How long can hens go with out food or water

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by borrow53, Nov 5, 2013.

  1. borrow53

    borrow53 In the Brooder

    Jan 6, 2013
    I feel so bad for what I have done. I went to let chickens out this morning sorted there food and water out and because its dark in the morning still the chickens were so quite I thought I already let them out from their coop. Went to go put them away at night and they were already in their coop.
    I cannot believe I left them in their coop all day no food or water.
    How bad is it for the hens to go the whole day without any food or water. I have fed them now and given them loads of water but is it bad for them?
  2. Well it is not good, but as you can see they survived. You are only human. We have all done something (or forgotten to do something) that we wish we hadn't.
  3. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Free Ranging

    Feb 2, 2009
    Southeast Louisiana
    Yeah, it’s something I’d try to avoid in the future but don’t beat yourself up that much about it. They’ll be OK. Just live and learn. We all do things we’re not proud to admit.

    A broody hen can easily go all day on the nest without food or water. She lives off stored fat that all your adult chickens have. They’ll act starved but the food yours skipped is not a real big issue. They’ve just used up a bit of stored fat.

    The water is more of an issue. They are not going to die or suffer any long-term damage by going without water for a day, but don’t be shocked if egg production is lower for a while. Going without water like that can stress them to the point they go into a molt or maybe just a mini-molt. You may have some short-term effects from the water but not any real long-term effects. They really will be OK.
  4. nab58

    nab58 Songster

    Mar 28, 2013
    I keep a one gallon milk jug with a nipple waterer inside the coop for just that reason. I'm afraid I'll forget to let them out one day. Glad yours were okay.
  5. borrow53

    borrow53 In the Brooder

    Jan 6, 2013
    Thanks for all your replies, I was afraid they would suffer long term or short term damage from it. but they are happy and healthy and good to see that they are all still laying :)
  6. ChirpyChicks1

    ChirpyChicks1 Songster

    Jul 22, 2013
    Glad to hear they are well :) I have food and water inside the coop and water outside in the run, I don't wake up early and since they have a large coop I know they are perfectly okay spending some of the morning inside the coop. On rainy days I tend to keep them in the coop all the time b/c I don't want rain coming into the coop floor.
  7. Aina

    Aina Chirping

    Jun 3, 2015
    Oahu hawaii
    HI my hen Chica has been attacked by a dog last Thursday. Brought her to the vet Saturday and since she sleeps and does not want to eat. I give her water and she just get a few drops at the time. Added electrolytes today and gave tiny bit of baby formula. The vet gave her meloxicam for a week. She said she get beat up while escaping the dog and has a bruise on her chest. How long would she last without food? Should I leave her alone or keep forcing her a bit? She seems interested by food but barely opens her beak and does grab anything then close her eye and sleeps. She is about 5 years... Thank you!
  8. KFC Chickens

    KFC Chickens Hatching

    Mar 17, 2018
    Well I by accident lost one chicken while cleaning their coop. I was devastated even my neighbors helped in the search. 8 days went by and then one day I was doing my laundry which is located in my garage. I notice a cardboard box upside down, recently unpacking from a move, and then saw some chicken poop next to it. I lifted up the box there lay my hen sitting on three eggs. For a entire week without food or water. She was fine. I then returned her to the coop she didnt eat right away but definitely drank alot of wTer. I was amazed she made it so long. I guess when going in and our ofbthe garage that day she snuck in bumped the box and it fell upside down on top her. She never made a peep. I even remember checking the garage too.
  9. 21hens-incharge

    21hens-incharge Crossing the Road Premium Member

    Mar 9, 2014
    Northern Colorado
    An amazing survival story.


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