Why are they so shy?

ChobeeChickenMommy

Songster
8 Years
Sep 2, 2011
620
15
151
Okeechobee, FL
Can anyone tell me how I can get my chickens to not be so shy? I have tried over a hundred tmes to pick them up & love on them but they just won't let me... if we get anywhere near them they run... what can I do?
 

scratch'n'peck

Crowing
11 Years
Oct 31, 2008
5,916
589
361
West Michigan
My Coop
Find out what treats they like and then gradually start requiring them to be closer and closer to get the treat. Try not to play the chase game with them, because they will stay in the habit of running away. Some of them may never be cuddly, but with treats they will learn to look forward to seeing you. Eventually you can train them to get a pet for a treat and maybe even have them hop on your lap for a treat.

Here is a link to a treat chart: https://www.backyardchickens.com/web/viewblog.php?id=2593-Treats_Chart
 

ChobeeChickenMommy

Songster
8 Years
Sep 2, 2011
620
15
151
Okeechobee, FL
scratch'n'peck :

Find out what treats they like and then gradually start requiring them to be closer and closer to get the treat. Try not to play the chase game with them, because they will stay in the habit of running away. Some of them may never be cuddly, but with treats they will learn to look forward to seeing you. Eventually you can train them to get a pet for a treat and maybe even have them hop on your lap for a treat.

Here is a link to a treat chart: https://www.backyardchickens.com/web/viewblog.php?id=2593-Treats_Chart

Thanks! I have a lot of that here at the house cause my kids like to snack on that kind of stuff too, so I think I am going to start trying different things tomorrow. Thank you!!​
 

al6517

Real Men can Cook
11 Years
May 13, 2008
10,684
144
321
If you just let them be and not try to do the things you mentioned your birds will be way better off for it and will be better chickens, that's a fact. Or you could just disregard because it will just make you feel better not the birds and that I think is what we are really talking about here aren't we.
 

ChobeeChickenMommy

Songster
8 Years
Sep 2, 2011
620
15
151
Okeechobee, FL
Quote:No I'm not trying to "just make myself feel better". I wasn't sure if there was a reason they were being shy or not. These are my first chickens & I am trying everything to make them comfortable and happy. I don't chase them BTW, & I do not let my sons chase them either.
 
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nurse_turtle

Songster
8 Years
May 28, 2011
3,518
94
201
Foothills of NC
Younger chicks go through a teenage phase where they hate everyone and run like crazy when approached. Some breeds are much more flighty and standoffish than others. I have 2 Dominique hens, a black giant hen and a Dominique rooster. Every day (sometimes twice) I take a treat to the pen (open air coop). I open their door and I sit on the ground just outside the door. I talk to them and tell them how pretty or handsome they are. The black giant is more shy than the other hens but the rooster is the most reserved. They will all eat form my hand, and the Dom girls let me stroke their necks and backs while they eat. The treat I use to make them love me best is GRAPES! I bite them in half and they go crazy. They prefer I hold it for them, but it doesn't always work out that way. After enough of these type visits, your babies will love you too. The girls start talking to me as soon as they see me. Also, try shredded cheese!
 

ChobeeChickenMommy

Songster
8 Years
Sep 2, 2011
620
15
151
Okeechobee, FL
Quote:Thank you! I love my "babies" as I call them & so do my boys and they just want to be able to see them up close. So hopefully after a little while of "treating" them. We are really trying to keep them happy and are working on making their coop & run awesome...
 

turtlebird

Songster
10 Years
Dec 11, 2009
508
32
176
I thought maybe you had some of the flighty breeds, that would do it - but you don't (based off of the bottom of your post).
I tend to not handle my birds too much, but I can say that they are more spazz-y between 4 months and 12 months. Mine also tend to run away when there is a rooster in the mix. When they finally learn that I am the one that brings the treats, then they come running
 

ChobeeChickenMommy

Songster
8 Years
Sep 2, 2011
620
15
151
Okeechobee, FL
Quote:I was thinking that they could be flighty... Here's a picture of 3 of them.


and here's my 4th little one.


The overall consensous is that the white one is a roo & I agree.
 

scratch'n'peck

Crowing
11 Years
Oct 31, 2008
5,916
589
361
West Michigan
My Coop
It is true that they go thru a "don't touch me" phase when they are adolescents. Real Man may chose not to handle his chickens much, but if your chickens are comfortable with you picking them up, it makes checking them over for health problems and preventative care with less stress to the bird. My chickens even love when I feed them weeds like dandelions and clover, and even very small morsels are motivating for a chicken.
 

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