Do chickens really enjoy taking a bath in water?!!

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by sillysparrowness, Aug 7, 2011.

  1. sillysparrowness

    sillysparrowness Out Of The Brooder

    Jun 16, 2011
    Hello! I need your experience!

    I've gotten into a controversy with a youtuber (I know, you shouldn't do that...) about a video called "swimming chicken", where some (I think) dumb guy puts a chicken into his swimming pool and honestly thinks that's ok and the chicken enjoyed taking a bath on that hot day. I know chicken are able to swim (some better than others) but I don't think they enjoy it or would do that voluntarily. However, the video recieved a few negative comments and when another youtuber defended the guy by saying the chicken actually seems happy and that chickens love baths anyway, I couldn't resist disagreeing. (I probably shouldn't have called him stupid, I know, but I think, it's straight animal abuse and the chicken doesn't look happy at all, but terrified and exhausted, so I got a bit emotional...).

    So no wonder he trolled back at me, that's fine, but what irritated me: He claimed: "I have grown up on a farm, my hens would frequently sit in a bowl of water and splash around washing themselves. even in the winter they would happily be washed and blow dried to ensure they are clean. avoid their heads and they will enjoy a luke warm bath on a hot summer day. Perhaps you should tell my hens off for climbing into their water basin."

    I grew up with chickens as well and honestly, I've never seen them taking a bath in water, although they hat all the opportunities in the world to do that. I've seen birds do it, but never chickens! That seriously confused me!
    Do your chickens climb into their water basins? Maybe in areas where it gets REALLY hot in the summer?
    Do they really like water? What do you think?

    Thanks for your help!
  2. afchicken

    afchicken Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 7, 2011
    all animals are different some ppl bath chickens for shows which i would imagine gets them acclimated and i have chickens that like being in water that is up to their feahters sometimes and i live in ohio not too hot there
  3. Imp

    Imp All things share the same breath- Chief Seattle

    I have a pond in my backyard. I have never had a chicken swim in it. Drink out of it; stand on the wet plants in it, but not swim.
    My chicks sometimes get the "crazies" and climb in and out of their water bowl. Adults are more sedate.
    I have heard that chickens are not waterproof and will eventually get waterlogged and drown. [​IMG]

    I know the video that you are talking about. I thought teen age boys put the chicken in the water, not that the chicken went swimming.


    ETA- A lot of people say their chickens like getting a bath. They get very calm. Maybe due to the warm water?
    Last edited: Aug 7, 2011
  4. suki'smom

    suki'smom Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 4, 2011
    Central Wisconsin
    I used to have hens that would walk through a turtle sandbox with a few inches of water in warmer weather but they would not "bathe" themselves.
  5. jjthink

    jjthink Overrun With Chickens

    Jan 17, 2007
    New Jersey
    I would bet the farm that almost all chickens would not like 'swimming' unless the water were very shallow such that their feet could very comfortably be on the ground and in a situation where there is an easy exit point or points. The exceptions would be rare and would include very carefully trained/acclimated chickens.
    1 person likes this.
  6. Amethyste

    Amethyste For Love of Boo...

    I never had hens that would "swim" per se...but many times i have seen the girls splashing around in the kiddie pool I set up for them like over-sized robins. Looks like they dustbathe, but in the water. They flop and splash and lounge...its very shallow.

    The few times I have given them a proper bath they seemed to really enjoy it and get into it. Even seemed rather sad and disappointed <as only a chicken can look lol> when it was over and the blow dryer was turned off.

    But I have to say, they do love that kiddie pool something terrible [​IMG] I think they think they are part duck or something....
  7. sillysparrowness

    sillysparrowness Out Of The Brooder

    Jun 16, 2011
    That sounds nice! I'm almost sad now that mine don't splash around in the water... Maybe if I gave them a pool? [​IMG]
  8. galanie

    galanie Treat Dispenser No More

    Aug 20, 2010
    I've seen that video too and I can bet you that chicken didn't enjoy being thrown into a pool. Now if it went in on it's own, that would be a different story.
  9. Hummingbird Hollow

    Hummingbird Hollow Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 1, 2011
    Colorado mountains
    I've stopped watching the "funny animal" videos on Youtube because so many of them are just animal cruelty that someone thinks is funny. Once I clicked on a "funny kitten" video where this kitten was frantically trying to get out of a clump of cactus. Can you imagine anyone being that cruel and calling it funny!!!! I still get an upset stomach thinking about it...getting nauseous right now as a matter of fact and I must have seen that video a year ago. No, while bathing a chicken that needs a bath may be enjoyable to it or irritating to it depending on the chicken (my dog needs the occasional bath and while she doesn't like it, it has to be done anyway) and while a chicken might choose to stand and/or splash around in a shallow pool of water, throwing a chicken in a swimming pool is the same as tying tin cans to the tail of a stray dog...finding enjoyment in some other creatures fear and suffering. I'm going to go watch my chickens have a dirt bath and try to get my mind off that poor kitten.
  10. sillysparrowness

    sillysparrowness Out Of The Brooder

    Jun 16, 2011
    Yeah, I know... I know I shouldn't watch animal videos either,... but especially with chickens in it. It seems like people care even less about, say how to hold a chicken without causing pain or heavy distress or chasing it. When I started watching youtube videos I was really fascinated by the diversity, to the point where I thought, you could find anything on youtube (or the internet). Quite wrong: Finding a decent video about chickens, very rare. Like most animal videos, it's either "oh look, a chicken... standing around, how extraordinay" a.k.a. boring or "oh look, it's swimming in a pool/fighting a dog" a.k.a. upsetting. This is why I'm so glad there are chickens forums like this, it's somewhat comforting to know that I'm not the only person with the quirk of dearly loving chickens. Incidentally, I'm currently starting to videoblog myself, so far I just uploaded the introduction of my outro, at least featuring an animated chicken... and the voices of my hens (if you are interested:, but I'm definitely planinng several videos about chickens, f. ex. about chicken communication.

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