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Can I leave my 4 hens in their coop for 3 days over Thanksgiving?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by hamellott, Nov 20, 2009.

  1. hamellott

    hamellott In the Brooder

    Jun 10, 2009
    My family is counting on us being present for Thanksgiving in PA, twelve hours away. This is our first year with chickens (just 4 of them) and I am fretting leaving them for 3 days cooped up. I'm sure they will be fine with plenty of food and water, but I guess I just worry they will be unhappy and bored. They are used to getting out at least for a while each day. I don't have anyone to check on them during this time. I plan to unplug the light we usually have on for a few hours in the late afternoon, just for safety reasons. Any ideas or thoughts on this? We will have a heated water dish that comes on only if temps dip below freezing. Thank you!

  2. toletiquesbysam

    toletiquesbysam Songster

    Sep 19, 2008
    If you are worried about boredom, put in some suet blocks or hang a cabbage, but otherwise as long as you have plenty of food/water they should be just fine! We leave ours for the weekends alot over the summer and plan on doing the same this Thanksgiving!
  3. hamellott

    hamellott In the Brooder

    Jun 10, 2009
    Oh, thank you. Would this just be the suet from the grocery store like I buy for my little feeder birds?
  4. bufforp89

    bufforp89 Songster

    Jul 26, 2009
    Chenango Forks NY
    I have used the suet from the grocery store and they love it! I also agree with hanging them up and a cabbage as well. I had to leave my chickens in their coop for 2 days and they were fine. I also got some of the cat balls from the petstore that you can put treats in through a hole. They roll if around and the treats fall out. I put whole corn in a few and tossed them in and they were a big hit too. Im sure your chickies will be fine! Mine were.
  5. Nyrial

    Nyrial Songster

    Aug 4, 2009
    Lake Stevens, WA
    Oh, just take them with you [​IMG]

    ETA: Not very constructive I know, but something I would totally do.

    Seriously though, I felt guilty locking mine up for the day yesterday when we were supposed to have high winds. I gave them cabbage heads to play with.
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2009
  6. gkeesling

    gkeesling Songster

    Nov 24, 2008
    Hagerstown, IN
    These are chickens - not children. Just be sure they have adequate food and water and the coop is securely shut. They will be just find for a few days.
  7. HEChicken

    HEChicken Crowing

    Aug 12, 2009
    BuCo, KS
    My Coop
    Does your coop have windows? Mine doesn't, so I'm concerned about leaving them for our out of town ski trip next Spring. Since my coop doesn't have windows, I don't feel I can leave them locked up the whole time I'm gone. I plan on talking to a neighbor who has fed my cat in the past, to see if she'd be willing to open the coop in the morning to let them out and come back after dark to shut them back in. I'm hoping that if she gets to keep any eggs they lay during that time she won't mind too much....

  8. horsejody

    horsejody Squeaky Wheel

    Feb 11, 2008
    Waterloo, Nebraska
    You could also get a pumpkin and cut it in half and leave it in there. Mine love picking those apart.
  9. hamellott

    hamellott In the Brooder

    Jun 10, 2009
    Thank you all for your ideas and words of comfort. I feel better now about leaving them. Yes, my coop has a very large window, so that is a good thing. Like my sister told me, "They're chickens! Their brains are the size of peas and they won't know how long you've been gone!" BUT, even so if they weren't so big and dirty I probably would consider taking them with us!
  10. Chicksdigit

    Chicksdigit Songster

    Apr 5, 2009
    Tool, Texas
    If it is raining like today I don't let them out they go out and stand in the rain and get chilled.
    But I have a fairly good sized coop and they have plenty of room to walk around and lots of ventilation.

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