PEN TRAIN­ING

Your Chickens - - A-z | Info | Glossary -

In a show or ex­hi­bi­tion, the chick­ens are placed in al­lo­cated pens (small cages) that are usu­ally in rows and stacked two units high and they will re­main within the pen dur­ing the com­pe­ti­tion. This can be an alien en­vi­ron­ment, es­pe­cially if it’s their first time in a show, as such it can cause stress in the birds. Not only will they need to cope with trans­porta­tion to the show and be­ing placed in a cage in soli­tary con­fine­ment, they will also po­ten­tially be re­moved and put back in the pen by the judges on a num­ber of oc­ca­sions, whilst sur­rounded by noise from other birds and peo­ple, pub­lic ad­dress sys­tems, and po­ten­tially ma­chin­ery.

It is useful to get your chick­ens used to this by pen train­ing them prior to the show. This will en­sure the birds’ stress lev­els are min­imised and equally that the bird will look its best and re­main calm through­out.

There are var­i­ous tech­niques de­ployed when pen train­ing, but sim­ply get­ting them used to be­ing put in and picked out of the pen, talk­ing to them whilst they are in the pen, and play­ing the ra­dio when you are not around can make a sig­nif­i­cant dif­fer­ence to their (and your) stress lev­els.

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