why are they so scared of me


12 Years
Nov 1, 2010
My chicks are about 3 weeks old and they are terrified of me.

how can i make them more people friendly?
do i just need to spend more time with them or is there a trick to it lol
i would like them to become more friendly as they are babies so they will be able to be held when they are full grown
Mine were and still are terrified of me at 4 weeks. It's normal fight or flight behavior at this age. Our luck changed when we bought some freeze dried mealworms at TSC a week ago. They sell it in a little bag with red markings; I think they are called Happy hen treats. I read some posts about hand feeding treats, so I've been hand feeding them over the last week (as treats only), and what a change! Mine are still in a brooder, so it was easy to get them to come to me to try them. I had to crush some up in my hand (which was super yucky at first) and wait, and wait, and wait. Now they clamor over my hand when I first reach in to hand feed the treats. They still run like crazy if we try to pick them up. I keep telling my daughters not to try and pet or pick them up, just feed them.

I understand that they will not act like pets until after laying eggs, and probably, lots of treats.
Lots of treats help. Remember: you are like a giant monster to tiny chickens.
They will come around with treats. Some will get used the more you handle them and some are not "people" persons. Once they start squatting it may be easier to handle them.
I think it depends on the chicken(s) and if you hatch them yourself the imprinting thing helps out big time
then they'll come right up and won't leave you alone, and yes treats will make a huge difference.
I am 6'1" and 240lbs and I am not small by any means and have never been small. I got small to the chicks by going to the ground in a lawn chair a low boy chair. and feed them the treats. Rice, Pasta or whatever is your thing. I try to be slower, lower and after a month they are just building a trust thing with petting on the breast and back just standing the while in the chair. When a 10" bird sees a 60 inches something bending over to do they just go on basic survival mode and move. Be like a 35' some thing bending over to you.

I use treats too! I found Meal Worms at K-Mart for a buck less then Tractor Supply. They love them. I do like Baz does and get real low and go slow. No my hand is the FEED machine and they want to see what I'm bringing to them today. They also come to my voice now. Too much fun
They're scared of you because.....well, they're chicken! Give them time, and treats, and they'll be all about you in no time. Then they'll be scared of their perch when it time to roost, and scared of their coop when its time to move, new treats......and everything else that's not included in their routine. Good luck with them! And remember, chickens are chicken!
Also some breeds don't seem to gentle down till they start to lay, then they to become treat addicted and may be the most gentle ever.
Also remember not to approach them from above, they are programmed to be fearful of things above them
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It takes a lot of time and a lot of patience. In the end, they'll probably all eat from your hand, but not all of them will enjoy being picked up.

It can vary from breed to breed as to how friendly they get. But it can also vary from one chicken to another. I have two Araucanas - one loves being picked up, the other hates it. My two Polish bantams love sitting on our laps, but my Rhode Island Red smacks you with her wing if you try to pick her up. She's not even keen on being stroked and will avoid it if possible. But every one of them will take treats from our hand.

All our chickens have received the same love, care and attention. But they're just like people - there's a lot of difference in their personalities.


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