Overhandling for small chicks, (or any age chicken) while getting settled is not a good idea. Too much holding can lead to injury or stress diseases.
Plus, even small baby chicks can fly!
Small chicks are safer in a wire brooder instead of flying around your backyard.
Even if your pet dog wants to play with your new pets he is much larger and can cause injury or worse.
Use caution showing your chickens to your dogs or cats. Or even better, keep your new chickens away from all dogs.
Once you let your chickens out for free-ranging then eventually predators will become bold enough to attack your flock
Use care if you free-range chickens even in a small backyard there are many quick predators that will be looking for a meal - And chickens running free are an easy dinner for a fast predator.
Be aware that 70% to 90% of ALL chicks from major hatcheries in the USA are carriers of MG. And unless you raise your chickens in indoor facilities all chickens are subject to the perils of Mother- Nature, weather, bugs, or predators, and eventually, all chickens will have to be replaced over time.
Here it is in a "nutshell." What have I learned from raising chickens in the last 14 years? People have changed, but chickens are still agricultural farm animals.
I've learned that I do not control the weather, cold, heat, rain, floods, gravity, temperature, or bacterial growth, Mother Nature nor Natural Selection- I have learned to let go and raise the chickens to the BEST of my abilities.
And I have learned that raising chickens is a "cycle" of replacements as your coop needs change, or your chickens begin to age, sometimes there are losses due to illness or predators ALL chickens will need to be replenished and replaced over time.
The real truth is, raising chickens from chicks to grow hens for eggs or establishing a coop for a flock of hens takes time, experience, and skill. Just remember the basics and your chicken adventure will be a lot easier!
When you get your chickens home to the new coop or brooder, remember to leave them alone to settle down, and it's normal for lots of peeping & clucking "chicken chatter" as they are getting used to the new area.
It's a good idea to not make changes to the daily routine for your new chickens upon arrival, for "eggsample" keep your chickens on the same feed formula. And remember, when moving chickens it can take them a few days to settle down and start laying eggs.
Use care if you free-range chickens even in a small backyard there are many quick predators that will be looking for a meal.
Most people setting up coops for the 1st time want "very clean pens" Read this page 1st before choosing your chickens' bedding. chickens NEED old coop bacteria to establish their gut health or else you may face future health problems if your coop is "too clean!"
Other products to use and keep & use for chickens and near your chicken coop are:
(SSHHH!!! It's a secret!...) Fish Antibiotics are NOT regulated in any way for purchase. These are the same antibiotics used for humans, dogs, and cats! Plus you do not need a Veterinarian or a prescription. Be sure to read the label directions for measurement and dosage)
Use the commercial insecticide Ivermectin several times a year. During all "buggy seasons" February - August This medicine comes in different strengths - READ THE LABEL CAREFULLY- Stops parasites and is a great dewormer
Flies, mites, bugs can stress out chickens to the point of getting respiratory illnesses or even worse. The worse predators are the tiny bugs that you cant see!
Take a look at illnesses on the Backyard Chicken page! Many of these chicken owners (and veterinarians!) are unaware that invisible mites, flies, and mosquitoes may start many of the illnesses in chickens.
After the rainy season, there are millions of tiny bugs that can harm chickens - as well as worms in their gut system. Take care of your chickens by controlling parasites.
(Note: Mosquitoes/gnats/flies can even kill CATTLE, after a heavy rainstorm and in standing water so spraying coops for pests to protect chickens is essential!) (bugs breed in coop bedding, dust, and near spider webs. Also in standing water much of the year)
SPRAY IVERMECTIN UNDER BOTH WINGS & ON BACK/TAIL FEATHERS SEVERAL TIMES DURING THE "BUGGY" SEASONS
It's important to keep your coop clear of debris and spilled feed that may attract rodents. Rats and mice leave droppings that may make chickens sick
Vetericyn Plus® Pink Eye Spray is specially formulated for irritated eyes showing signs of Pink Eye. Based on advanced hypochlorous technology, Vetericyn Plus® Pink Eye Spray is formulated at an appropriate pH level and will not burn or sting. Apply to eyes to provide relief from irritation, burning, stinging, itching, pollutants and other foreign materials. Also, use to wash away mucus secretions and discharge. This product is also helpful for symptoms of conjunctivitis (Pink Eye), eye abrasions, and eye irritation. The trigger spray applicator facilitates application directly to the eye and is safe for all animal species of all ages, and life stages. From your home to the farm or ranch, Vetericyn makes caring for your livestock simple and easy.
There are many types of garlic for your chicken's diet. It's important to use garlic (powder/fresh/dehydrated/oil) whatever is best for your coop to your chicken's diet. You can add to the water or even easier add several tablespoons of dried powder per pound of feed. Every time you feed your chickens sprinkle garlic powder or granules & mix it into the feed.
IMPORTANT: adding garlic to the diet will stop most bug bites!
Many new people that are starting their first flock will spend a fortune at the veterinarians if their chicken shows signs of illness.
And it does not escape the vet's office that you will pay $$$ to save your pet!
So he offers you pills, injections, and antibiotics (in some cases it will work) but the veterinarians will not offer you natural options but instead sell you expensive medications. Your vet will not ask you about your coop health and your poultry litter. Nor, if you free range your chickens, All of these are important for your chicken's health.
(Which will NOT solve the problem!)
(Note I am NOT a licensed vet!) But I will be able to tell you what is the most likely cause for your chicken's behavior and the possible problems. Many times - making a few changes in your coop or how you care for chickens can solve many problems.
FACT- Nearly all vets practice in small animals cats and dogs and have little or no "eggsperience with chickens"
1) READ OUR GUARANTEE PAGE AND UNDERSTAND THAT CHICKENS ARE FLOCK AGRICULTURAL BIRDS AND SHOULD BE CONSIDERED UTILITY BIRDS AND THAT ARE REPLACEABLE - Some chickens can live for years as long as ten years, but understand that they are not lifetime pets.
70% to 90% of ALL chickens are carriers of Mycoplasma MG and can exhibit signs if they become stressed or sudden changes to their environment.
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