What is the proper way to handle a chicken?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by turtle1173, Aug 9, 2008.

  1. turtle1173

    turtle1173 Songster

    Apr 26, 2008
    SE Missouri
    Now that my hens are getting to the laying age, they aren't running away as much and are doing more squatting. I would like to pick them up every once in a while but I'm having trouble.

    I believe I read somewhere about picking them up from the front to keep their "rear" away from you and to help support their weight on your arm. Well that sounds well and good but when I do this they then move their feet onto my hand and I usually walk away slightly bleeding.

    Obviously I don't want that to continue, LOL.

    How do I do this to keep the chicken safe, secure, and steady? Oh, yeah, I want to be safe, secure and steady too!!

    I guess I should mention that these are full size 17 week old chickens.

    Last edited: Aug 9, 2008
  2. These are my first chicks so I'm no expert. I've picked them up from front or rear, when sure I can encapsulate their wings gently and firmly. If you want to cradle them gently rotate them into the inside of your elbow and sit on a chair, bale or stool to support the feet gently on your lap. They should settle, talk to them softly and listen to them chuckle. It's very nice.

    If you have to medicate, best to involve a second person![​IMG]
  3. SandraMort

    SandraMort Songster

    Jul 7, 2008
    My nine yr old says, "You stick it with pins until it begs for mercy, then you pick it up and cuddle it until it feels better. That's called BLACKMAIL."
  4. On my standard hens, i reach from the top, hand on either side of wings, then lift and cradle sideways in my left arm. Neck and chest are in the crook of my arm, i support the body with my other hand underneath, and let the legs dangle. If you let them get their feet onto your hand or arm, they will push against it, trying to get into a standing position.

    On my bantams, i lift in the same way, but because they're small, i've trained most to them balance on my arm, and it's not too too painful.

    i've found most chickens do not want to be picked up. But a quick way to get my standard hens into my lap is to dangle a mealworm above it.

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