Getting My First Baby Chicks - Need a Safe Place For Them!


In the Brooder
7 Years
Oct 2, 2012
My coop is on order, and I am picking up some baby chicks next week!

I need to know what is best to keep them in while they are little. It MUST be cat-proof, as I have two cats and do not want them to manage to hurt them.

Any suggestions? Even if there is some kind of chick brooder that I can just buy somewhere. Would farm supply stores have something like that?

I am completely new to this, so any and all suggestions are helpful.
I have heard that a large cardboard box will work or a child's wading pool. I'm not sure what it's called but the feed store uses one of those silver water troughs. You can cover whatever you use with a wire top. I would try to keep them where your cats can't get to them. Cats are pretty resourceful. The most important thing is keeping them warm. Baby chicks are really susceptible to drafts and will pile on top of each other to keep warm. The ones on the bottom will die. Good Luck with your chicks!
Yeah, you will have to be really careful of the cats. You'll need a sturdy cover that won't collapse if the cats jump on top, which they are very likely to do in their curiosity.

I use a large wooden box and my husband made a wire cover for it with a 2 x 4 frame and hardware cloth. I've also used large cardboard boxes but I kept them where my cats could not get to the box at all. We've used refridgerator boxes and sometimes gotten a couple toilet paper boxes from the grocery store and taped them together to make a nice big box.

Make sure whatever you get is large and sturdy enough to support your heat lamp, unless you are able to hang from overhead.
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Is there a room in the house you could keep closed off from the cats? Like an empty bedroom, office/study, or laundry room? In my old house we had a 'mud room' off the garage that I could use.

I have 9 cats so my chickies are in my RV in a huge box. Added bonus: running water and I can turn the heat on if they need extra warmth!!
Our cat has been living in the bedroom for the last week. She isn't too happy, but she is dealing with it.

I figure it won't be long before the babies can be moved to the garage so the cat just has to suffer through it. Our cat happens to be more kitten, so the babies would be toast(we had an older cat with chicks before and the cat couldn't care less about them), she is also a resourceful bugger and therefore keeping her locked up is the best course of action for now.

Good Luck with your first batch of chicks!! They are great fun!!
I made a brooder from a plastic tote that I cut most of the top out of the lid and screwed hardware fabric over the hole. The heat lamp rested on the hardware fabric on the side of the tote. My cat could see the chicks and watched them closely but he could not get into the box. He would occasionally pat the side of the box.

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