Dog Crate brooder questions

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by bethwood01, Sep 20, 2016.

  1. bethwood01

    bethwood01 Just Hatched

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    How much cooler does the non heated area need to be? I've done some tweaking with the lamp that gets the front area to between 90-95, and the back area is around 86-88.

    Also, I have that fan in the lower right going to keep the area(and hopefully the back of the crate) cooler and I don't feel any draft near the crate, but is it possible there still is one?
     
  2. RoseMary12

    RoseMary12 Out Of The Brooder

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    How old are your chicks? I kept my girls on about 85 at two weeks and declined from there because they were having runny poop.
     
  3. stellagirl

    stellagirl Out Of The Brooder

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    Dog crate, what a neat idea!
     
  4. azygous

    azygous Chicken Obsessed

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    That covered dog carrier may seem like a dandy brooder, but it will be more like an oven, tending to be much too warm since there isn't much room in it for the chicks to find cool spaces. Rule of thumb is one square foot per chick when figuring out the size of your brooding area.

    You would be much better off either getting a nice big cardboard appliance box, like a refrigerator comes in, or just brood directly in your coop or run.

    The point to having a heat source is to provide a very small warming station for the chicks, and the entire remainder of their brooding space should be between 70 and 75F. Or even cooler if you're brooding outdoors, which is what I highly recommend.

    I also recommend using a heating pad instead of a heat lamp. That way you will pretty much assure the chicks will not get overheated, which is a much bigger danger than having their space on the cool side.

    I wrote an article for BYC on the advantages of brooding outdoors. It's linked below this post.
     
    1 person likes this.
  5. bethwood01

    bethwood01 Just Hatched

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    My chicks haven't arrived yet. By the end of this week. I have to have something covered, cats, and I don't have the skills/tools to do one of those big double Rubbermaid things. I also can't spend much more than I have on all the supplies and the coop and such already. We have the coop almost finished, just have to put in the hardware cloth skirt thing to keep predators out. I'm hoping to get them adjusted and moved into their coop at 4 weeks.
     
  6. BlueBaby

    BlueBaby Chillin' With My Peeps

    I brooded out 2 separate sets of my chicks in a large dog crate similar to yours above in a spare bedroom. I had my heat lamp in the back section, though. Food and water were placed near the front of the crate inside of the door opening. They could come, eat, and cool off in that front section. I did not run a fan on mine. I had a batch of 16 the first time (only lost 1 chick that had looked week to begin with). I had 5 in the same dog crate the 2nd time, and didn't loose even one of them. When they were 4 weeks old and were fully feathered, I moved them outside to my coop. They did fine.
     
  7. bethwood01

    bethwood01 Just Hatched

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    The fan is facing away from the crate. I will continually be fiddling with the set-up, if for no other reason than I am a worrier and this is my first time with chicks/chickens. If I find it's not working I will try the heating pad I have, but I believe it has an auto off, so I'd have to set my alarm at night.
     
  8. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

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    Is it possible to put them in the coop now? I agree that would be much better than brooding in the kennel, and in the house period.

    azygous has a great article to get you started. Plus, no dust and crap in the house---right there by your baby's chair, it's going to get pretty [​IMG]
     
  9. bethwood01

    bethwood01 Just Hatched

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    I don't have a safe way to get electricity to the coop for heating. I was reading on here about extension cords and it seems like there's not exactly a completely safe way to do it. And I'm not sure how to get the cords into the coop, but away from the chickens. It's a coop we bought from tsc. But if things are not working, I may consider trying to figure that out also.
     
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2016
  10. bethwood01

    bethwood01 Just Hatched

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    Also, I checked temps again last night after the sun went down and they were perfect. So it looks like it will just need tweaking during the day while that room is a little warmer than the rest of the house.
     

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