Divided Flock of 4 hens, one hen recently killed, now loner hen is having a really hard time. PLEASE

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Sunflower85, Sep 13, 2012.

  1. Sunflower85

    Sunflower85 New Egg

    Sep 13, 2012
    Hello All!

    I would like to preface this by saying this is my first experience raising chickens!

    We initially started out with 3 female chicks, my dog (a stubborn bloodhound) dug her way through the backyard into the front yard and killed one of the chicks when she was about 1month old. I was devastated to say the least. After discussing with my partner, we decided two hens weren't going to be quite enough. A few days later my partner brings home 2 barred rock chicks. We quarantined them and then slowly introduced them by letting them hang out outside together. When the chicks were big enough we put them outside full time. They all seemed to tolerate each other very well but were definitely always two separate groups. Then much to our horror the 2 barred rocks decided to sleep outside of the coop one night in the bushes (they had never done this before!). In all honesty our coop just wasn't quite big enough for four hens. But again this is our first experience. We normally let the big dogs into the front yard at night when the chickens are in their coop. Consequently, my bloodhound stumbled upon one of the chickens and killed her instantly.

    Since then the two original hens haven't picked on the remaining barred rock but she remains by herself all the time. She avoids feeding with them and hesitates to get in the coop at night. Recently she has even started jumping the fence!! It is obvious that she is miserable and I just don't know what to do. My heart breaks for her. We don't have space to really expand the flock, but if getting her another hen will help, we just might make do. I should also add, the white leghorn (one of the two from the original flock) is by far the dominant hen. I was thinking about maybe removing her for a few days/week?! Would that help. Although, I don't really know what'd I'd do with her for that time...

    I'm at a loss and it's very important that my chickens are happy and healthy.

    Please help!!
  2. Y N dottes

    Y N dottes Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 1, 2012
    South Central WI
    I would definetly get another chicken to be friends with the lone one.....they may not be friends right away, but they will get the idea eventually
  3. galanie

    galanie Treat Dispenser No More

    Aug 20, 2010
    Either find a home where there's others to make friends with or get a grown hen. I had a loner that I sold and she's doing great in that other flock. Getting a new one might do the trick too as it also will be not accepted and so might bond.
  4. Sunflower85

    Sunflower85 New Egg

    Sep 13, 2012
    Ok thank you!! I will look into getting another chicken. I'm not sure that I'd be able to find a flock to give her to.

    Do either of you have any idea how long it might take for them to bond? Should I just put the new hen in the yard after her quarantine is done or introduce the loner and the new one separately before putting her in the yard? The last thing I need is TWO loner chickens!!!

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