Chickens and rain. Will they get sick if they get wet?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Jody, Nov 14, 2009.

  1. Jody

    Jody Songster

    Nov 8, 2009
    Epping, NH
    It's raining right now and is very wet and chilly. I haven't let my chickens out of the coop today to use the run.

    Should I leave them inside on rainy days so that they don't get wet and muddy? I don't want them to get sick. Or, is it ok to let them out on rainy days.

    Oh, also.. it's muddy right now too, so I think my white chicken will turn brown and black if I let her out and it's too cold for a bath.
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 20, 2016
  2. Uppity Peon

    Uppity Peon Songster

    They can take rain quite well. Just make sure they have dry sheltered places to go when they want to.
  3. Jody

    Jody Songster

    Nov 8, 2009
    Epping, NH
    Well, I let them out a few hours ago. went out for a bit, and I come back and they're soaked and filthy [​IMG]

    The black star and plymouth rock don't look so bad.. just very wet.. the white leghorn looks terrible. All of them have muddy feet. I want to clean their feet and maybe towel them up a bit, but pesky birds won't let me catch them and if I do catch one it gets away flapping around.
    AngiPorter likes this.
  4. Kotiya

    Kotiya In the Brooder

    Jun 11, 2009
    South-West Ohio
    Mine like the rain. They free range all day, and have a large coop and garage to go to if the rain bothers them. They've surprised me a number of times when I thought they wouldn't come out (pooring down), but they wander and seem to be having fun. I think they like the bugs that come out. They also seem to take really good care of getting themselves cleaned up. I suppose ducks are made for water, why not chickens? [​IMG]
    AngiPorter likes this.
  5. Tala

    Tala Flock Mistress

    It seems like they stay pretty dry under the feathers, despite looking like drown rats. Mine only hide when it pours hard, anything less and they're all out in it.
  6. biddyboo

    biddyboo Songster

    Apr 27, 2008
    Ashland, Missouri
    Keeping chickens is new for us too, and I stressed and worried about the hens and rain until I observed them on our various "bad" weather days. Like others have said, the hens for the most part choose to be out and about in rainy weather, choosing only when the wind blows to take shelter. Even though they have access to the coop and its dry shavings, they'll almost always shelter UNDER the coop, still preferring outdoors to indoors. The weather that consistently seems to drive them to shelter is wind. From this, I determined that winter weather will be okay most of the time for them except when it's windy and wet (rain, sleet, snow). For this reason, we are constructing an 8 x 12 run just inside the barn from their fenced chicken yard and coop. They'll have a pop door opened for them from the space under their coop into the run inside the barn. I plan to put deep pine shavings down in the run to handle poo. A heated waterer and feeder will be in the run for them as well as a couple of low saw horses for roosts. If they choose, they can be snug in nasty weather, but (laughing) I suspect I'll still find them scratching around outside in their yard in a blizzard come February! ~G
  7. chickensioux

    chickensioux Songster

    Feb 12, 2009
    Western North Carolina
    I have some that run under the coop and stay there til it stops and some that act like it's not even raining. Just like people....
  8. Ibicella

    Ibicella Songster

    Nov 13, 2009
    Everett, WA
    Rain is prime worm-hunting weather! [​IMG]

    I live in Washington, rain is a fact of life here for most of the year. Chickens tend to have thick insulating feathers underneath the longer guard feathers, so they do fine in the rain so long as they have dry space to get out of it. They know when they've had enough.
  9. sbates

    sbates In the Brooder

    Oct 27, 2009
    My chickens seem completely oblivious to most rain. The goats will hide at the first drop but the chickens always go out in it. No ill affects thus far.
  10. g_a_brand

    g_a_brand Songster

    May 28, 2009
    Debert, Nova Scotia
    Today was our chickens 1st day in the new run ( only had a small one called the play pen )
    it was misting most of the day , but it did start raining and most of them stayed out in it ( 4 came in )
    they even put them selves to bed without us chasing them back into the coop.... smart chickies [​IMG] [​IMG]
    granted the ones that stayed outside look like drown rats lol but they were cleaning and fluffing themselves when we closed up the coop ... silly girls

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