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How to reform a flogging rooster

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Balboaroc, Jul 18, 2009.

  1. Balboaroc

    Balboaroc Out Of The Brooder

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    I have a flock of 8 chickens that are 20 weeks tomorrow. My one remaining rooster (we started with 3) is a Buff Cochin which I love. The day we got rid of our other rooster he stepped up and started crowing and doing his rooster duties properly. The pullets love him, he shows them the food..its just a really good flock relationship I have right now. Compared to the rooster we got rid of, who was top rooster at the time and a tyrant who wouldn't let the flock out of the coop, we have a good thing here.

    So here's the issue that JUST cropped up the end of this week. I have 2 sons, one is 7, one is 2 1/2. Both came to me at some point last week and told me Elvis flogged them.

    Now I've told them both over and over and over not to aggravate the flock and they are pretty good about not doing it. I've also witnessed my older son chasing the flock. And chasing isn't quite the right word because they aren't running after them...but more like sneaking around and following them and of course the flock goes to get away. They aren't being completely left alone. So its like chasing but not chasing.

    So I witnessed the flogging tonight and trust me I know it could be a lot worse. My oldest was sneaking around where they all were and Elvis kinda flew up with his feet up at my son (didn't really hurt him just alarmed him) then chased him up to where I was farther up in the yard. Not 2 minutes later my son walked back down that way and peeked around the corner at him, jumped, and took off up the yard again with the rooster chasing him. I gotta be honest it was the funniest darned thing I ever saw.

    He will not flog me, nor my Mother, Husband, or Step-Dad so I know its due to the fact that my son is scared of him and he knows it. Also the fact that apparently he feels threatened by my son and knows he will run if chased. I have told my son this is basically brought on by himself and I had warned him over and over this could happen.

    I figure since this just started there are probably steps we could take so this doesn't continue. I do have a 2 1/2 year old that is much smaller and should this happen to him it could be worse and could get his eyes. Of course my younger boy couldn't push Elvis away like my 7 year old can. Elvis is quite a big boy!

    My thoughts are 1. Make sure the boys know to leave Elvis alone and not to chase nor aggravate him. 2. Help my son get to the point where he doesn't feel scared of Elvis anymore. Any suggestions with the second part? Right now the second the rooster catches the eye of my son he runs (my son...then depending on how close potentially the rooster). Its like reinforcing a bad thing with him running.

    As it is my son is having a drama moment and wants me to get rid of the rooster which I refuse to do. [​IMG] We plan on working with him and the rooster a little more and helping him to realize what a good guy we have for the girls.

    Anyhow any experiences or thoughts would be appreciated. You know I hate being an I told you so but I warned him....
     
  2. annanicole18

    annanicole18 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 16, 2009
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    hmm well its sometimes hard with kids to balace power. my dog had an issue with jumping so i had my neice and nephew spray her with a spray bottle and they ended up after awhile spraying her just cuz. but i think if watched whenever he goes around them a spritz with a spray bottle might make the rooster back off a bit but will not completely deter him so your son with learn to respect his and the girls space
     
  3. wolfie

    wolfie Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Your son has to show him he is the dominant roo so your son has to hold the roo for a good ten minutes a day but try the spray bottle also it just seems fun but I don't know if it will work [​IMG]
     
  4. Garden Gal

    Garden Gal Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 11, 2009
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    I think it is very important that your stop antagonizing the rooster - for the bird's sake as well as his own! If this rooster DOES get to him at some point, your son could be seriously injured and then it will all be the bird's fault!

    In my HO, I would sit your son down and calmly and unapologetically explain the rules have changed. He is NOT allowed to bother the chickens in any way; even playfully trying to get them to chase him because - this has dangerous ramifications. You could set up a "star chart" and he gets a star for every day he is successful at his new challenge, and after five stars gets a special treat, etc... However, ANY time he is caught enciting the rooster to chase him, he looses a priviledge for that day - and has to go to his room, or something along these lines. No exceptions, no teasing - period. (If he was teasing a dog who was growling and snapping, there would be no issue on trying to decide if we should be stopping the child from teasing...)

    The rooster is only doing what he is supposed to be doing - protecting his hens. The child is only doing what comes naturally - being a child, but it is important that he learn the right way to treat animals. I bet it won't take too many stars to see how great it is to leave the birds alone, OR too many hours alone in his room to figure it isn't worth the moment of teasing!
     
    1 person likes this.
  5. rottdog

    rottdog Out Of The Brooder

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    why don't you show him how to give the roo some treats that way the roo will look to him as a food source and not a threat....[​IMG]
     
  6. Balboaroc

    Balboaroc Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 2, 2009
    Carroll County, MD
    Thanks...these are a lot of great ideas.

    I've done a bit of reading on roosters and their habits and it does seem to me that my son has totally lost the Top Rooster vision in my roosters eyes. I may have my husband catch Elvis tomorrow and we can all pet him. At least maybe my son will see that he isn't a bad rooster and loose the fear aspect. I don't mind him being a little fearful of the rooster...I want him respectful of him.

    I also agree with the other poster...I know the aggravation has to stop, in all forms. We discussed tonight how he doesn't go to friend's houses and chase their dogs and how this is the exact same thing. The flock really is amazing right now and I don't want that to change. The girls, even Elvis, follow me around like dogs. They are so spoiled and come running to me for treats. I can even call them and they will come.

    This week I had 2 of my son's friends over on different days and both boys encouraged the "chasing-but-not-chasing". When I got on my son for it he said he knew it was wrong and tried to tell them that but they made him do it...which is another story of which we are working on [​IMG]. Of course when I saw what was going on I promptly called the flock back to the run where the boys couldn't attempt aggravation.

    I think what it comes down to is Elvis has had enough aggravation for one week and I don't blame him. I kinda wish it had been one of the friends chased and then they would know better. At any rate the new rule is no free ranging when friends are over and no agravation in any form is allowed.
     
  7. onthespot

    onthespot Deluxe Dozens

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    I reformed mine. I formed him into tamales. They were great!
     
  8. Big C

    Big C J & C Farms

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    The roo is mistaking your son(s) behavior as his own so he is just protecting his hens.
    IMO, your son should act toward the flock as you and everyone else does.
    Establish dominance and not "chase" the hens.
     
  9. Sitka

    Sitka Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Seattle, Washington
    Ah, Boys will be Boys and Roosters will be Roosters!

    I think you are on the right track with how you are handling it. When I went to live on my aunt and uncle's farm for a summer when I was ten I had to get a few talking-to's about chasing chickens myself. [​IMG]

    I think having your son pet Elvis is a good idea. Let him see that it is more fun for them to be buddies than chasing each other.

    When I read your post I was reminded of this video clip of boy vs. rooster. Seem familiar? [​IMG]

     
  10. Judy

    Judy Moderator Staff Member

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