Lesson 518 – Becoming one with chicken poop

Yesterday I went to the store and got a clicker (ergonomically designed to fit over my finger, no less.) I also got a jar of freeze-dried meal worms (again, YUM) ready for this coming weekend of chicken poop-training.

While I was at it, I also got some dog treats for Pippin. Hey, why not, right? Maybe we can get him to learn how to do something other than being adorably cute.

Anyway, in preparation, I’ve been watching Charlie for her poop tell (which of course, reminds me of the movie Casino Royale,which of course, reminds me of Daniel Craig, but I digress.) Haven’t figured it out yet, but then I haven’t been able to spend too much time with her.

That old black magic – work, calls my name. *Sigh*

Through Twitter and on Facebook though, I’ve been hearing sporadic stories of house chickens. Yes, apparently they do exist.

Meagan Fannin tweeted this in response to my tweet about house-training a house chicken:

My mom has a rogue chicken that comes in the dog door and snuggles with her cats and dogs… crazy little creatures!

When I asked her if the chicken was house-trained she replied:

LOL Mom is working on that! My daughter named her Booboo. She lays eggs on the counter & blankets on furniture :-)

There seem to be two camps in this discussion, those who think a chicken in the house (and a few well hidden eggs in the sofa) is not that crazy and then there are the others who think I am certifiable and that I should put my application in right now for that TV show “My Strange Addiction.”

In a discussion on Facebook, there was this reply left by Lorna Violet:

I tried something like this with a dove I had decades ago. It sorta worked. But i didn’t stick with it for various unrelated reasons.

I’ve wanted a bird in the house for ages but standard pet birds tend to be a tad loud and expensive and have very long life spans (I worry my dream bird, a Hyacinth Macaw, would outlive me) so I’ve toyed with the idea of having a bantam in the house “someday”. I have a chicken-aggressive dog right now and cats who see the chickens as roasted dinner so it’s a ways down the road if i do give it a try. i am curious to hear if this house training works. I firmly believe the chickens are MUCH more intelligent than we give them credit for, so i wouldn’t be surprised if it works.

And lastly another person on Facebook, told me to use diapers, yes they make them, he wrote.

Wait a minute –  chicken diapers?

A quick search led me to chicken diapers available at mypetchicken.com. These are great, the page says for:

  • Injured hens that need to recuperate indoors.
  • Show birds that need to be separated from the flock in the months before before the show
  • Beloved family pets who you couldn’t dream of putting outside.

Well there is it, on that last line. If Charlie is anything, she is a beloved family pet I couldn’t dream of putting outside.

Looks like if the clicker training doesn’t work, after 9 years of being diaper free, this family may just be heading back into diaper duty (yeah – pun stays.)

I call this "Charlie with monkey on dog bed"

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6 Comments

Filed under Backyard Chickens, Charlie, chicken care, Chicks

6 responses to “Lesson 518 – Becoming one with chicken poop

  1. I really can’t wait to see how this rolls out. If anyone can train a chicken it will be you.

  2. Jenn

    Any animal that comes running for a treat every time they hear the back door open can be trained with a clicker, LOL! I dont care what the popular opinion is, chickens are pretty darn intelligent! That, combined with a high food-drive, makes them easy to train.

  3. I am a bit hight-phobic; hence I do not do high-wire wire walks. Although I have not supplied details, I have mentioned to people I know in what might loosely be called the local organic gardening/organic farming community that I know (via cyberspace) someone who is planning on house-training a chicken, including my wife (who is far more of a chicken zealot than I am). Let’s just say that I don’t know if eyebrows can be “sprained” by shooting up, but certainly we came about as close as one can get. So people are waiting with interest to see how your ‘high-wire” act will turn out. Not to make you nervous, or anything.

  4. I just found your blog but I already love your chickens, especially Charlie. I can’t wait to hear how the chicken potty training goes. :-)

  5. Hey there — yes. I have miniature chickens in the house. They have a house in the house but spend a lot of time walking around, and mostly by their choice and preference sitting on our laps. For now this works as we have mostly tile floors, small birds – small poop, my family has had parrots – believe me much messier – and demanding – the chickens are actually (as you must know) affectionate… (Follow us from room to room and really truly just want to sit on you or right beside touching you…) But anyway – I can see great reasons to clicker train. People in general might be able to wave some of their misperceptions of what chickens are like etc… We’d like to help people see they actually make great “indoor pets” particularly the small pretty miniature show breeds…

    I keep the facebook page for a chicken conservatory (rare breeds) http://www.facebook.com/Chickenbreeds and I’m on twitter all day @MadelineHere

    A video of one of our bestest favorites – http://youtu.be/XGBMEMNeA9g

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