A Brooder question

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Whitney13, May 24, 2010.

  1. Whitney13

    Whitney13 Songster

    May 14, 2010
    Malvern, AR
    Okay, I am getting about 25 baby chicks at the end of the week and since it will be storming here I am going to keep them inside for a week or two. I live with my grandparents and they aren't to crazy about the idea of 25 baby chickens in the house, again. [​IMG] They will not let me use a brooder lamp in the house because they say it might catch something on fire. My question is, is there any alternatives to a brooder lamp that would be safer if there are any at all?
    For a brooder I am useing a extra-large wire dog crate in a cardboard box from a washing machine with pine litter and paper towels on the floor. After it stops storming they will be moving into a seperate part of my chicken house until they are old enough to join the flock and I will start useing a brooder light and get rid of the cardboard box because there are no drafts in that part of the chicken house.
    Any advice at all would help.

  2. debilorrah

    debilorrah The Great Guru of Yap Premium Member

    Oh dear. Use a red bulb and explain to them that the only way it could catch on fire is if there is cloth layed over it. Chicks NEED heat, period. Nothing else is gonna work. Hot water bottles? They need that lamp.
  3. micaheart

    micaheart In the Brooder

    Apr 5, 2010
    They absolutely need that heat. Can you rig up the brooder light with a chain and then use the cord as a safety net (if for some reason the chain broke)? Or some such system that would guarantee (and convince Grandparents) that light could not possibly fall and catch anything on fire. Make sure your light is 18 inches away from anything flammable. It's also better of course, if you have a tub or something rather than cardboard, but if the lamp is far enough away AND guaranteed that the lamp won't get close enough, it really should be fine.

    I had a friend who used a dog house with a little heater and that worked. Also,

    I've read you can use a box with the flaps down and have warm cloth and/or feathers hanging down into the box from the sides and tops (feather dusters, feather boas,) that they can all cuddle into together. Maybe something like that with a heating pad hooked onto the inside of the box as well. That would probably work. Just something that can get into that is warm enough...and then places they can get away to where they can be cooler.

    But a light would be the simplest.... Good luck!
  4. rileyboy

    rileyboy In the Brooder

    May 22, 2010
    You can use a heating pad (the kind that plug in, for example a heating blanket folded up with a towel on top) but it has to be set up so the chicks and still get away from the heat if they want to.
    Last edited: May 25, 2010
  5. JLS

    JLS Love my feathered babies!

    May 29, 2009
    My Coop
    A friend of mine uses her dear husband's home office to brood her chicks. She cranks the heat up to 85 and keeps the door shut (to keep the heat in). That poor man sits in his office at the end of the day to catch up on calls and paperwork. The sweat pours down his face. Yet he quietly endures the heat, poultry dust, and smell without complaint. Maybe you could increase the heat in the room?? If the chicks are cold they'll let you know!!!
  6. suzyq53511

    suzyq53511 Drowning in Chickens!

    Apr 30, 2010
    I think a heating pad could catch on fire also....
  7. TcherDawn

    TcherDawn Granite State Chook

    Jan 30, 2009
    Prescott, AZ
    There have been two people locally whose house burned down because of chicks (all people lived, chicks and house did not) I can understand their concern. Aren't there ways to attach a heat lamp that make it more safe and secure? I have not had chicks yet, but am getting some at the end of June and have the same question.

  8. Whitney13

    Whitney13 Songster

    May 14, 2010
    Malvern, AR
    Thanks everyone for the responses and I have talked them into letting me use a red light but the chickens have to stay in my bedroom so if a fire does start my "super highly trained" dog [​IMG] will wake everyone up since he going to sleep right by them. I highly doubt Ozzy would even notice if his tail was on fire when he is asleep, much less if the chickens are on fire a couple feet away. I literally have to yell at him some mornings to wake him up but if it makes my grandparents feel safer and my baby chicks stay warm who am I to argue about small things such as a dog who sleeps like the dead?
  9. LauraG

    LauraG Songster

    Apr 13, 2010
    Upstate, NY
    Thats progress! Yes, the heat lamp is vital & a red one will be easier on you and the animals.

    I am always paranoid about fire so I understand the fear, but my chicks are in a spare bedroom with a red heat lamp with a guard. I've had no problems, except 1 bad bulb that died on the second day I had 4 day old chicks....

    ALWAYS have an extra heat bulb on hand!!!!

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