Heat Remedies - A Public Service Advisory


11 Years
Mar 19, 2008
Scenic Jackson New Jersey
We had a spate of really hot AND humid days here this past weekend. It was brutal, near 100 degrees AND humid !!

I know I was really feeling the effects, and our birds were too, they were panting and very beady eyed. I searched here for ideas and after reading some and trying out some things of our own I should post this advice:

1) if it is very hot and your birds are really suffering, give them cold food - I saw in one thread people mentioned cold watermelon, cooked rice that was then refrigerated (I know I give our girls cooked angel hair pasta with fresh and frozen vegetables - essentially Pasta Prima Vera).

2) We water down our deck (for our own comfort) and the water trickles thru and makes the ground underneath damp - our birds love that cool, damp shade. We also run sprinklers to keep the area around their coop very moist - as breezes blow nearby it really cools things down.

3) If it is really hot and you have a basement or cellar (or your house is air conditioned and have pet carriers you can put them in those and keep them down there until the heat breaks, letting them out for some free ranging in the evening. Our Rooster Anthony is a Bantam Cochin and I think that breed can't handle the heat like our Wyandottes. We came outside Monday morning to find him gasping for air (it broke our hearts to see him suffering). We put him in a carrier lined with a soft towel and put him in the basement for the day (it broke 100 that day), he had a bowl of ice water and some feed speckled with some treats. That night we let him out to free range with his girls and we put him back downstairs for a sleepover in the basement. Next morning real early we let him out (it was only 84 that day and not humid) and he crowed for a good half hour and did his little "crab walk" to let the girls know "The Boss" was back in town. LOL, it made us feel so good...

Just doing something so simple really helped. I know the tremendous relief we felt when we "beat it" and want you all to be happier too. I'm no expert - but I love my birds. And it pains me to see so many people upset when they have problems with their birds like we did. I think a little common sense and some TLC for them, like you would give yourself, would go a long way. If you have ideas you have tried or suggestions add them here for the others who surely will be running into the same issues as the Summer heat climbs.

Good luck

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Premium Feather Member
11 Years
Mar 25, 2008
Thanks for that info! I am always looking for as many ideas as I can get to try and help my chickens stay cool. It was over 100 degrees here for 5 days and the chickens were all miserable. They ate LOTS of cold watermelon and had ice water, cold lettuce, etc...

Thanks again for the great advice.


12 Years
Aug 13, 2007
near Charlotte NC
I would recommend too that when planning your chicken run/coop, think about summer temps.

I have my run under the shadest part of the yard - there are nice big trees that shade about 1/2 of the run. When it's hot, the chickens hang out in the shade and dust bathe to expose the cooler ground. While it's been near 100 degrees here the last week or so, I've not had any problems with overheated chickens.

If they had not had the shade, or had to be up in their coop, then I think it would have been a different story all together.

And, of course lots of good fresh water!


In the Brooder
11 Years
Jun 12, 2008
Fort Mill SC
yes I think the heat caused one of my Red's to die Monday but I took flight netting and covered their openings of their nests to give them more of a breeze. Have been putting cooler water out there 2 to 3 times a day. wetting the ground. Trying to think of an inexpensive way to give them more shade. I have 21 year old girls and 24 reds 12 weeks old.

I love my Girls and it broke my heart to open the coop and her fall out at my feet!

Thanks for your note because I'm new at this and at least my thinking is right for my girl's my husband thought I was crazy telling him to give them cool or frozen stuff!
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In the Brooder
13 Years
Jan 14, 2007
Charlotte, NC
+1 for the cold watermelon! It calmed the panting instantly.

We tried all sorts of tricks but over 95 degrees even a stiff breeze doesn't help. We splurged for a $99 air conditioner with a thermostat. Keeps the coop cool, but not cold and gives us peace of mind.

Nothing but the best for Mr. Joy and the gang.


11 Years
Apr 29, 2008
Decatur, TN
Thanks for all the great tips and reminders. Also don't forget about adding electrolytes to their water. That will also help them replenish their bodies with much needed electrolytes during this excessive heat wave. It's probably only going to get worse before it gets better.

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