Sneaky sneaky baby

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Keystone newbie, Jun 22, 2008.

  1. Keystone newbie

    Keystone newbie In the Brooder

    May 1, 2008
    Keystone Heights, FL
    Our chicks, who will be all of two weeks old tomorrow, have outgrown their brooder. My DH was revamping it, so I put the babies temporarily in an old dog kennel. It's not one of the plastic ones, but the kind with metal barring. The bars are about 1.5 inches wide, so I figured it would contain the chicks. They've grown quite large in their short lives. We set the kennel up on the floor, added pine shavings, some roosts, their food, and water and transferred them. I orginally was going to take them outside, but it rained. Anyway, they loved it and were soon scratching and flying about, peeping happily.

    As my husband worked on the new brooder, I was cleaning up lunch dishes. The chicks were about eight feet from me, so I could keep an eye on them. Every time I looked, they were doing their chick stuff in the kennel. I took my eyes off them in order to rinse out the sink and when I looked back, there was one of the RIRs looking up at me . . . outside the kennel!

    I walked over and she just looked up at me as casual as can be; as if being in the middle of the kitchen floor was a perfectly natural place for her to be! I scooped her up and returned her to the kennel. Having learned my lesson, I sat and just watched them. She never once made any attempt to get out again. She didn't even go near the bars!

    Fast forward about 30 minutes. The dryer buzzes. I run and grab the laundry thinking the RIR's escape had been a fluke. I return about three minutes later. Yep, little RIR was right back out in the kitchen with that same casual air. Thankfully, the brooder addition was finished by this time, so I didn't have to worry about my little Harry Houdini going for a third expedition.

    I'm so happy that I spend so much time with the babies that they're used to me. I can't begin to imagine how miserable it would have been trying to catch a chicken loose in my house! Needless to say, my plans to use the kennel as a tractor are on hold until the babies get a little bit bigger. I have no intention of leaving them alone outside in it, but my little RIR taught me well today that just turning my back for a minute is all it takes.[​IMG]
  2. cactus-hen

    cactus-hen Songster

    Jun 21, 2008
    I used a wire dog crate as a brooder. I attached shade cloth to the bottom half of the crate. It kept the chicks in, allowed for airflow, and you can see through it. If you leave the plastic tray in, you can use it in the house. With the tray out it can be used on the bare ground. I can use it as an isolation pen also.

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