Feather picking help - Blu-Kot? Something else?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by blueskye78, Jun 16, 2017.

  1. blueskye78

    blueskye78 In the Brooder

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    Apr 27, 2017
    i have three hens - 2 feather pick the third one. I've put peepers on the two aggressors but they still pick at the bare spots on her when they are in close proximity - while dust bathing under the coop, or "relaxing". How can I protect the area until feathers grow back?
    They have plenty of room to roam, shade, food, water, etc. it seems like just a habit at this point and I'm hoping something like Blu-Kot could work, although it seems like reviews are mixed? Please help.
     
  2. Wyorp Rock

    Wyorp Rock Enabler

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    Southern N.C. Mountains
    Hi @blueskye78 :frow Welcome To BYC

    What type of food/treats do you feed?

    You can try Blu Kote or Pick No More to see if it helps, I too see have mixed reviews, some say it works, but others say it encourages picking:( I do use it occasionally, but usually it is on cuts or to help hide an abrasion, etc., not to cover up anything that is actively being sought after.

    There can be several reasons for feather picking - boredom, habit, nutritional deficiency.
    Try providing them with something to pick at like a hanging cabbage/apple - something they like that will take their focus off her. Sometimes not enough protein in the diet can be an issue as well - especially if you see these 2 eating the feathers. Give extra protein like egg, tuna, mackerel or meat in addition to their normal feed. Limit treats to no more than 5-10% of daily intake so protein content isn't diluted.

    If it's habit, then you have a behavioral problem. That can sometimes be harder to correct. Usually what is recommended it to separate the offender. I would not separate the one being plucked, you don't want to disrupt her status. You could try caging both the offenders separately while letting pickedongirl have free reign.

    Another thought is chicken saddles - it may cover enough to deter the feather picking. If the shafts of the feathers are still in the skin, she won't grow new feathers until she molts. If you get saddles I put saddles on all 3, this way she's no the odd hen.

    Just some thoughts.
     

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