Is Gracie depressed?


10 Years
Jan 4, 2010
somewhere in Pa
All gracie does now is stand on one legwith her head under her wing all day and when i go up to the coop she sits on my lap and does tyhe same. She has a beautiful song but she never uses it. when i bring up treats she doesnt come very fast. she is always the last hen to get of her roost every morning. Could it be because of her best friend clever? About a month and a half ago clever was eaten by a hawk. ever since gracie isnt gracie, she used to be happy but now she is just sad... It doesnt help that its winter and there is no bugs to chase... poor gracie will she be okay?

This is gracie when she was happy:
Chickens are not humans, they do not have the same emotional reactions. They don't experience depression. They don't mourn. They really don't even remember a companion after a short time--if you separate some birds from a flock for a few weeks and then return them, the rest of the flock won't greet them as missing friends, they will harrass them as though they were complete strangers.

She might be sick. The behavior you describe is very typical of a sick bird. Is she old? Old birds become less active, especially at the very end of their lives. Does she have other chickens to socialize with? Chickens don't do well alone, they are social animals. If she has other chickens around, are they picking on her?
She has plenty of other girls around her in fact grace is head hen no one will touch gracie and if the do thed better expect the same in turn no not very old at all and she never has really enjoyed winter she is only 2 she eats and drinks and according to every one else on back yard chickens if a hen eats and drinks there cant be anything seriously wrong with them...and i dont necesarly belive that they wont remember others they have lived with because i had to take peep out of the flock for almost a week and a half and when i put her back in the flock no one pecked her and she ressumed hanging out with curious her best friend...
When our head hen died, our flock went through (what us humans would call) depression for over a month...if not several months. They really seemed to be lost and much more scared.

But your girl does honestly sound sick. The head under the wing thing indicates "feeling yucky". See if you can get a look at several of her poops...that is usually very telling and helpful for diagnosing.

You might want to bring her in the house for a day of observation. See how interested she is in the really good treats. Treats out weigh "depression" every time. Even if she is sad about her best friend being gone she would dive in to the yummies. If she isn't all over the treats, she doesn't feel good. (and again, watch her poo)
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We had to get rid of two of our roosters and my one hen started acting strange and weird. She is doing a bit better now, but I still worry about her. All signs are good though.

We also had to get rid of one of our hens because she was being a monster, we took her to the farm where our other rooster is at. He wasnt getting along with the others in the flock but now that he has his girlfriend back he is happy and is actually crowing now!

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