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Planning a vacation can be a bit of pain, especially if you have pets. Can you take a vacation even if you have chickens? There aren’t chicken kennels that you can book your birds into. So how do you take a vacation when you have backyard birds? Here are some tips to help you get out this summer and enjoy yourself even when you have urban chickens.
Here are some tips on how to take a vacation when you have chickens:
If you know you want to take a long trip, planning ahead can help you find someone who is willing to farm sit for you. Don’t spring these types of things last minute or you’ll be scrambling.
Ask a neighbor, or a teen who can drive.
If you can, find someone who is able to pop over to your property once or twice a day and let your birds in and out and top up their food and water. Make sure they know they are welcome to the eggs. And make sure to pay them too!
Predator proof your chicken yard.
If your birds have a safe area where they can roam, then you may not even need someone to stop by every day. Predator proof your chicken yard so you don’t have to worry about locking up the coop each night. Click here for tips on predator proofing.
Install a solar chicken door.
If you have the budget, an automatic chicken door like this one will let your ladies in and out each night without you having to do a thing. I’d like to have one of these even when I’m NOT on vacation, just so I don’t have to worry about finding skunks in my coop if I get home after dark!
Use an automatic feeder.
If you have an automatic feeder or an extra large feeder, your birds can be well fed for more than a week at a time. Once again, this is something that makes keeping backyard chickens more pleasant even when you ARE home!
Use an automatic waterer.
An automatic waterer is an absolute must if you aren’t going to be home in the summer. When it’s hot outside, chickens MUST have access to clean water, and it’s just not worth risking their water getting spilled or muddied when you’re not around to check on them. Here’s how to make a portable 5 gallon waterer.
Check the weather.
If you can’t have someone check on your birds and keep an eye on them in hot weather, it might be a good idea for you to schedule your vacation during a mild time of the year. If you leave your birds in the middle of a heat wave with no supervision, they may not all make it.
Just do it!
I tend to overly stress about things, but when it comes down to it, we can’t stop living our lives because of worrying about what MIGHT happen. Keeping chickens is awesome, but you have to be able to live your life at the same time. If you’ve prepared well, just go on your vacation and enjoy yourself!
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