Rooster not acting right

Justjess0820

In the Brooder
Oct 2, 2021
17
6
14
I have a rooster that is about 18 weeks old. His name is Don. He has been a part of his flock of one other rooster and 2 hens since he was about 2 weeks old. He started out as the top rooster and a few months in the other rooster decided he was going to be the top. He got pecked pretty good overnight that one time and he stuck to himself for a few days after kind of like he was sulking. Everything went back to normal. Fast forward to a few weeks ago. I noticed Don was spending all of his time by himself and just didn’t seem to be acting right. He would stand puffed up and wasn’t eating much. Everyone else was acting fine. I brought him in and the next day he was acting like himself again. He didn’t show anymore odd behavior. He spent over a week by himself just so I could make sure he was okay. I reintroduced him to the flock today. After a quick stand off and him bowing down to the other rooster everything was okay. He joined everyone in eating and ate for a while. After eating he went right back to standing alone by himself and acting off again. After a while I went out to put up the feed for the night and picked him up and he got up on my shoulder and just sat there. At dusk he didn’t follow the others into the coop. He just stood at the door to the run. I went out and placed him in the coop myself. And now here I am. What is going on with him? Is he being bullied and I’m just not seeing it? I will add the he is a good amount smaller than all the others. At least half their size. He is and has been my favorite and most loving chicken since the beginning so I do hold him and give him more attention than the others. I’m not sure if that makes a difference or not. I’m just really worried about his well being and need to figure out what I can do to help him. Do hens bully roosters if they are smaller? Is the other rooster bullying him?
anyone have any ideas??
 
Last edited:

Thetinyfarm

Chirping
Oct 19, 2021
96
299
93
Alberta Canada
I have a rooster that is about 18 weeks old. His name is Don. He has been a part of his flock of one other rooster and 2 hens since he was about 2 weeks old. He started out as the top rooster and a few months in the other rooster decided he was going to be the top. He got pecked pretty good overnight that one time and he stuck to himself for a few days after kind of like he was sulking. Everything went back to normal. Fast forward to a few weeks ago. I noticed Don was spending all of his time by himself and just didn’t seem to be acting right. He would stand puffed up and wasn’t eating much. Everyone else was acting fine. I brought him in and the next day he was acting like himself again. He didn’t show anymore odd behavior. He spent over a week by himself just so I could make sure he was okay. I reintroduced him to the flock today. After a quick stand off and him bowing down to the other rooster everything was okay. He joined everyone in eating and ate for a while. After eating he went right back to standing alone by himself and acting off again. After a while I went out to put up the feed for the night and picked him up and he got up on my shoulder and just sat there. At dusk he didn’t follow the others into the coop. He just stood at the door to the run. I went out and placed him in the coop myself. And now here I am. What is going on with him? Is he being bullied and I’m just not seeing it? I will add the he is a good amount smaller than all the others. At least half their size. He is and has been my favorite and most loving chicken since the beginning so I do hold him and give him more attention than the others. I’m not sure if that makes a difference or not. I’m just really worried about his well being and need to figure out what I can do to help him. Do hens bully roosters if they are smaller? Is the other rooster bullying him?
anyone have any ideas??
Awe poor Don, that’s sad. Oddly enough this just happened to me, last week. My rescue rooster Donald was acting weird. He went from being a regular happy rooster with his girls, to being alone in the pen and not wanting to socialize. He stopped crowing. He stopped eating and sadly I found he passed away the next morning. He wasn’t sick or wormy . He was a rescue though and by the looks of his legs he was older.
 

Justjess0820

In the Brooder
Oct 2, 2021
17
6
14
does he weigh what he should? what's his poo like?
I have no idea what breed he is as I got him as an orphan chick so I’m unsure about weight. Like I said, he is very small but he feels and looks healthy. His poo is normal right now. When he started acting strange he had green poo like he wasn’t eating but it was back to normal the next day after separating him and has been normal since.
 

Perris

Still learning
Jan 28, 2018
4,765
21,933
827
Gower, Wales
well that's encouraging. It's not size but attitude that matters. The hens will want to hang out with the best roo, so only the dom will have company normally, and you have a very small flock. 2 of each sex is not ideal. Any chance of rehoming one of the roos?
 

Justjess0820

In the Brooder
Oct 2, 2021
17
6
14
well that's encouraging. It's not size but attitude that matters. The hens will want to hang out with the best roo, so only the dom will have company normally, and you have a very small flock. 2 of each sex is not ideal. Any chance of rehoming one of the roos?
No luck on rehoming unfortunately. We have a lot of cockfighting in this area and the ones that offered to take him fit into that group. I just can’t knowingly give over a roo as bait. I am in the process of expanding the run to put the other rooster in a separated area. He acts like he is scared of the hen as well though that’s why I thought maybe his size.
Today has been a cold rainy day and he has tried to get under everyone else and was standing with his head in his wing so I brought him back in. I just don’t understand what’s going on with him. Is it possible he just doesn’t fit in?
 

Perris

Still learning
Jan 28, 2018
4,765
21,933
827
Gower, Wales
Pity about the cockfighting; I wouldn't want to condemn any bird to that either.

Really it's not about size: my top hen is my smallest, and she even bosses a 2 yr old Barbezieux roo who is significantly larger than anyone else in the flock, including 2 other mature roos. They sometimes hang out together and make a very odd couple; he's a gentle giant and she's miss bossy boots :p It sounds like your boy is just timid by nature, if he's not hiding illness. And yes it is possible he just doesn't like them or vice versa. I've had a few independent hens and I'm sure roos can be so inclined too.
 

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