Scared Hen Won't Leave Coop

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by BlueSkadu, Oct 6, 2016.

  1. BlueSkadu

    BlueSkadu Just Hatched

    Jul 27, 2015
    My dogs (who are usually good with the chickens) chased one of them into a bush yesterday. I was right there so I was able to stop them so I'm pretty sure that there was no physical damage done. Now this hen won't leave the coop. I understand that this behavior is typical after a hen has an encounter with a predator but is there something I can do? I'm tempted to carry her outside to the fenced in pen with the rest of the flock to help her get over it, but I don't want to traumatize her more. Should I just wait it out? How long?
  2. sunflour

    sunflour Flock Master Premium Member Project Manager

    Jan 10, 2013
    IMO wait it out. Forcing her to go out after this stress will make things worse. Especially if the dog is still able to access the area.

    And don't trust the dog - many "chicken friendly" dogs have killed flocks :(
  3. azygous

    azygous Flock Master

    Dec 11, 2009
    Colorado Rockies
    Totally agree. Leave her be. You'll only traumatize her further.

    Chickens are prey animals. Your hen is operating on pure instinct. She is doing what she needs to do for self preservation. Just make sure she has access to food and clean, fresh water while she exiles herself to the coop. She'll venture out again when she feels it's safe to do so.

    Meanwhile, if you don't want her to take up permanent occupation of the coop, you had better keep those dogs well out of her sight.
    2 people like this.

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