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Question for People with One House Chicken or One Chicken in General

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by BuffOrps416, Nov 10, 2016.

  1. BuffOrps416

    BuffOrps416 Chillin' With My Peeps

    So recently a hawk got one of my hens and now I have one left. I don't want to keep her outside unless I'm by her side, so she is staying in a corner of my screened in porch. But, I leave early in the morning and don't get home until around 4 some days, leaving only 30 min before the sun goes down and not much time for supervised free ranging.

    How do I entertain her and prevent her from being lonely since I can't be with her all the time (another chicken isn't really an option)?
     
  2. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

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    Try putting a mirror by her pen. She may interact with her reflection.
     
  3. drumstick diva

    drumstick diva Still crazy after all these years. Premium Member

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    You could get her a stuffed toy to cuddle with. Some chicken folks use parrot toys to amuse them. Maybe playing the radio would help. There are Kong toys you can fill with treats and as they get pushed around the treats fall out.

    A companion for her doesn't necessarily have to be poultry, some chickens are quite fond of dogs or even cats if you have any. Or if you have a parrot or other bird that makes sounds, she wouldn't feel so all alone. OR you might consider rehoming her where she won't be lonely.
     
  4. drumstick diva

    drumstick diva Still crazy after all these years. Premium Member

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    is there any chance she could come to work with you in a small cage?
     
  5. KrisCVT

    KrisCVT Chillin' With My Peeps

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    When my house chicken is inside in her indoor cage (like when I am at work), she gets one of those chicken treat balls filled- usually with a mix of BOSS, cracked corn, and mealworms. She spends a bit of time knocking it around to get the goodies out.
    Her cage is also by a window, so she likes to roost and look out. I do find that she is more calm and restful when there isn't any action going on- so try putting her in a quiet area of the house...where you won't have people/pets/lights going on/off all the time.
    When my husband and I are home, or it's first thing in the morning, or the dogs are up...my girl is at the front of her cage immediately making noise to be let out....but if we head to another room...she pipes down and goes back to roosting.
     
  6. BuffOrps416

    BuffOrps416 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Thank you to everyone else who responded. KrisCVT, does you feel like your chicken gets really lonely or does she seem fine? When I leave mine in an area of my screened in porch when I'm not supervising her outside, almost all she does is preen.
     
  7. JennaMW14

    JennaMW14 Out Of The Brooder

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    The best solution is probably getting another chicken, but I agree with everyone else also. Good luck! :)
     
  8. KrisCVT

    KrisCVT Chillin' With My Peeps

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    She doesn't seem lonely. She prefers to be inside....when I stick her outside in the yard to hang with the other birds (she is at the bottom of the pecking order) she sort of stays by herself and doesn't "mingle" much. But I try to put her outside daily when I am home to supervise. But she does get attention from us when we are home... like letting her hang out in the kitchen while we cook (she likes when we drop food). When in her cage, she will just roost, eat, play with her toy, or preen. I think if your hen isn't vocalizing or acting distressed...she is probably pretty content.
     
  9. azygous

    azygous Chicken Obsessed

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    The mirror trick really does seem to work. You should try it.

    I had a disabled hen who needed to be kept in the garage because she was being picked on by the flock and the cold made her condition much worse. She had her quarters in a plant grow window so she could see out as well as get direct sunshine in order to absorb important vitamin D. I found an 8x11 inch mirror that I propped up in a corner. She spent the majority of her time snuggled up next to the mirror.

    I believe chickens think the image in the mirror is actually another chicken, and it comforts them, satisfying their drive to be with other chickens.
     
  10. BuffOrps416

    BuffOrps416 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Thanks! I will definitely try to get a mirror since another chicken isn't really an option. Also, she does seem to like being inside, so I guess she's off to a good start!
     

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