Attachment problems

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by homesteader34, May 30, 2007.

  1. homesteader34

    homesteader34 In the Brooder

    May 30, 2007
    North Carolina
    First of all hello everyone im not new to this board but new as a member. You guys have helped me out in more ways than one. You just didnt know it..[​IMG] My problem is this..I homeschool my kids, so we are home alot. We have had 15 bitties in our house in a cage. Well the time has come to put them outside. They are old enough and our coop and run is done. But we cant get the courage to do it. We have babied them and they are like pets now. My husband said he knew this would happen. All of our pets we treat like humans...Part of the family. We wont be able to watch after them during the night and we are worried about predators. I dont know who wil be more upset me or the kids. I actually feel bad for letting my kids and I get so attached to them. But its the way we are. We love nature and all creatures.. So, how did you guys do it? How did you survive the first night or week with them outside the house? I do hope I dont sound crazy.. but i feel I am even considering putting in a hot wire fence around their run to make the kids and i feel better. My dog(mini datsun) and my cat love the bitties. They were in the house with them the whole time. No attempts to harm them. But there are huge dogs and foxs, bobcats, and bears in our area. Also going today to get a pellet gun. We dont own anything besides a paintball gun. My husband says im turning the place into fort knox...Any help or advice will be great. Im debating not sending this post through.. I still cant beleive im posting this over chickens...We love them though.
  2. chickbea

    chickbea Songster

    Jan 18, 2007
    Fort Knox is just what you want in an outside coop. The more secure it is, the better you will sleep!
    Think of it this way - once the girls are outside, you just have to go out there to watch them and play with them. We eat outside almost every night in the summer, and have a lovely chicken floor show to watch. In the winter my girls are in a different coop, and their window is right across the yard from my den window. Then it is like chicken TV!
    Most of the people on here consider their chickens to be pets. Don't apologize!
  3. verthandi

    verthandi Songster

    May 18, 2007
    From what you have said your coop and run are finished. Do you feel that your coop is secure for them to be in over night? If not are there more steps that you could take to improve that?

    Is the pen high enough and strong enough to keep them safe? I spend a lot of time outside with mine while I do yard work. It seems like it would be fun and educational for you and your children to be outside with them...fresh air and sunshine while you are around to see how the chickens are adjusting to their new life. Believe me...once the chickens discover bugs and worms in the soil, they will be happy outside.
  4. WoodlandWoman

    WoodlandWoman Crowing

    May 8, 2007
    Bears, well, a hot wire sounds good for them. For all the other predators, if you have a sturdy coop with no openings that they can get through, your chickens should be OK at night, after you lock them up. If you put 1/2' hardware cloth over any larger openings, like ventilation holes and windows, they can still get air and be safe. If you have hawks around, you can either put wire or netting over your run or take some type of string and run it back and forth, to make it difficult to swoop down to get a chicken.

    I think most people get attached to their chickens and worry about putting them out into the world. It's so much fun to watch them scratching and pecking around outside, though. They always look so happy out there, that I never mind letting them go outside.
  5. bayouchica

    bayouchica Songster

    Jan 23, 2007
    N.E. Louisiana
    Hi & welcome. [​IMG] I've been raising chickens for three years or so & no it doesn't get easy.Some folks on here have got baby monitors to listen for trouble in the coop at night & someone else has a web cam.
    My coop is not too far from my bedroom & I always have the window open or just a little.I figure if something happens my dogs will wake me up. They do anyways if a possum or coon is close by. [​IMG]
    It's hard I know, they grow up too fast. [​IMG] I recently put mine out in the coop,they are around a month old. I had my hubby build a secure box for them to sleep in to make me feel better. It's got a A- frame top for them to perch & it's screened in.
    You've come to the right place, we're all chicken crazy folks here. The more the merrier. [​IMG] [​IMG]
    So when ya can post some pics. Love to see your babies.
  6. homesteader34

    homesteader34 In the Brooder

    May 30, 2007
    North Carolina
    See thats part of my worry. Im 99% sure its safe. But I just am not sure. I havent had chickens since I was 7yrs old. Im 34 now. I just dont want to forget something and pay the price. Thank you guys for the quick posts.
  7. Queen of the Lilliputians

    Queen of the Lilliputians Songster

    Apr 5, 2007
    When I moved my babies into the brooder in the garage, I HATED it. I still miss having them in here with me. But we still go out and play with them. Once the kids are asleep, I go spend a chunk of time just sitting with them, watching them, talking to them.

    I know I'll be a nervous wreck come coop time, even though our coop is as safe as we can make it. What's easing some of that for me (and makes me WANT to get them out full time) is that they have SO much fun playing out there during the day. They LOVE it. And they hate the brooder. I think they are really bored. They have plenty of space, but not much to do in it. Outside there is grass to run in/peck at, bugs to find, dirt to scratch, leaves to play with, plants to hide behind. I agree that I'm worried, but I feel like our entire coop is safe, and our hen house is as tight as my hubby can build (complete with insulation for our cold nights & winters). I know they will be safe out there, although I still worry.

    I understand what you are saying. I love my chicks. But we all need fresh air and sunshine, including them. Have they spent any time outside, getting used to their run? Maybe you could have them out there for a little while during the day, check on them all you need to, and then bring them back in later in the day? That way you can sort of ease into it. And really when they are in the run, I get to spend time with them because it's right next to my garden. They watch me and talk to me. The kids and I sit in the run with them, giving them tidbits and holding them. We all get a kick out of it when the entire flock comes flapping and running over to us.

    There are people on here who have house chickens, and that seems to work great for them.. I'd try it with my favorite pullet to be honest, but my hubby would hate me for it!

    Good luck. I don't think it's easy for most of us. But I think it is wonderful that you love your babies, and shouldn't feel crazy for it!

  8. DuckLady

    DuckLady Administrator

    Jan 11, 2007
    NE Washington State
    You won't sleep the first night. Best to go to bed fully clothed so you can check on them 50 times in the night, like I did.
    After that, you will get more and more sleep each night, because you will realize that you are annoying the chicks when you go out there and shine a light in their faces as you count them and you will space out your visits. After a week, they will sleep in their roosts and you will sleep fine in your bed.
    Going out early to share a cuppa coffee with them is always a good way to start the day. [​IMG]
  9. justusnak

    justusnak Flock Mistress

    Feb 28, 2007
    South Eastern Indiana
    Do you have a baby monitor!?? This way you can listen for trouble. Im sure they will be ok...try not to fret too much.
  10. naturemom

    naturemom Songster

    May 28, 2007
    northern IL
    A baby monitor! What a great idea! I have a long-range monitor that I have hardly used with my human babies because my house is too small to need it. Maybe I'll have to set it up in the chicken coop once the chicks are old enough to go out there. Oh wait, by then we'll be in a bigger house and I might need it inside. Maybe I'll have to have 2.

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