Can chickens be depressed?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by ChickenDisaster, Jun 17, 2019.

  1. ChickenDisaster

    ChickenDisaster In the Brooder

    Jun 17, 2019
    So recently a dog attacked and killed 6 of my 7 5 week old chicks. The seventh one just turned up today (2 days later) and I’m kind of worried about her. She’s eating and drinking and is missing a few feathers she had on her wings/neck. But should I get new chicks so she won’t be lonely or...?
  2. Ninjasquirrel

    Ninjasquirrel Songster

    May 11, 2018
    You should get new chicks but only because you want more ;). She might be in shock. Just soothe her and she should come around
    Sequel likes this.
  3. azygous

    azygous Crossing the Road

    Dec 11, 2009
    Colorado Rockies
    How tragic! Dog attacks are among the worst chickens can suffer. And to lose them so young has to be tearing at your heart.

    Chickens need a flock. If this is a solitary chicken with no other chickens, while "depressed" isn't quite the accurate word, it will be unfulfilled. If you have adult chickens, that will suffice as a flock as the chick matures.

    If these seven chicks were all the flock you had, then it would be best for your surviving chick for you to get a few new chicks. But the new chicks likely won't ever bond with the older chick as they will with chicks they are brooded with. But they will all be a flock and derive security and a sense of well being from being part of multiple chickens.
  4. RhodeIslandRed5

    RhodeIslandRed5 Songster

    May 28, 2019
    East Texas
    Yes, chicken do get lonely. They are flock birds and very well know when members of their pecking order are missing. They must have companionship. Pet your chicken, and talk to her a lot. It helps mine when I'm transporting them and one is alone.
    Sequel and azygous like this.
  5. CarpCharacin

    CarpCharacin Cyprinus carpio

    Aug 17, 2016
    Salt Lake City, UT
    My Coop
    Sorry for your losses :(
    Chickens shouldn't be kept alone, they need to be kept in a flock.
    Sequel likes this.
  6. ChickenDisaster

    ChickenDisaster In the Brooder

    Jun 17, 2019
    Thank you guys for the help, it was most definitely needed!
    Sequel and CarpCharacin like this.
  7. ladybug3698

    ladybug3698 In the Brooder

    Feb 15, 2019
    Feed her treats and keep her in a nice warm box-if she is willing to be contained-one of our hens was attacked by a hawk and came out with minor scrapes and she displayed the same symptoms that you described. A few days and and a carton of oats with yogurt and she was as good as new. Definitely try to play mother hen with her and give her plenty of attention, while chickens do not grieve in the same way as we do she must be deeply hurt and frightened, so make sure she doesn’t spend too much time alone until you replace the flock. One of our girls was raised alone in the same way that you would raise a dog, and because of that constant affection she was just fine.
    azygous and ChickenDisaster like this.

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