how do you socialize a chick?


11 Years
Nov 6, 2008
i just hatched my indoor chick othello and im kind of nervous to socialize it. it'll follow my hand around the brooder (along with his brother or sisters) but he chirp whenever i touch him. i really want him to like me. i hatched him out yesterday night and someone is coming to pick up 2 of his sibs' tomorrow. any advice?
First off, this may just be me, but I really don't handle them much for about 3-4 days.
After that, I hold them, talk to them in the brooder and pet them.
The biggie comes when they are(for me) about a month old and you can give them treats! Trust me, it'll LOVE you once you start giving treats.
Congrats on the chicks!
I'm actually not much of a handler either. When mine were chicks, I spent lots of time watching them and talking to them, and when they are bigger, offered them treats on my hand. Now that they are grown and free-ranging my backyard, they treat me as the flock leader, running to me whenever I go out in the backyard and milling around so close I have to be careful not to step on them. If I had to, I could pick one up but - I don't really need to so just kind of....don't. They will occasionally jump up onto me though.
Well, my daughter handles the chicks more than I do. I am always around them though so they really arent frightened of me.
I have noticed there are some breeds that seem to be more easy to "socialize" than others? The most success I have had with friendly chicks are silkies, cochins and EEs.
Even spending time around them is good. They WILL get to know where their food comes from,lol, and that always makes them friendlier.
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My silkies,and BO were really cuddley, 'till they realized they were roos and got too cool to be held. Of my girls, only the RIR is particualrly cuddly, thought the others will allow if
they are forced to. I guess it depends on your priorities. I really wanted friendly chickens so my friends could see how cool they are, so I handled them quite a bit. But I agree-it seems like the breed has a lot to do with it. (?)
i'm sure both ways work (handling them early vs. later)....but i remember when i chose a couple pets out of an order of 50 when i was a teenager, i handled those chicks from day one and they were wonderful pets! on the flip side, my mom got ONE BR chicken as a going away present when we moved out to the country (when i was 11) and she was a pullet at the time. i didn't get to spend any time with her till she was older of course, and again, great pet! i would take a walk around with her out in the field and we would work as a tag team for the grasshopper treats. if i found one, i would stomp my foot to smash it, and she knew what that meant! she would come running with wings spread out a bit. ah the memories of Clara Clucker! good luck with othello!
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put food in your hand on the bottom of brooder and tap fingernail making pecking sound they come right away mine wouldnt even get close before i tryed this. Move slow
I'm having the same situation. My girls are about a week old today, and still scurry and scatter when they hear loud noises or I cough. They're in the bathroom, so maybe it just echoes a lot? They seem so skittish! I handle them at least twice a day, and make sure to hold everyone for a few minutes each (I have 12, a mix of BO, BA, RIR, BR, and EE). The Buff Orps are so sweet and let me handle them, as are the EE. The Barred Rocks scream bloody murder whenever I put my hand in the brooder or take them out! The Blk Aussies are hit or miss, but won't fall asleep in my hands like the RIR or BO.

So is it advisable to keep handling them while they're chicks, or not worry about it until they're a month old? They don't seem to be particularly food driven yet...a couple RIR and BO would eat out of my hands, but the others mostly scurry away. I thought socializing had to happen early? Any more advice would be great!! Thanks guys!!
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