Raising Chickens with OCD

Discussion in 'Family Life - Stories, Pictures & Updates' started by chickenmadame, Mar 27, 2011.

  1. chickenmadame

    chickenmadame Out Of The Brooder

    Mar 27, 2011
    When a person has Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, one of the many things that help them treat it is exposure therapy. Doing the things that bother you the most. So I bought some chickens. I did not jump into it, in fact my husband and I talked long and hard about it. I have trouble with things that might make me sick, poop, bugs, etc. So I am hoping that raising these animals will help me face my fears straight on. I am an animal lover, and am excited about getting started. Has anyone else had any experience with this?
  2. Yay Chicks!

    Yay Chicks! Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 15, 2010
    Forest Grove, OR
    First, welcome to BYC. [​IMG] There is a lot of good information on here and helpful folks to communicate with along the way.
    I have no experience with raising chickens as a way to help with OCD, but I do find this very interesting. I hope that you will keep us posted a long the way.
    I hope that you also just enjoy your birds for the fun creatures they are.
  3. gritsar

    gritsar Cows, Chooks & Impys - OH MY!

    Nov 9, 2007
    SW Arkansas
    I have mild OCD. Also, what my DH calls OCCD - obsessive compulsive cleaning disorder. It took me about 6 months of having chickens to realize I couldn't ever keep their coop as clean as I keep the house.
    Chickens are such funny creatures. They'll win your heart in no time and you'll find that the icky parts don't bother you as much.
  4. Squishy

    Squishy Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 2, 2011
    While I dislike it quite a bit if someone accuses me of OCD.. I do have issues with cleanliness and bacteria. Sometimes almost comparable to what Mr. Monk on the show Monk has. Funnily enough, I can handle certain kinds of dirt. I can deal with animals.. animal poo.. garden dirt (for a short while, but I cant touch anything I may later touch and have to take a very thorough shower afterwards). I cannot deal with dirt that comes from people, even the idea of dirt /germs, invisible lurking things, on even very clean people, whom I know well. I cant, for instance, dry my hands on a towel anyone else has dried their hands on, turn door knobs without the help of my shirt, ect. It started for me when I moved into a big, filthy city as a teen... but I find whenever I get out into the country I really relax. Our house only has an acre, and is in the suburbs, so Im not relaxed about people here... but I find my animals do make it alot better for me! I can even cuddle with my chicks without washing my hands! That will probably only last until they get outside though... at the moment they are in the nice clean, brand new, brooder in my room, with brand new everything, and constantly cleaned bedding, plus I watched them hatch myself, so I know nothing "dirty" could of gotten on them. LOL. Though for some reason I had to wash my hands every time I turned the eggs... something about where the eggs came from.... [​IMG]
    I have in my room at the moment... my puppy who sleeps with me at night... my hamster... 2 Bettas in a 20 gal tank... and my 3, 2 week old Silkie chicks.... out of all of those I really find my chicks the easiest to deal with. Their poo is really not that bad, and very small... the only thing that ever starts to smell at all (when brooder kept nice and clean) is if they spill some water and it gets onto the food... then the food smells. They also LOVE bugs... so out in the yard they should help keep those things down. My chickies had a fly find its way into their brooder a few days ago, and they went absolutely batty, tripping all over eachother trying to be the one to catch it!
    Though I have to say... the "desensitzing" thing with *people* would just never happen with me [​IMG] ...
    I very much encourage you in this! [​IMG]

    Edited to add - My worst problem with my chickies is the water thing. I have one of those chick waterers, in purple, and I set it up on a teacup and saucer, about as high as it would go with the brooder top still closable. Yet the chickies still manage to kick a bunch of shavings in there. Mine think they need to constantly re-dig a hole to china, in the same spot, by the waterer, several times a day! I have to scoop out wet shavings, sometimes with a little poo in them, several times a day... and when I see the poo in there, I have to go wash the whole thing. I considered one of those chicken water bottle things.. but Im really uncertain as to how well something with a beak would drink from one? But you may still want to consider it!
    Last edited: Mar 27, 2011
  5. chickenmadame

    chickenmadame Out Of The Brooder

    Mar 27, 2011
    Thanks guys. The biggest obstacle is poop and salmonella. I have been wearing rubber gloves, but still get pretty yucked out. We will see what the weeks bring. I do love those little chicks.
  6. wildorchid053

    wildorchid053 Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 12, 2009
    syracuse area, ny
    put the gloves away and just wash your hands.. that will be a very giant step for you.. it will do you good. i like you, are a perfectionist but over the years and meds i have become much more relaxed about things... you might as well get used to the germs because chickens poop alot and your bound to get some on you when you clean your coop.. be it on your clothes or on your skin.. just wash and then if your still upset use antibacterial wash.. you will fall in love and it will be just like having to change your baby's diaper.. it won't be that bad.. good luck and enjoy your babies. they will bring lots of smiles to your face.
  7. chickenmadame

    chickenmadame Out Of The Brooder

    Mar 27, 2011
    Well I had one heck of a set back this weekend. I thought one of the birds might be sick. Turns out poops come in all sizes and color:) But I felt like I had contaminated the whole house. It took alot of calming exercises to get there, but I can handle the chickens without gloves again. Just another step. Many more to come.
  8. A.T. Hagan

    A.T. Hagan Don't Panic

    Aug 13, 2007
    North/Central Florida
    I would have thought poultry keeping was more likely to GIVE someone OCD than to treat it. [​IMG]

    But if it's helping you with yours then more power to you!
  9. ChooksinChoppers

    ChooksinChoppers Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 24, 2011
    Ocala, Florida.
    I didnt know Chickens had OCD [​IMG]
    .....Sorry weird Aussie humor coming out there! Keep up the good work! [​IMG] remember ...I can do all things through Him that strengtheneth me.
  10. Qi Chicken

    Qi Chicken Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 3, 2009
    Good luck to you. I think (hope) you will find that poop and such, is not gross, it is a biological process. We all do it. As we get bigger our poop gets bigger too. (word to the wise!) I just read today about a petition that is trying to get tryclosan (not the right spelling-it's late) banned. It is the most common ingredient in most hand sanitizers and is toxic to all living things. Deep breathe and think about biotic (life) and anti biotic (anti life) You will be fine. Relax into it slowly. Life is better than anti-life by a long shot. Even if it is kind of messy at times.

    PS--From your title I also thought your chickens had OCD. Now THAT would be hard to deal with. PS [​IMG]

    psps: Just wanted you to know that I am not very OCD about the coop, and have never, ever, ever, gotten any kind of sickness from anything. Sometimes I even forget to wash my hands [​IMG]

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