Hubby built me a secure Run (8' x 12') for my 4 chickens (2 RIR & 2 EE, 24wks March 30th). I'm using a large plastic dog house as their "coop/nest box". Had a tray that I filled top soil in for their dust bath which they'd sit in but never bathe. Two just started laying, I was told to add another nesting option so I emptied out the dirt & added shavings. They've been in it, laid once but prefer the house & the two are laying in it daily. I let them "free range" in the afternoons when I'm home.... 1. I'm be going on a 3wk trip to visit Grandkids this Summer, Hubby will be feeding/cleaning my chickens although I know his "cleaning" won't be up to my standards. I clean poop in their Run & walk the yard/patio for poop daily, we live in a residential area and don't want to upset neighbors with smell. QUESTION: Would it be ok to keep the chickens in the Run & not let them out? Don't want them killing each other... 2. IF when the other two start laying & IF all continue to lay only in the house, do they need a second option for a nest box? I was thinking IF they prefer the house, I'm going to convert the 'spare' nest back to a dust bath. Your opinions would be greatly appreciated.