Not even sure where to post this -- post-attack chicken trauma?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by FriscoRaven, Jul 31, 2013.

  1. FriscoRaven

    FriscoRaven Out Of The Brooder

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    I am beside myself, crying all dang day.

    Last night, a fox burrowed under my outdoor run wall and got inside. I had not secured the door between the coop and the run enough apparently, because the fox got inside. I accept complete responsibility for this, so please, don't give me a hard time about my shortcomings.

    You can imagine what happened :(

    I have one chicken who survived .. how? I have no idea. She doesn't appear to have any injuries .. a few feathers missing, but no apparent cuts or lacerations.

    I only had 7 chickens to start with and am now down to 1.

    My chickens free ranged in the afternoons until bedtime. I let out my lone chicken this afternoon, and she fought very hard against going back to the coop at bedtime. I don't know if it's trauma, or if she relied on the other chickens to lead the way or what.

    I eventually went out and picked her up off the garden fence she had perched on and carried her back. She fell asleep in my arms and just seemed so relaxed. I felt bad putting her back in the coop .. the scene of the slaughter :(

    I know I'm being dramatic and probably over-sensitive .. but these chickies were my very first and were more pets than anything else. They were just hatched in March and hadn't even laid their first eggs yet.

    Anyway .. on to my question .. will she be okay by herself? I'm trying to find her some new flock-mates, but it's proving to be very difficult to find chickens around her age. Most people around here are only selling babies, and while I do plan to rebuild my flock, I don't know that small chicks is the way to go right now.

    Has anyone dealt with this before? Can anyone suggest what to do?
     
  2. ten chicks

    ten chicks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My condolences,my chickens are my babies so i understand how you feel. I would bring her inside your home,keep her in a cage. She will definitely be stressed and afraid by herself. If you cannot find hens her age,i would try chicks,she may be fine with them. Keep in mind the quarantine rule. Keep her inside,it may take her awhile to get back to normal,do not expect much from her.

    I would be crying all day also. You are not being dramatic,i love all my chickens,in fact they are in the house right now,they love to cuddle and watch television.
     
    Last edited: Jul 31, 2013
  3. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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    You need to let people know you are looking for healthy chickens--where do you live? There are some very generous people here on BYC that may have some hens the same age as the ones you lost. I give chickens away to people who are interested in raising chickens, and this time of year people are thinking about thinning out their breeder flocks. Try posting in your local state thread here on BYC.
     
  4. pfarrell442

    pfarrell442 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    We lost a chicken to a hawk. I know how sensitive chickens are and this attack happened OUTSIDE their coop. Personally I would bring your chick inside and keep her comfortable. She's as much in shock as you are. I have brought chickens inside, used a laundry basket and had a long cookie sheet on one end to hold up a towel creating a tent effect. She needs to be calm as do you. make sure she has water. more than likely you will be up parts of the night checking on her .... you both need quiet and rest. I have no idea how she will react to going back to the coop when its time.... but not tonight, maybe not tomorrow night. and i agree with the others... get her some company. healthy and her size.

    i have read that chickens can really get sick from the stress of that kind of slaughter.... keep an eye on your girl. even when she's outside....

    i am so sorry for your loss. i am now going to check the door on my coop. tomorrow i am reinforcing the bottom part of their kennel.
     
  5. pfarrell442

    pfarrell442 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    dang. me again. if it were me, i'd bring my girl inside until i had new pals for her. even if it took a week or longer. just be sure to have her drink and have lots of towels to keep her bedding clean. you have work to do.
     
  6. FriscoRaven

    FriscoRaven Out Of The Brooder

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    I brought her in to my sunroom. I don't really have an adequate cage to keep her indoors with my cats and dogs, but it's a closer, different, and definitely secure environment for her.

    Thank you all for your kind words!
     
  7. ten chicks

    ten chicks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    You could also give her a child proof stuffed animal to snuggle up with.
     
  8. pfarrell442

    pfarrell442 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    since you will probably not sleep well, just check on her. no need to disturb her, just let her hear you breathe. if she is okay with being picked up like mine was they do like to lay on your chest and relax to your breathing. i would just worry about her state and sense of fear with all that has happened. be strong, calm, stable and keep an eye on her and yourself. you've had an awful awful experience. take care of your 7th girl. good night. i love the idea of a soft babyproof doll.
     
  9. angel8035

    angel8035 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'm sorry for your loss :( I came home from the hospital where my baby was in the NICU to find the solid wood wall ripped off my coop and 7 of my 8 original chickens were just puffs of feathers scattered around my property. I too had one lone survivor, somehow, who was pecking around the coop unharmed. Obviously I did not leave her in the torn open coop, but moved her into a dog kennel in my garage and during the day put her in the yard in a wire pen (with adequate shade). We discovered that our culprit was a large black bear and have since installed a strong electric fence around the run and coop. I adopted some ex-battery hens to live with my girl and they get along very well (though the original hen did peck at the new ones a few times it never got violent at all). You may want to consider a low hot wire around the bottom of your coop so if that fox comes back he gets a zap when he tries to dig in. Good luck with your survivor and sorry again that you have to go through this. I think it is something that, unfortunately, every chicken owner will one day face.
     
  10. Vegan

    Vegan Out Of The Brooder

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    My condolences, too.
    It seems to me that chickens have excellent memories, so some time in the sunroom sounds great. I like the idea of a stuffed animal. The closest thing I have seen in shape is a stuffed owl. Probably way easier to find than a chicken. I also support the idea of getting ex-battery hens, where you will be truly saving the lives of those you rescue.
    It seems that predators are very interested in our pets, unfortunately.
     

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