It’s hard to say if your neighbor’s chickens have mites and spread them to your dogs. Will you be able to  massage an egg out of your hen if it is stuck? Chicken feed can attract rodents. Toast the eggshells in the oven, grind them down, then add a tablespoon to Fido’s #unprocessed dinner, and KA-POW! My neighbor has a flock of six birds and has given me some brown eggs. A certain prejudice against chickens, a whiff of class division, can trigger opposition. Even though they do great with other chickens you will find that they want to get all the attention for themselves. Wild birds can carry them and bring them to your yard. I think if you want to raise chickens, you need to be an animal lover and understand that owning any animal takes a lot of work, but it is well worth the effort! Not all chicken breeds eat eggs or mind confinement. My son’s first pet chicken was when he was five and rode on his lap on my son’s peddle car. We have compiled a list of all the reasons to not keep chickens. Chickens are very social animals, so they need friends. I’m also battling the lice thing currently. I had a hen who preferred sleeping outside. In the rain you still need to check on them. Chickens are prone to getting parasites. I am considering keeping some chickens next year and I need to hear the good and the bad! Have you ever considered if raising backyard chickens is right for you? I love my girls too.But yes, they require lots of care and attention!! Chickens need a safe and secure henhouse. She may not want to go in because she associates the coop with mites. . The upshot has been a sharp rise in abandoned birds. It’s amazing how quickly they look like chickens and not babies. You can either fence the flowers in or the chickens out, but they cannot coexist freely without damage. Chickens lay eggs reliably for about 2-3 years. But, also like other animals as pets there are many different breeds that are perfect for most people. They are cute and at some point I think we’ll probably have chickens but now isn’t the time! It costs money to keep backyard chickens so you have to decide if this is a factor for you. They do all of this while providing great entertainment around the homestead! I needed something friendly due to grandchildren. Thnak you again for your candor. The Ultimate Quail Feed Guide, zoned for noise, nuisance, sanitation etc, Treats That Will Make Your Hens Lay More Eggs, A History of Chickens: Then (1900) Vs Now (2020), Backyard Chickens: A Practical Handbook to Raising Chickens. Having backyard chickens is a subject a mere five years ago I knew nothing about. Lots of  friends have come over to see our set-up, and now two of them have chicks of their own. You have to scrub down the coop, spray or dust in every crevice and spray or dust your birds. Chickens like to eat greens. We did not have an official henhouse for years. Chickens need a safe and secure henhouse. We have had minimal problem here in the city. They don’t need much room to be happy (of course, it depends on how many you keep) and you’ll get a taste of keeping your own animals and collecting your own food – fresh from your mini-farm. Keeping chickens this past year has been a fun and educational experience for my whole family. Raising Goats – The Complete How To Guide, What Do Quails Eat? You now have an egg-eater, who will deliberately break eggs to eat. If you don’t gather your eggs every day, the chicken might accidentally break one. Thank you for sharing your expertise! As I mentioned above, chickens like to eat just about everything, so they will try the broken egg. 2) Chickens are not cheap! I didn’t like them. You also control the cleanliness of your chicken coop and can play a direct role in ensuring your chickens’ health as a means of contributing to your own good health. But once you made the decision and got your first chooks laying their fresh and delicious eggs there is no looking back! Consider Costs. Crossing my fingers that I have it licked! Would you believe there are entire communities dedicated to raising backyard chickens? Not such.reliable layers anymore, but still so entertaining. She’s affectionate and smart. As I mentioned in an earlier post, I would recommend backyard chickens to almost anyone. However, something was holding me back. When you go on vacation, you will need to find someone to gather eggs every day to prevent this from happening. I enjoy the chicken chores, and we haven’t dealt with parasites (so far) but we’ve lost three sweet hens to illness and deal with predatory hawks on a daily basis. But like I said, they are great to have around, I love eating the fresh eggs! I appreciate you sharing the not so fun aspects of keeping chickens. We don’t want to deter you from keeping these beautiful creatures, but for the best interests of you and the bird we are going to take a real world look at keeping chickens. I can think of about 9,999 reasons not to have a baby, but I wouldn’t trade my kid for the world. I love keeping chickens and to me they are more than worth any work they give me. I literally spent the last few days figuring out which coop with a run to get and what chickens I would want. We had a “makeshift coop” and kept it heated. . We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites. etc. Chickens enjoy bugs and have no qualms about uprooting flower beds and ripping out freshly laid mulch to get to them. Chickens are terrific for keeping the bug population down. Sub-forums: … Your dog has all the calcium she needs for strong, healthy bones. Your post has definitely made me think twice. Every breed as different needs, temperament, an activity level. What are you going to do with an old chicken that doesn’t lay anymore? Say good-bye to harmful pesticides, herbicides, and fertilizers in your backyard. Some let me pick them up to be held, especially.the silkies. But while keeping chickens may seem quaint, it’s a bit more complicated than you might think. So now you are a Backyard Chicken Keeper without any Backyard Eggs. I love having my gals, but I think you are right. They all receive training as part of their course to treat birds. There is one reason not to get backyard chickens though… They’re a commitment. In addition to fresh eggs, there are a lot of benefits to keeping chickens in an urban setting. Great blog and great post! I’m glad I didn’t read this before my endeavor or I wouldn’t have my roo and girls. Amen! They poop everywhere. I do give them fruit that is slightly overripe - bananas are a favorite (of my girls). For now I will admire my neighbors flock from a distance. had some for 6 years! The trendiness of backyard chicken keeping has been on the rise over the past few years and there are plenty of great reasons why. I agree people should know what they are getting themselves into beforehand versus mistreating or not properly caring for the animal. I am in the middle of this battle and it is no fun! For pests, you can try natural diatomous earth, it is cheap and effective. The Definitive List of Chicken Treats: What Can Chickens Eat? Awesome post. Not legal here in our town, but.no one has ever.complained. Can you tell me why one of my hens is now refusing to sleep in the coup with two others, instead sitting on the grass near my bedroom door. So there are our top five reasons why we think you should get chickens, but it wouldn’t be fair of us to say this without mentioning the less glamorous side of keeping chickens… 6. Animals such as raccoons, hawks, opossums, foxes and dogs should not be able to get into their run or coop. Even though the information is all correct, raising them has been easier than it sounded for me. When it is 10 degrees the chickens can’t go outside, they spend all day in the pen and it has to get cleaned out- alot!! 5 Reasons NOT to Raise Backyard Chickens. You need to check on your chickens every day. Now after reading your blog, I have decided that chickens are not for me. If you just want eggs, you should just get store bought! You see, there’s a reality to chicken keeping that doesn’t show up when you are scanning Pinterest for gorgeous coops. Is Keeping Chickens In Your Garden For You? Chickens like to scratch and peck. We also love the fact that keeping chickens in our backyard, helps our kids understand the importance of nature and where the eggs come from. I’m still a little nervous about culling them when they are past their peak, but I have them for eggs and pets, and without one or the other, they get replaced. We have 3 cats and and puppy. Bird droppings smell. If you add up all the upkeep of the above conditions we were working with, the costs were outweighing the benefits. They are like small goats. Why you should not raise chickens 1) Chickens will destroy your landscaping. .I love this challenge and my girls . How To Store Your Chickens’ Freshly Laid Eggs. Yes, diatomaceous earth is helpful in the control of mites. In this video I discuss some of the benefits of having backyard chickens. Because some breeds of chickens prefer to be handled more then others they can be a joy to have as a first pet for a child. Most people keep chickens for eggs. We'll go over these effects soon, but this is definitely something you want to pay attention to- which is why I'm listing it twice. The chickens do a darn good job keeping bugs and weeds at bay, and besides, the hens will peck at anything and everything to check it out, so don’t put anything out … Would you feed your chicken with an eye dropper if it stopped eating? Even with automation like an automatic chicken coop door, you have to check in on them once in a while, feed and water them daily, and collect eggs at least once a day. Please make sure the same is true with you before you order some cute, fluffy chicks. We’ve heard horror stories from other chicken keepers about troubles with foxes, weasels, cats, and hawks. They can get bored, which leads to gruesome acts such as feather picking (Where they pull feathers out of their companions). In other words, you can’t just get one chicken or it will be depressed and lonely. Thanks for the “Big picture” refresher course. For the past few weeks we have been incubating eggs that have just begun to hatch. In case I’m not conveying how gross this is, you can see egg clusters around the base of feathers, scabs on your chickens butts and poop from the mites stuck in their feathers. I’m glad that you didn’t get in over your head. Still the girls did well, the work was minimal and the eggs amazing. Ouch. . Where did the chickens go? Chickens need special diets for different stages of their lives. But if you need a little convincing, here are 10 reasons to keep backyard chickens (townies included!) They are a lot of work, I think the winter is the most work. When you collect eggs from your own birds, you know you are getting free range, healthy eggs from healthy birds. From bringing your chicks home for the first time to putting eggs on the table, we’ve got it all covered. You need to keep them warm (but not too warm), you need to feed them special food, make sure their butts don’t paste up with droppings (fatal), make sure they don’t drown in their water dish, etc. Its so rewarding keeping chickens! Thanks for the real talk. It's just what they do. On the porch, the walkways, the swing set and fort, the outdoor chairs and benches... everywhere. Instead of overpaying at the store, when you rely on your birds for fertilizer you can rest easy knowing that it will be high in potassium, nitrogen, and phosphorus. That is the point where they decide they love the taste. Now I could talk for hours about having chickens! Just like I don’t think dogs or cats are for everyone. Chickens produce eggs….arguements that they will contribute to food … Although you can let them out in the winter ( remember to shovel first) they just do not like the snow in there feathered feet. Grasss clippings are fine and so is cabbage, lettuce, kale, broccoli, etc. As chickens have become more popular, communities have found ways to make it legal to keep chickens. Obviously these weren’t big enough cons to keep me from having chickens, but to some people they might be. There are many reasons to raise backyard chickens are here are my top 11 reasons why raising chickens could be for you. A good source of information on chickens in getting books on chicken breeds and going on the different chicken breed sites. Very Few Chicken Predators in the City. My stepsons gave my husband a chicken for Father’s Day. She sat on my lap (towel first of course) and let me pet her. I don’t think I need to elaborate on that one. We do post about other things too!) I just stumbled across this post and really enjoyed it. Why You Should Not Keep Backyard Chickens, Prosthelytzing and Vilifying | Brooklyn Feed. Yes, even the roosters can have layer feed. Some breeds like the Cochin love being bathed, petted, carried, talked to and even try to come in your house if they want you or food. Want to start keeping backyard chickens? Parasites can kill your bird, so you have to deal with them. Also, if you have a covered chicken run with the coop in the run it will make it easier to take care of the coop and run( no snow to shovel or rain in the run). I cannot believe someone in that profession would refuse. As long as you plan to keep the girls (and boys) alive, I say go ahead and give it a try – it’s not so difficult as long as you are dedicated. Keeping backyard chickens allows you to become a food producer and not just a consumer. Threads 7.3K Messages 112.2K. Then the other day my neighbor gave me some more eggs, blue this time, and they had a peculiar flavor. After the run was built, she loved her new home. Winters get pretty bad here . As I said though….love them♥♥. We have brought our chickens to the local elementary school for their harvest fair and had our daughters pre-school class come to visit. Chicks are cute and fluffy for about 2 weeks. I have 3 pullets, 18 weeks old, and one hen. 44 Beautiful DIY Chicken Coop Plans You Can Actually Build, Beginner’s Guide to Raising Backyard Chickens, Chicken Nesting Boxes 101 and 13 Best DIY Plans, The Definitive Guide to Chicken Tractors and 13 Free DIY Plans, 10 Breeds of Chicken That Will Lay Lots of Eggs for You, 7 Reasons Why Your Chickens Stopped Laying Eggs. Entertainment and Companionship. It’s great that your neighbors give you eggs! Plain and simple. For the hens you need oster shells in or with their feed for hard egg shells. Having a backyard flock of chickens is a great way to get fresh eggs. If they don’t get the proper, balanced nutrition they might have problems with feathers breaking off, or eggs coming out with soft shells (or no shells!). Perhaps, I can find some to visit! It’s the flies that really would push me over the edge, I think! Ammonia is bad for the birds to breathe and it is bad for us to smell. Here’s a list of what NOT to feed chickens if you want to keep them healthy! Have I lost you yet? Are you willing/able to diagnose what’s wrong with your chicken? Good luck to all that are thinking of getting chickens. There are not many vets who take chickens. I have 13 adult chickens and 5 babies, I enjoy watching them run around the yard. You have to keep fresh unfrozen water in the pen, and constantly change the bedding. Threads 7.3K Messages 112.2K. That means not only grass, but also the lettuce you planted, the unripe blueberries you are waiting to eat, the ferns you just planted. That means that backyard hens are often fed garden scraps, scratch, treats, as well as chicken feed and owners have the option to feed them organic feed if they wish to do so and to allow their birds to forage for bugs and other critters in their yards. My neighbors just got chickens about the same time my dogs starting itching. That is how so many animals end up abandoned or in shelters. In my opinion, my 10 girls are way more work and worry for me than my dog or parrot!! Keeping backyard chickens is certainly not something that suits everyone. People who keep chickens in their backyard can control the diet the hens receive. There is no reason every family in … I have had chickens for 7 years and have been breeding for 6 years and have not looked back. Chickens can’t control their bowels like cats and dogs, so you could get hit at any time. Roosters excluded, hens are actually quieter than barking dogs. Until my husband built her a “Fort Knox run,” she lived in her coop on our deck. Would you be able to humanely kill your chicken if it got mauled by a predator? I would appreciate your help with this. After reading your reasons fo not having chickens, I realized that although I wanted chickens, I didn’t want “all” that came with them. (If you don’t follow us, why not? After 3 years of having our chickens, here are the 5 things I wish I had really known before committing to raising backyard chickens. She has become my obsession and I have taken her over completely. You must clean daily and beach the coop every 6 … If you are looking at getting chickens but are not 100% sure, then this article is for you. Your email address will not be published. While this is the obvious reason, there is more to it than you might think. Fresh Eggs. Also, you do not have to have more then one if you buy them as a chick. You need to be able to keep your hens warm in the winter, cool in the summer. Hi Lyndsay, Without seeing your setup it is hard to say why your hen is refusing to go inside. What to feed them for optimal health and egg laying, including if you’re on a tight budget. 1. 1. I was honestly stressed a great deal about the mite situation. There you will find how to take care of chickens and about the different breeds. The key thing here is not to put the chickens before the coop, and to research as much as possible so as to not end up with the consequences of a poorly and rashly made decision. The costs were not worth it for me any longer. Again, most vets won’t take chickens, even to put them down. I take her on escorted walks in the yard. Check out the top 10 reasons why you should keep a few backyard chickens. Most communities find some way to allow chickens in urban and suburban settings. . A better diet, means better eggs. 1. I prefer that people know what they are getting themselves into rather than abandon or mistreat an animal. Threads 472 Messages 67.9K. The Social Aspect . Fresh, Organic Eggs. Many urban homeowners increasingly desire to keep small flocks of chickens in their backyards, and with good cause. . Good post. When composted … I don't know about other people's chickens but if I offered mine only fruit rinds they would stand there and laugh at me. For example, an excellent breed that loves to stay in the coop during the winter because it does not like being in snow is the Standard Cochin. Glad to hear from another chicken keeper! We think of our hens as pets so we don’t mind the chores, but if you just want eggs you’re better off buying them at the store. In the winter you need to make sure their water hasn’t frozen. Just be thankful that it is much easier to put Frontline on a dog than to try and treat chickens! But you definitely look past all the drawbacks and love them regardless! Many people get animals thinking they are cute or fun or whatever and then realize that they are a lot of work. The cute fluffy chicks that arrive need an extreme amount of care and knowledge to keep them healthy. I figured if I’m going to put all this time and money into a pet, it would be one that would give back. I kept reading how they were social animals, so we just bought two more chickens from the same batch. THANK YOU!!! In the summer you need to make sure they have plenty of water and that they aren’t overheating. Hope that helps! . Well, keeping backyard chickens is one way of bringing country life to the city! really great post, ive had my girls for 8 months now & i love every part of owning & looking after them the good & the bad im pleased that there are sensible people out there who can give such sound advise well done. Top Reasons To Raise Backyard Chickens 1. We added more hens after a few years, lost a few here and there, adopted a few and continued our endeavor . Keeping your own chickens is wholesome, inexpensive and empowering. Whether you introduce a new bird that has lice, or wild birds with mites fly into your yard, you will inevitably have to battle external parasites. 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