chickens laying elsewhere and no handling!

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8 Years
Mar 7, 2011

I have three chickens, Light Sussex, Leghorn and a Hybrid. Up to yesterday they have always laid in their nest box in their house but they found my dogs kennel yesterday which is full of straw and have decided they would prefer to lay there. I have today changed their nest box from wood shavings to straw and closed the door on the dogs kennel in a hope they will just return to the nest box - was this the right thing to to do or have I just made the situation worse and now they will head off somwwhere else completely and not know where they will go? also, they hate being picked up I know the Leghorns have always been difficult to pick up and they hate it but the other two breeds I thought didn't mind it, but as soon as I come anywhere near them they run away and I can't get anywhere near them - would just be nice if they were a little more friendly! I've had them for a year now and would have thought they would have been used to me by now.

any help would be much appreciated!
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