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Does isolating a chicken cause emotional distress?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by aug251945, May 4, 2017.

  1. aug251945

    aug251945 In the Brooder

    Mar 3, 2012
    I just bought a new teenage chicken. I put her in our old hen house thinking I would keep her away from my flock until I knew for sure she was healthy. But I feel really bad for her. She is all alone and seems so frightened. I bought her from a guy who had a million birds. His Craigslist ad seemed like she was on a sweet little hobby farm but the more I looked around the more and more and more birds I saw. Not to mention the 8 million babies they had in boxes in a shed. Yuck. But I had driven a long way to get her and I felt obligated to buy. I am not good at being rude to anyone's face. So with a net he caught her and off we went. And into isolation she has landed at my house. Today she must have flown out of the coop and one of my Great Pyrenees dogs caught her. I got the chicken from him and she is fine other then being even more stressed out. I clipped her wings on one side, and put chicken vet rx on her comb and under her neck feathers. I put her back into the old coop but I am wondering if I should just put her in my new coop and pasture so she can be around other chickens. Do chickens do poorly when they are isolated? I have had her for about 4 days now.


  2. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Chicken tender Premium Member

    Jul 16, 2015
    central Wisconsin
    You should always get at least 2 chickens at a time to give them a friend. Being alone is stressful, as well as being moved to another home. Chickens like everything the same.

    It all depends how you feel about quarantine, and keeping her away from your flock. I no longer bring in anything but chicks now to minimize exposing my birds to new illnesses. I personally don't see the sense to quarantine, but it's always recommended to do it.
  3. 21hens-incharge

    21hens-incharge Enabler Premium Member

    Mar 9, 2014
    Northern Colorado
    I agree with oldhenlikesdogs.

    The other issue with bringing in only one is that the existing flock with an existing pecking order then have one and only one target. It can make it impossible for her to integrate.

    A suggestion if I may....
    Putting one of your mid ranking hens from your existing flock in with her can do a few things. It will give her a mid level companion, it will reveal if she is ill. Sadly it puts your existing hen at risk. But it should help her......if they can get along.
    Last edited: May 4, 2017
  4. aug251945

    aug251945 In the Brooder

    Mar 3, 2012
    Thank you both very much!

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