Keeping a single rooster- ok or cruel?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Melzawelza, Jun 23, 2007.

  1. Melzawelza

    Melzawelza In the Brooder

    Jun 10, 2007
    Hi everyone!

    I've been looking after a chick i named bobby. He was sold as a rooster and i'm pretty sure that he will be one. Looks like he is a RIR.

    I'd like to keep him if things work out, but im worried about his happiness. There's no chance of getting any hens, so if i was to keep him, he'd be on his own. Of course i'd give him attention whenever i could, but i dont know whether they are like other birds that can be kept as single pets.

    IF it is ok to keep him alone, would this avoid the 'mean rooster' stage that some go through? He is the sweetest little thing now, and thinks i am his mummy, and i'm worried he'll suddenly turn horrible when he grows up.

    Also, i live in a residential area and am worried about crowing. I have been told that if you keep their roosting area only head hight they do not crow as they can't stretch their necks. I thought of this as a possibility but would that be considered cruel or diminish his quality of life?

    I also dont have a fenced in backyard and on the odd occasion a local dog has strolled into our yard. i'm worried that this could be a risk for him and couldnt handle finding him dead one day. I live in australia so no risk of racoons, foxes etc but we do have possums that live on our property.

    any imput would be much appreciated!
  2. Gidday from another Aussie,
    I would definately build a pen and get him some friends to play with.
    I like to see all animals in pairs so their instincts can kick in and they can communicate with likeminded souls!!
    We have lots of other predators here like owls, foxes, hawks, eagles and dogs of course!
    It is really easy to build a little pen with chicken wire, star pickets and an old wooden box or wardrobe.
    Ive made a few and it's fun even if you have to re-do things until you get it right.
    Thats just my opinion but I know he would like some company!!
    Good luck
  3. justusnak

    justusnak Flock Mistress

    Feb 28, 2007
    South Eastern Indiana
    Personally, I feel it would be cruel to keep him in the conditions you described. Not allowing him to stretch or crow? Thats what roosters do! They need company, they are flock animals. My honest opinion.....give him to someone that has ample room,and friends for him. Maybe you can get a bunny? They are quiet..and easy to care for.
  4. corancher

    corancher Songster

    Apr 18, 2007
    Agree with the other two post. I believe he needs at least one buddy.
  5. Melzawelza

    Melzawelza In the Brooder

    Jun 10, 2007
    Thanks for the replies everyone!

    so it seems chickens are different in that you cant keep them by themselves and just have them bond to you like the usual pet birds? My other two birds don't have another of their kind but have plenty of attention from me [​IMG]

    I want to clarify too that i dont mean to keep him in a place where he cant stretch his neck all the time, only at night so that he doesnt crow at 4 in the morning! I'd have a full pen where he can flap and run for the daytime. But like i said before, i'd been told that, but was unsure of the ethics of it.

    Of course i'll always do the best for him, if i cant keep him with him being a happy bird i'll have to give him to someone else. breaks my heart though [​IMG] i'm also so worried that whoever i give him to will eat him!!
  6. BeckyLa

    BeckyLa Songster

    Jan 11, 2007
    N. Louisiana
    Just get him a couple of ladies and he'll be quite content! Chickens are flock birds and need company and roos need someone to take care of.
  7. akcskye

    akcskye Songster

    Apr 11, 2007
    I'm not really understanding why you'd be able to keep a roo, but not hens.

    The best way to your neighbors' hearts in regards to your rooster would be some free eggs now and then (hint hint).

    Of course, hens don't need a rooster to lay...which is a common misconception that those that don't have chickens think...but, being you already have the roo...the hens wouldn't mind having a protector.

    As for the neck stretching, when my roo, Billy, was alive, he'd crow, whether his space was ample or not. I say this meaning they had a FULL sized shed to roost in...but if he got in a spot with his ladies that was close quarters, he'd still crow.

    As long as you give him plenty of attention, I don't think it'd be cruel...but I guess what I'm saying is that if you already have the roo, invest some time and space for some hens, for the reason above...eggs to "make peace" with those neighbors who might not like to hear him crow.

    Good luck!
  8. Melzawelza

    Melzawelza In the Brooder

    Jun 10, 2007
    Guys, i cant get hens. i dont have the space or the capacity for more than one chicken in my backyard, and im not interested in a flock, it's only this little guy that i'm in love with [​IMG] I'm battling with my parents to just be able to keep him let alone a flock of chickens!
  9. Frozen Feathers

    Frozen Feathers Songster

    May 4, 2007
    Well, maybe you could get a pair of bantam hens instead, like some OEGB or some Seramas, even Silkies, and find him a home where he can have girls of his own. Chickens need a flock in order to feel safe and happy. They are highly social...with other chickens. They can be people friendly, that's for sure, but they aren't like parrots or cockatiels where they can be happy with just human interaction.
  10. birdlover

    birdlover Songster

    Jan 11, 2007
    Northern Va.
    Well, I was thinking about the possibility of you keeping him in the house (wearing a diaper) but then you mentioned your parents so I'm sure that'll go over like a lead balloon. If you want my honest opinion, start looking now for the best home in the world for him (lots of hens and no other roosters and an owner that will love him like you do is the best) and arrange to give him up when he starts crowing or sooner. That's REAL love...letting something go for their own good even though it breaks your heart. Good luck!


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