she makes these pitty little chirps when someone is mean to her. Breaks my heart.


    Edited by Staff
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 22, 2015
  6. elizabet253

    elizabet253 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    That rooster also mates in front of me too. He's not getting any better so he is going to go. Has any ate rooster before? My mom said they aren't that good. And she'd rather give him away for free than cook him.


    Edited by Staff
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 22, 2015
  7. pdirt

    pdirt Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Roosters are just as tasty (IMO) as hens, provided they're under 6 months of age. Older than that and they will get tough, as will any chicken. You can still eat them, though, you just need to stew them for a long time (hours). Brining helps tenderize them, I hear, but I haven't yet tried it. They will soften up quite a bit in a stew but won't be as tender as a younger bird.
     

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