The First Few Weeks Tips and Advice

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by LambsBYChicks, Mar 15, 2018.

  1. LambsBYChicks

    LambsBYChicks In the Brooder

    10
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    Feb 27, 2018
    Southeast Wisconsin
    Hello! I FINALLY picked out chicks yesterday morning (all pullets) from a local farm and garden store. I was super bummed they didn't wind up getting any Brahmas in :( so I went with two buff orpingtons, two barred rocks, and one easter egger ( Thought the colored eggs would be fun and she just happens to be the cutest of the bunch). Names are changing everyday, today the orps are Pumpkin and Ruby, the EE is Gekko (my two year old is obsessed with PJ Masks and seemed better than Cat Boy and easier than Owlette), and the Barred Rocks are Fiona and Jovie/Penny.

    So, we seem to have settled well (just picked them up yesterday morning). I feel like they have a pretty good balance of walking around, eating, drinking and sleeping. I have been struggling with the temp, but have been successful keeping it between 90-95. I may lengthen the pole our heat lamp is attached to or get a lower wattage bulb because they do seem to sleep more towards the edge of the brooder, but they aren't complaining loudly.

    So here are where I need tips/advice:

    Socialization - I read to leave them alone for a few days, but that isn't the best option with me being so excited and kids too. I pick them up once or twice a day for only maybe 30-40 seconds and tell them how cute they are. I try sticking my hand in the brooder with and without food. They have no interest in food out of my hand though. Am I on the right track for making them our pets vs. just hens to lay eggs?

    Taking them out of their brooder for exploration and play - the girls are in my house, WI is way too cold yet to let them outside. So, I would like to, at some point, take them out and let them run around a gated area indoors (like our bathroom and supervised). When have others done this type of thing?

    Treats - when can I start giving them little tidbits of treats to help encourage our relationship. And what do you give them?

    Food - I started them on non-medicated food, but not I am wondering if I should feed them medicated.. I din't think to ask if they had any vaccinations.

    probiotics - are these a good idea. I noticed a tiny bit of hard poop on one of the orps behinds this morning (not close to clogging her vent), but wondering if adding some probiotic would be a good idea. They have a little bit of electrolyte solution in their water now.

    They are just so darn cute! i was worried about them being home alone all day LOL so we are going to take an old baby monitor that has WIFI and use that so I can keep tabs on them during the day while I am at work :) I am already dreaming about when we can sell our house and buy 5 or so acres!!! Can't happen soon enough.

    I just want our girls to love us as much as we love them :)
     
    cavemanrich likes this.
  2. cavemanrich

    cavemanrich Crossing the Road

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    Apr 6, 2014
    Melrose Park Illinois
    Let me answer your questions.

    Socialization - I read to leave them alone for a few days, but that isn't the best option with me being so excited and kids too. I pick them up once or twice a day for only maybe 30-40 seconds and tell them how cute they are. I try sticking my hand in the brooder with and without food. They have no interest in food out of my hand though. Am I on the right track for making them our pets vs. just hens to lay eggs?

    Handle them as much as you want. They are your pets. they will be less frightened of you the more they are handled.

    Taking them out of their brooder for exploration and play - the girls are in my house, WI is way too cold yet to let them outside. So, I would like to, at some point, take them out and let them run around a gated area indoors (like our bathroom and supervised). When have others done this type of thing?

    If you have a child playpen, then use it. Remember that lil ones will be dropping lil worm like items from south end. :gig
    Don't take them outside until it is warm and they are feathered out. About 6 to 8 weeks. Use your common sense. :wee


    Treats - when can I start giving them little tidbits of treats to help encourage our relationship. And what do you give them?

    Wait until they are a little older with treats. Whatever you do give them make sure they have grit available. Even soft things like fruit and vegetable items need grit to grind up properly in their gizzard. Start by giving them some watermelon. No grit needed, if only the red ripe portion. Later when they eat the green part, grit is suggested to be available free choice.


    Food - I started them on non-medicated food, but not I am wondering if I should feed them medicated.. I din't think to ask if they had any vaccinations.

    Feed stores usually have their chicks vaccinated from hatchery for Mareks. Coccidiosis is something your chicks can get. Medicated chick starter does prevent that and helps chicks develop immunity. After you use up your medicated feed you just use the non medicated. Nothing goes to waste.


    probiotics - are these a good idea. I noticed a tiny bit of hard poop on one of the orps behinds this morning (not close to clogging her vent), but wondering if adding some probiotic would be a good idea. They have a little bit of electrolyte solution in their water now.

    That is referred to as pasty butt. It can occur as a result of too warm. Keep lowering the brooder temp by 5 degrees each week. If you notice that the chicks are avoiding being directly under light= too hot. If chick are concentrating being huddled under light= on the cool side.
    Just clean water is sufficient without any additives.


    They are just so darn cute! i was worried about them being home alone all day LOL so we are going to take an old baby monitor that has WIFI and use that so I can keep tabs on them during the day while I am at work :) I am already dreaming about when we can sell our house and buy 5 or so acres!!! Can't happen soon enough.

    I can tell that you :love them.


    I just want our girls to love us as much as we love them :)

    WISHING YOU BEST,,,, and :welcome
     

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