playing/handling the chicks

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Kacey's Krazee's, Sep 4, 2009.

  1. Kacey's Krazee's

    Kacey's Krazee's Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 8, 2009
    Normangee, Texas
    I am a first time chick momma, and my girls are about 4 days old now.
    I have refrained from handling them since arrival, with the exception of dipping their beaks in the water when I put them in the brooder. I have stroked several of them lightly since them, but didn't want to stress them by handling them too soon.
    They all appear to be strong and healthy, and today I cut up a small tomato and offered it to them. They were not in the least bit interested in it, and I left it in the brooder. I came back in about 30 min. later, and was hearing a large amount of peeping. I looked and found the chick game of catch me if you can with the tomato bits. So Cute!
    Now I want to start handling them, so they will become pet like, as far as sitting on my shoulders or arms, or maybe come up to me when I come into the yard, and allow me to pet them. What do I do now to help them learn that behavior?[​IMG]
     
  2. substandardtim

    substandardtim Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 15, 2009
    what we did was wash hands well before and after picking up chicks and picked htem up and held them as many times a day as possible from day one. if one chick seemed squirler then the rest it got extra attention.

    we where given a few leghorns that didnt get any holding at all and they were insane. those where all roosters though and we gave them all away.
     
  3. anngili

    anngili Chillin' With My Peeps

    I just started doing that with mine by getting a bowl of treats ready, putting a towel across my leg, and then gently sat them on my leg and hand fed them the treats while making soft clucking noises. If they were stressing out, I made sure I leaned down so they could easily see my eye and then I blinked very slowly a couple of times while making what Ihope were reassuring clucking noises. Then, when they'd settled enough, I just started stroking them very lightly on their chests and backs while I fed them. IMHO, I think there are acouple of things to keep in mind. It seems to be very important to hold them the right way so they don't struggle and scare the
    selves and to just move slowly and gently. I'm another newbie, so I searched this site and somewhere there's at least one good post on how to pick up and carry chicks and chickens correctly. It seems to work very well with my birds; they lined up this am to catch a ride to the veggie garden for free range time. [​IMG]
     
  4. RedStarDaddy

    RedStarDaddy Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 18, 2009
    When I first got mine I of course picked each one up out of the box and gave her a good look-see making sure her vent wasn't pasted up then I put the first three or four into the brooder and dipped their beaks in the water. (The fifth jumped out of my hand and made a beeline to the waterer, so I quit dipping beaks after that since they were playing chicken see-chicken do at that point.) I made sure they could find the feed then I left them alone the rest of the day. The next morning I half-filled the feeders then half-filled them again that afternoon. And I talked to them too.

    After that I would pick up three, four, or five chicks one at a time at random and stroke them, scratch their beaks, and cup them in my hands. I stayed with half-filling the feeders so I could have frequent contact with them. And I kept talking to them when I did. I guess I did something right. When I step outside if they are getting outside time I get mobbed, and they crowd around my feet when I walk into the chicken house. If I peek out the window at the yard they see me and come down to the people house. They recognize the sound of the truck and will come running when they hear it. And they come when I call them.

    I can't guarantee this will work for you, but it's what I did and those are the results I got. Good luck.

    RSD
     
  5. wildorchid053

    wildorchid053 Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 12, 2009
    syracuse area, ny
    we just picked them up and brought them onto our laps with a towel and snuggled them up and they would fall asleep on us.. the grandkids wouldn't leave them alone.. now you can touch them freely and they are about 4 months now.. the roos got a little aggressive but they are settling down now that they are breeding.. we can actually touch them again. they like their crops and bellies rubbed
     
  6. eggsrcool

    eggsrcool Sussex Fanatic

    I pick mine up, check for any problems, pasty-butt etc.. and then I put paper towels on the floor and let them play for about 10 minutes, then let them go on my lap. Whatever you do dont drop them, I accidentally did and I have to run around to catch him now [​IMG] .
     
  7. Kacey's Krazee's

    Kacey's Krazee's Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 8, 2009
    Normangee, Texas
    I have them brooding in the new hen house, and go out very often to check the heat. I have been talking to them often, but not really reaching down to wear they are at. Today, they not only had a chance to try a tomato, but hubby found a grasshopper that was shedding his skin, and we offered it to them. Now that was funny!
    Poor babies wore themselves out! I hope it wasn't too much for them food wise.
     
  8. RBOutdoors

    RBOutdoors Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 4, 2009
    What else could you use as treats besides tomatoe slices?
     
  9. magsrags

    magsrags Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 12, 2008
    Staten Island NY
    Quote:This is my method as well. I will say that "untill' they are 3 monts or so....older they don't understand the treat thing. So give them the handling as much as possible & then see how each individual turns out. NO 2 are alike in my experience. Good luck![​IMG]
     
  10. Chicky Tocks

    Chicky Tocks [IMG]emojione/assets/png/2666.png?v=2.2.7[/IMG] Ru

    Oct 20, 2008
    Benton, Arkansas
    I have some sweetly tame 18 week olds right now because I did handle them and often. I kept them inside in the brooder for as long as I could. One of their favorite treats was boiled egg that I grated with a hand grater. I wouldn't give them treats like this until they're a couple of weeks old. Also you might put in a dish of playground sand to act as grit for when you start treating regularly....and especially when you drop in the occasional football..er I mean bug! I gave mine some baby crickets from the pet store when they were about 3 weeks old. They love them! They start associating you with all things yummeh and good.
     

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