Scared chickens

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by RaPa, Jul 31, 2016.

  1. RaPa

    RaPa In the Brooder

    Jul 31, 2016
    Gatesville, Texas
    My pullets recently suffered a tragedy. The neighbors dog got into the yard and killed on of my chickens. Now the other two act like they are scared of me. They won't come when i give treats like before and the raise a ruckus when i pick them up. I'm new to chicken keeping so i don't know...Is this normal behavior? How do i show them I'm not going to hurt them?
  2. Mrs. K

    Mrs. K Crowing

    Nov 12, 2009
    western South Dakota
    That can be traumatic, and chickens do not like change. Instead of picking them up, just pull up a chair, sit quietly, occasionally sprinkle some treat around you, but not too close. Sip you coffee and and sit there. Gradually in a day or two, sprinkle your treats a little closer to you.

    They will calm down if you are calm. Picking up a bird by coming from the top is generally how many predators get chickens, with the recent attack, they are leary.

    Mrs K
    2 people like this.
  3. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician

    May 3, 2009
    New Jersey
    [​IMG] They are on high alert because of the recent attack. Do not try to catch and hold them - right now they are in 'flight' mode. Move slowly around them talk softly and gently toss them treats. It will take them time to get over this. Most important is making sure the dog does not get at them again.
    1 person likes this.
  4. RaPa

    RaPa In the Brooder

    Jul 31, 2016
    Gatesville, Texas
    1 person likes this.
  5. Mountain Peeps

    Mountain Peeps Change is inevitable, like the seasons

    Apr 23, 2014
    My Coop
    Welcome to BYC!

    Yup, they are still traumatized and on high alert. Try and keep their lives as calm and stress-free as possible. If they enjoy being touched, be sure to sit quietly with each one every day, stroking it and speaking softly to it.
  6. uzisuzuki

    uzisuzuki Songster

    Oct 30, 2014
    My brother's dog did something similar to me and my flock last year. She grabbed up a pullet and ran off with her like she was playing fetch. Luckily, my dad was able to get her to let go of my pullet and the pullet survived with minimal damage (amazingly). The downside was that she was definitely dealing with trauma. It took me all winter to get her to trust me again and let me handle her. However, I can't reach down and pick her up anymore - I have to let her jump up onto something so she can then hop only my arm or hand. Sometimes you just have to work slowly with them just like you would another human. :)

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