I know this sounds like a far fetch idea but my daughter and I wanted to keep our roo Don; who we thought was a Dot. We discussed culling any of the pullets we bought at first sign of crowing as not to disturb our neighbors. I read stories of how a lot of people at the larger factory breeder places cull the roos because they sell more hens. And how people give up on having their roos because of many reasons. So we thought if there was a way to train a roo not to crow.... maybe people wouldn't be so negative and they wouldn't have to get rid of one of the best things about owning chickens. We kept on reading up on roo behaviors...we found out that some people found that they said that roos crow because of first light, they inherited crowing, the only way to stop it is by an operation, but nothing about trying to teach it something different. So we gave it a go. Our pullets were born on February 15th of this year. We got Don first when he was about two months old. He was the only one we had for the first week. We did what you would normally do when you get pullets but we handled him a lot. When I say a lot I mean a most constantly. Sitting on our shoulders was not uncommon when in or out of the house. And he was given treats. One thing about treats that work in our favor is if you find their favorite it makes things a lot easier. When handling the 'girls' we would call them we have our own call we use for treats or food call in general around feeding time. This is the same time every day; so as to develop a routine. And to make sure there is a response you need them to come to you when called, even if you don't have treats, they should follow you anyway. Everyone has to be there before food or treats are given. When they were younger; we would always put them on our laps and we would somewhat cover them with the upper half of our bodies. Almost like leaning over them and giving a hug. Kind of what the hen does when she goes to sit and a chick or two would be under her. Not heavy or full weight on top of them. As they get older and bigger this is only done occasionally as needed. If we wore a jacket on early mornings get cool here, the flaps of the jacket would hang down a bit like wings we when squatted and sometimes when in the yard the 'girls' would walk under us or under the flaps and peep out. We brought them outside every morning around 5-6 am walked around with them, showed them were the worms were, scratched, pecked ( using our hand closed like a beak), and called to them if we found or brought anything tasty into the yard for them. As close to what the hen or roo would do when foraging. This is to try to establish you dominance. We are recognized as part of the flock. All this sounds strange but we became part of the pecking order and we are the top rung of the ladder. Well, we expected Don to crow round 5 months like people had told me he would...nothing. I thought we were sleeping late or something so I began to wake at 4 am to wait to see if I heard anything...nothing. Six months rolled around...and I heard his first attempt. Now in most cases when one roo crows they all crow, or the top roo will start chest bumping and fighting the other roo but I didn't want him to crow. I walked out there and hissed at him and yes I told him 'No'. Now I know he is not a dog but all animals can hear and he has heard me say 'No' and hiss at the dogs and cat. And yes all my chickens and dogs and cat socialize together. But yes he did stop immediately. Once everyone was quiet, I waited a bit and then called everyone to breakfast -treats were past out. That was the first week of August. Now the day before yesterday I over slept do to a sinus headache, Don of course does not, he noticed, and after attempting to wake me by knocking on the kitchen door, my daughter said he crowed once just after 6 am. My daughter had let them out they protested her not going outside and they came back in a few times to peck at the door again. Now I know what older roos go through when they run out of energy. Yesterday I was lagging and Don let me know it. One kind of half-hearted crow to get up and I went onto the porch were he stopped and looked at me and waited. I was moving too slow for him...due to sinus medication. I usually walk around outside with them and the dogs in the yard before I go back in to feed myself and get coffee. He was going to make sure I enjoyed the morning if it killed him he persisted till I went outside like I usually do and walked the yard. He followed behind. Today, he actually waited til I was up and awake in the kitchen making breakfast before he crowed. It was just at 6 am. Each of these times I hissed at him and said 'No' he stopped. Until this morning he changed his routine. He crowed after I was awake and everyone got treats. So he seems to be waiting to see what I do now before he does crow. I still hiss at him and say 'No'. He does stop. And he doesn't crow for the rest of the day. But he learned and is trying to adjust around my habits now. Who knew they were this smart.....hope I can use that to my advantage. We will keep trying......back to the drawing board.