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Anyone keep Hens?

Discussion in 'Dog Chat' started by kimdelyse, Apr 26, 2011.


  1. kimdelyse

    kimdelyse PetForums Senior

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    Morning all, hope you all had a happy easter!

    We're looking to tidy up the back garden and take on some ex-bat Hens in the next few months. Flo doesn't ever go in the back garden, so it's not as if he considers it "his place", so if he doesn't get on with the Hens it's not a big deal to keep them seperate. It would be nice if they got on though; has anyone had sucess with introducing their dog to their hens that they can tell me about?
     
  2. Dazadal

    Dazadal PetForums Member

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    I have been having the same thoughts I have 5 dogs but we do have quite a large garden with a Garage (that we don't use for the car) that could be their roost. I have also seen a very reasonable coup for sale in Wilkinsons for £140. Good luck if you do get any chickens. :)
     
  3. leoti

    leoti PetForums VIP

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    I own 6 border collies and also the proud owner of Winnie, Helen and Elsie my three lovely black rock hens , the dogs dont worry the hens as Elsie insists on laying her eggs in the dog kennel , while the other two lay in there coup, and my garden isnt very big but the girls get to free range all day every day
     
  4. catz4m8z

    catz4m8z PetForums VIP

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    Aw, Id love to have a couple of ex battery hens in my garden but I think 3 tiny dogs yapping at them would be abit much..:(
     
  5. vicki.burns

    vicki.burns PetForums Senior

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    When I was living at home with my Mum and Dad, I got two ex battery hens and we had a Jack Russell aswell.

    Sassy (dog) didn't really know what to make of them at first but while they were in their coop she used to try herding them!!!! But when they were let out and had full run of the garden, if Sasyy used to get too close to them, they would just go for her, so they all gave as good as they got!!

    Now theres only one chuck left but they just ignore each other when they're both out in the garden now, not interested in each other at all now!!
     
  6. kirk68

    kirk68 PetForums VIP

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    I'd love to keep som ex-bat hens but with all the other animals I've got I dont think I'd have time:(
     
  7. vicki.burns

    vicki.burns PetForums Senior

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    You be surprised at how much looking after they don't really need!!!

    But then again I don't know what other animals you have lol
     
  8. kat&molly

    kat&molly PetForums VIP

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    Chickens dont take a huge amount of care- but they are 'time wasters', you spend ages just watching their antics! My dogs are great with them but its taken a lot of work- and some luck I think!!
    Heres a pic of Jenny our Pekin Frizzle, she stalks us everywhere, cant move for her. Here shes nicking Mollys treats as I'm trying to clicker train her:D
    [​IMG]
     
  9. kimdelyse

    kimdelyse PetForums Senior

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    ooh lovely thanks for all the feedback. i did worry that with all they've been through, my gobby dog barking at them might be a bit too much... i think i'll let him watch them through the patio door for a bit, then gradually start taking him out on the leash to meet them. how exciting, i shall keep you all posted!

    the next "clearance" is scheduled for May 4th/5th but sadly i dont think we'll be ready for them :( and it wouldnt be fair to take them on unprepared, no matter how good my intentions.
     
  10. vicki.burns

    vicki.burns PetForums Senior

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    Are you going to be keeping them in a coop ??
     
  11. kirk68

    kirk68 PetForums VIP

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    I have 2 whippets (and a litter of 7 puppies), 3 cats, 8 rabbits, a parakeet and a husband. I think my life is pretty full. :rolleyes:
     
  12. vicki.burns

    vicki.burns PetForums Senior

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    Yea, I'd agree with that, the most we had at once was 2 chucks, 1 jack russell, 3 rabbits and a guinea pig lol
     
  13. kimdelyse

    kimdelyse PetForums Senior

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    I don't know all the proper words yet so bear with me...

    I plan to recycle my rabbit hutches and run. The hutches (I have 2 but imagine I'll only need one) are molded plastic so wind proof and fox proof and the run is in sections which can be cable tied together to the required size - also designed to be fox proof. It would have a closed top but can be as high as needed to allow for "flapping about".

    Once they've settled they will be welcome to the entire back garden, as the dog only uses the front. It has a 6 foot fence and despite keeping small pets out there for years the only "unwelcome" visitors have been field mice. I'll pop thm back away in the hutch/es at dusk. I understand I'll risk loosing any greenery but the only thing I really care about is my Bay tree, which is a giant! Though it's worth asking, will they find rhubarb to be poisonous like the animals? I do have a very established plant which I can fence off.

    I'm only out for a MAX of 4 hours a day, 3 days a week for work, and the dog comes with me.

    If you've got any advice for me at all I'd love to hear it. As i said, my good intentions aren't going to help anyone if im misinformed!
     
  14. vicki.burns

    vicki.burns PetForums Senior

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    Ours were always in a coop and then let out at every opportunity when the could be under observation, they were kept locked up so much because the next door neighbours garden was more of a jungle than a garden and was a complete state, with a family of foxes.

    We found that over the weekends etc when they were let loose pretty much all day they just took themselves off to bed towards the end of the day and we'd just go out later and lock the door up!!

    But they will scratch up everything!! Not sure about rhubarb you'd have to look that one up.
     
  15. Poppy2011

    Poppy2011 PetForums Junior

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    My dad has successfully introduced 7 Ex Battery Hens into a family of 3 cats and 2 dogs (Springer Spaniels).

    It took weeks and weeks of supervision and the Hens were kept in the Run for nearly 3 months but now they potter around happily.

    If the dog has good basics IE 'Here' 'Leave' then you should be ok, but it took time :)
     
  16. Cleo38

    Cleo38 PetForums VIP

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    We've got 3 ex-battery hens as well as x2 cats & x2 dogs.

    The cats are terrirfied of the chickesn & never go near them! The dogs are fine with them, I was so suprised. Seeing as Roxy is a 'handful' I thought she would be harrassing them but she doesn't bother them at all.

    Toby used to get over excited when the chickens ran about & would start woofing at them & runnin up & down their coop. Every time he did this he got put back in the house on his own so after a while he realised that being loud only got him in trouble!

    Now the dogs go over & the chickens run over to see them :D It was only a problem when Toby them decided to have a wee & it went all over them :eek:
     
  17. shells

    shells PetForums VIP

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    we found ebay fab for the hen house we had a really good sturdy house for up to 8 hens for 70 quid with 3 laying boxes atached. xx
     
  18. myshkin

    myshkin PetForums VIP

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    Plastic's good, easy to clean and keep free of mites.
    They pop into the henhouse themselves at dusk, all you have to do is close the door. I read somewhere that they have very poor vision in the dark, so they don't need rounding up.
    It sounds like a good plan to have them fairly confined at first, not only from the dog point of view, but also while they get used to you.
    When I get round to fully escape proofing the garden I plan to let mine go completely free range. My collie is fine with prey animals, but my jack russell isn't to be trusted! He doesn't get free rein of the garden though, so I'm going to have to work out some sort of way of restricting him.

    I don't know about rhubarb....going to have to look that up. As for trashing your plants, it's only really seedlings or veg that need protecting and you'll have organic slug control ;)

    Be warned....chickens are addictive, you will get hooked! Good luck!
     
  19. kirk68

    kirk68 PetForums VIP

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    Hmmm, should I be honest??::rolleyes::rolleyes: Yes probably.

    The most I ever had was 6 border collies, 1 Aussie Kelpie, 6 cats, 18 budgies, countless zebra finches, but I was at home more then so I had the time for them all. Certainly couldn't cope with that now
     
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