Chicks underfoot!

Stephine

Songster
May 30, 2016
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Sonoma
My chicks are a bit too happy to see me. They went out into their coop a couple of weeks ago (they are13 weeks old) and now when they hear me coming they all stand at the door hoping for treats. I can not open the door without them running around me (and one always makes it out and then can't figure out how to get back in, so I end up chasing one chicken around each time). Once in, I can't walk because they are on my feet, literally, and all around me, as in surrounding me completely, standing no more than an inch away. I have started to out a treat down in the run after opening the door to get them to run over there - but that's when Whoever escaped this time is frantically running up and down the fence to get to the treat as they can't find their way back through the door again. So then I have to catch that chick and carry it back through the door. By the time that is done at least three or four of them are ready to turn their full attention to me again. Twice in two days I have kicked one of them accidentally because they are running between my legs, even though I am walking so slowly and carefully.
Trouble is I have to go into the run to give them fresh water and cold treats a few times a day now that it is so hot. What can I do?
 
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Pork Pie

Flockwit
Premium Feather Member
6 Years
Jan 30, 2015
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Maybe try throwing some scratch away from the doorway just as you enter the coop :idunno
 

aart

Chicken Juggler!
Premium Feather Member
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Nov 27, 2012
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My Coop
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Do they have feed full time...or is feeder empty by the time to come out to feed?
Do you give treats or feed every time you go into coop?

Fill feeder each day with just a little more than they eat in 24 hours,
so they aren't 'starving' when you go out to top off feeder.

Go out to coop regularly without dispensing any treats....keep 'em guessing ;-).

I'd maybe walk a little less carefully, swing your feet wide until they learn to stay away from them.
Giving them a gentle 'boot' won't hurt them, but will teach them to be wary.
Mine know if I move my foot towards them they better get out of the way.
 

Stephine

Songster
May 30, 2016
923
558
219
Sonoma
Do they have feed full time...or is feeder empty by the time to come out to feed?
Do you give treats or feed every time you go into coop?

Thank you! Yes, I see where you're coming from and you are right. It has been really hot here and I try not to disturb them too much so they don't heat themselves up more by running around when I visit, yet, I have been going to see them to give them cold treats (watermelon, cucumber, icewater with blueberries) to help them cool down - and of course for fresh water and feeder refilling. So, yes, the way that worked out was that EVERY time they saw me I had an exciting treat for them. Nice conditioning. Now it's a bit cooler so I can visit more. I hope that will help. But they of course can see when I have treats with me and then we're back to crowding. Alao I have to go into their run a bit so I can make two or three different treat spots for them so everyone has a chance to get some...

Fill feeder each day with just a little more than they eat in 24 hours,
so they aren't 'starving' when you go out to top off feeder.

- They usually have food in their feeder all day, but they still get excited for refills as they pick out their favorite bits first...

Go out to coop regularly without dispensing any treats....keep 'em guessing ;-).

I'd maybe walk a little less carefully, swing your feet wide until they learn to stay away from them.
Giving them a gentle 'boot' won't hurt them, but will teach them to be wary.
Mine know if I move my foot towards them they better get out of the way.

- I have started giving them little nudges and they move away a bit. What gets me is when I walk away from them and they are behind me but then one runs through my legs mid step! Waaahh! Both times they gave a loud appalled squawk, so hopefully at least those two learned their lesson!
Thanks again! I will work on being less interesting now that it isn't as hot anymore! (not hot here is anything under 92...
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)
 
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