Will chickens use the dog door?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by PizzaBagelPie, Apr 3, 2017.

  1. PizzaBagelPie

    PizzaBagelPie Just Hatched

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    Hello, I'm new here though I've been lurking a while. I don't yet have my chickens but I'm planning to have them free ranging during the day but we have a doggy door and I'm wondering how likely it would be that they'd learn to use it and does anyone have any chickens that do? And if so, are there any ways you can think of where they'd still be able to free range without blocking the door off while still keeping them out?
     
  2. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Lots of Chickens Premium Member

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    I would think only an extremely human bonded chicken would even attempt to go through a doggie door. Mine learn to push out the goat door flap, so it's possible a chicken could learn it but unlikely unless there was a good reason for it to try. That being said I have had hens squeeze under shed doors to hide their eggs.
     
  3. PizzaBagelPie

    PizzaBagelPie Just Hatched

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    Well my hope is that they end up very people friendly, a bit bonded or imprinted would be good too, at least to my family. Also the dog door is in the back door which is in the kitchen, so I see that as a bit of a good reason they'd want to come inside. So if they were to figure out the door what would be the best way to stop that? Without blocking it if course, so the dogs can still go in and out as they please
     
    Last edited: Apr 3, 2017
  4. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Lots of Chickens Premium Member

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    I wouldn't worry about that until it happens. Than you have no recourse but to block it.

    I would not feed treats right outside the door, or interact with them right there, always go to their pen. The chicken poop that will be right outside your door if they hang out there will prompt you to either lock them up or shag them off.
     
  5. azygous

    azygous Chicken Obsessed

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    It took me a bit to figure out you don't want them to use the doggie door.

    In that case, I wouldn't worry about it. It takes quite a bit of incentive for chickens to use a door with plastic flaps. I have these flaps on the pop holes on the coops to keep out drafts and flies. Chickens learn to use them easily, but they have incentive to want to go in and out of where they sleep and lay eggs.

    Unless you train them to use the doggie door to your house by enticing them through it with treats, I doubt you will see them barging though it anytime soon.
     
  6. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Lots of Chickens Premium Member

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    One of my Easter eggers learned last fall how to push open a spring loaded door to lay her egg in the hay bales. My husband was working on the siding of the shed, when the hen pushed her way through the door and went and laid her egg. She even learned to pull it open with her head to go back on the chicken side. The door now has hook on it. Chickens can be quite crafty sometimes.
     
  7. PizzaBagelPie

    PizzaBagelPie Just Hatched

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    So it's unlikely they'll come in in the first place then but if they do they probably won't stay out? I certainly hope they just don't come in. It'd be a shame to have to lock them up most of e time and it'd be annoying to go back and fourth letting all four dogs in and out
     
  8. azygous

    azygous Chicken Obsessed

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    Just keep your fingers crossed you don't have a prodigy like Old Hen does.
     
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  9. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Lots of Chickens Premium Member

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    Seems there's 1 smart chicken for every 25-50 not so bright ones, so odds are in favor of a normal chicken.[​IMG]
     

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