Children and Chickens DO MIX!

Discussion in 'Random Ramblings' started by cheeptrick, Aug 6, 2007.

  1. cheeptrick

    cheeptrick Songster

    May 1, 2007
    New Hampshire
    I have 3 children aged 3, 5, and 7. I have found that most feel that children of this age should not be allowed around chickens. My children have always been VERY gentle with our day old chicks and now almost 17 week old chickens. We got them primarily because my husband and oldest are allergic to cats and dogs which saddened me so much because I realized that my children will never truly know the love of an indoor pet. So I ordered the chicks and I will never forget the looks on my childrenÂ’s faces (dh's face too was priceless) when they arrived in the mail. Not only has it taught them some very valuable lessons only learned from owning a pet; but it has given them a memory they will cherish for the rest of their lives. My family raised ducks when I was a child and I can still vividly remember holding the baby ducks in my tiny hands.
    I'm just so sad that most feel children cannot be taught to value life thru owning pets. We lost 2 chicks the first week and my children were very gentle and appropriately emotional when they passed. My 5 year old actually held the chick till it passed; his intestines were sticking out his tiny belly. I feel she learned something very good from this experience. My children help me feed, clean out the coop, and protect our 24 other chickens and spoil them more than I do. While I do value life, I also feel it is important to teach children about death and not to shield them from the inevitable.
    I'm sorry; I'm just tired of seeing it written that children/toddlers should not have access to chickens. I'm posting this in predators and pests because I couldn't think of a more appropriate place. [​IMG]
  2. FamilyOfChickens

    FamilyOfChickens Songster

    Mar 24, 2007
    Northwest Indiana
    I don't know anyone like that, who thinks children and chickens don't mix. If I did I'd ask them to come over to my house.

    I do almost all of the work involving the chickens. My brother occasionly helps, as does my sister. We've lost a few chickens, and everyone's been sad. Although my dad loves to joke about barbequing one, everybody- my siblings and I included- like them a lot.
  3. panner123

    panner123 Songster

    Jan 15, 2007
    Garden Valley, ca
    You can't keep my grand kids away from the chickens. When there are chicks around they completely forget their toys. Anyone that says kids don't learn from animals has never had children and pets. I have found that children around farm animals have a greater respect for life and more knowledge of death.
  4. cheeptrick

    cheeptrick Songster

    May 1, 2007
    New Hampshire
    Thank you Family of are my kind of family! I just read a huge article about this Woman who felt she was rescuing a baby chick from the pet store from a mother and her daughter! While baby chicks are delicate they are not fine china! Wonder what they'd think if they saw how the hatcheries throw them all around! [​IMG]
  5. PurpleChicken

    PurpleChicken Tolerated.....Mostly

    Apr 6, 2007
    [​IMG] Great Post!!! I couldn't agree more!!!
    Our chickens are part of our family.
  6. catballou24

    catballou24 In the Brooder

    Apr 25, 2007
    Austin, TX
    my girls love our chickens!! two of the roosters are their own individual pets..haha my girls are 4 and almost 2..[​IMG] they are super gentle around our flock and love to feed them and give them water..[​IMG] never a problem...[​IMG]
  7. Chelly

    Chelly Cooped Up

    May 11, 2007
    I can't wait to get my chicks, they ship from the hatchery in a couple of days.

    I took my kids to a feed store the other day to buy feed, and they had some baby keets - well my kids went all mushy and couldn't STAND not being able to touch them.

    My kids are almost 4 and 8 - they're going to LOVE "their" chickens! They love all animals, but we only have cats and fish as pets for now.

  8. MayberrySaint

    MayberrySaint Chillin' Out

    Mar 7, 2007
    Mount Airy, NC
    My "almost 3 yr old" toddler helps me collect eggs and count the chickens every night. He can also use a feed scoop and fill the hanging feeder. HOWEVER, I cannot take my eye off him when the flock is free-ranging. For some reason, my alpha roo has taken an extreme dislike to Silas and attacks him every chance he gets. Thank goodness he doesn't have any spurs yet. The other roo will bite his foot and try to mate him. Needless to say, he is very scared of the two roosters now.
  9. Backyard Buddies

    Backyard Buddies Songster

    Jan 11, 2007
    Orange County, CA
    Thanks for your post Cheeptrick. I couldn't agree more. My kids (12 and 9) LOVE their chickens! Not only do they take care of the chickens' needs, but they play with them, obsess about them, and talk about them constantly. One of our girls, an EE, is cautious and very particular about how she is held, but our 12 year old son can hold her any way he wants. She'll sit quietly in his lap while he gently swings her while he's sitting on the swing set. Every once in a while, all three of our girls will be in his lap while he's sitting. Both kids are often seen with a chicken in their arms. Like yours, we lost a couple of chicks in the first week. They shed tears and we buried them in the yard, complete with little brick tombstones. They still talk about what they think Helen 1 and Helen 2 would look like if they were still alive today.

    To them, this is not just a passing fancy. They talk all the time about where they will live when they grow up and how many and what kinds of chickens they'll own. Chickens have become a part of the fabric with which their lives have been woven. And together, our family has bonded in a way that we never would have known had chickens not become a part of our lives.

    I do have to say, however, that we didn't just plunge into this. Before getting the chickens, we learned about their needs. We ordered a couple of books, one of which was geared specifically for children, "Your Chickens: A Kids Guide to Raising and Showing." Then, we put it on hold and only after the kids kept pursuing the idea did we pick our babies and start building the coop. They've been involved in this from every step. We haven't shielded them from the pains and they've been there for every part of the joy. It's no wonder they've learned to respect the little lives they've been guarding from the very beginning.
  10. greenacre

    greenacre Songster

    Jun 30, 2007
    South Eastern Michigan
    We also have dog and cat allergies in our household, so we now have our pet chickens! The kids are very good about checking on them, reporting funny things to me, etc. I love it when they tell their friends about the chickens and they get all excited. A lot of neighbors kids and friends kids have never seen a chicken so it is a great learning experience for all. I can't tell you how many times I have heard, "I didn't know chickens were so cool" or "Wow, they really do have personalities" or "They are so fun to watch"!!!!

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