bathing chicken???


12 Years
Jan 10, 2008
Guilford County, NC
I have adopted two more chickens.(Don't worry Miss Prissy, I have headed your advice and they are being quarantined to the best of my ability!) My question is, they stink. Can you bathe a chicken? They were "strays" that lived in this man's yard with about thirty other chickens. Recently, a restaurant moved in next door to him and now all the chickens hang in the parking lot waiting for hand outs. When animal control was called he denied they were his!
I told them that if they wanted to catch the others, just wait until dusk and take them out of the man's coops! Anyway, just wondering if I could bathe them and if so, with what?
A sink works best, but if that's not an option a bucket is ok.
With warm water, get them thoroughly wet. Well, besides their face, but you get the picture. Then with some dawn dish soap (or something similar) squirt some on their back and lather it up, be sure to get under their wings and on their tummy, not just their back. Rinse them as well as you can. Then dilute some white vineager in water, you don't need much, and rinse it over the chicken. It cuts all the soapy residue off them. Rinse them again in NEW clean water so you dont get the soap right back on them, and then wrap them in a towel for 10 mins to help soak some of the water out so they dry faster. They you can blow dry them if they're tolerant to it (though most breeds besides silkies arent) or just put them in the sun somewhere warm.
Tada, clean and good smelling chicken!
I gave my rescued silkie a bath when i first got her, she was muddy and wet. I did it in much the same manner as decribed above but I did not know about the vinegar part. I wrapped her in towel for awhile and then she stood by heater until dry. I have since given her another bath too. She doesn't mind it too much.
I think I will try and tackle it this weekend. These hens don't seem like they have ever been handled. The white one is visabley (sp?) dirty and they both smell bad. I am keeping them quarentined in my boiler closet for now, and they stink up the whole room! (no, it is not inside the house...I don't think I could take that inside!) So far no signs of illness that I can tell, and they are eating/drinking very well.
*Hi there! I have a white chicken & she gets a bath bout once a month. I use tearless baby shampoo, a little *in the water*, and the water is almost hot to my hand-- because chicken's body temp is higher than ours. I stand her in the soapy water & use a small cup to pour the water on her, rubbing a little where she's really dirty, changing water once if she really needs it-- & rinse with a rubber pop-on spray head, wrap her towel her (takes 2 usually) & blow-dry ON MEDIUM & KEEP IT MOVING!! Chook LOVES the blow-dryer!! Voila!! Sparkling Chickee-Bawk!!! Oh, I DON'T let her NEAR bare dirt until she's TOTALLY dry-- cuz she WILL throw herself right in it & roll--!!! Sunny grass is great, tho
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I have bathed almost all of the "broiler" rescues and what I used was 1/2 baby shampoo and 1/2 betadine. Since yours is likely to not have any wounds just plain ol' generic baby shampoo will work.
Get them wet in the sink and soap them up, rinse away and you are good to go. Use a blow dryer or a space heater to get them dry. I know the boys here loved fluffing themselves up in front of the heater!

This was BFC (big fat chicken) succumbing to the heaters warmth:
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I had cochin bantams as a kid that I would bathe for 4-H showmanship before the fairs every summer. I set up a card table in the sun and bathed them with Dawn. Rinse really well!

I hesitate to admit this, but I did my 4-H Senior "talk" on how to prepare a chicken for show!
The easiest way I have found to bathe is to have two buckets or other suitable containers (if inside I place in the shower or bathtub as this is easy to properly disinfect afterwards)...
In one bucket I place water and tearless baby shampoo into the water and mix well and the other bucket is used for a rinse (so just plain water) .... place bird in the soapy water and "swish around a few times ... I "scrub" their legs/veet with a paint brush.
then place bird in the "rinse" bucket" and swish...
To dry place bird in a cardboard box (old clean towel on bottom) >this box should have a few holes in the side also) and use a hair dryer (aimed from the top of the open box but also through the sides)... be careful it is not too hot. The cardboard box holds the warmth in and contains the bird leaving your hands free.
Ive done it too...When we went to our first Chickenstock in 2004, hosted by belh I felt that our ladies needed to look and smell pretty because they were meeting other birds and needed to make a good impression.

Here's Obelisk...doesn't she look pathetic? LOL

Slifer at the end in a towel.

Obelisk being blown dry by my DS (old Pic) LOL

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