How many hens in a dog house coop?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Peruvian, May 20, 2010.

  1. Peruvian

    Peruvian Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 15, 2008
    Vermont
    I am thinking of getting some layers and like the ease and mobility of a dog house coop. Assuming a large dog house, how many hens can it fit for a year round coop with an attached run?
     
  2. teach1rusl

    teach1rusl Love My Chickens

    Depends on the size of the doghouse, whether you're getting LF or bantam hens, and the area where you live (do you get winters - so there's a chance they would be cooped up for days or do you live in a warm weather area where they would ONLY be in there to sleep/lay eggs). Kind of like saying I'm getting a hottub, how many people can I invite over to use it, without knowing how big the hottub is... [​IMG]
     
  3. Peruvian

    Peruvian Chillin' With My Peeps

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    141
    Apr 15, 2008
    Vermont
    I'm assuming RIR and Barred Rocks. As my location states, I'm in VT (read: durn cold winters!)
     
  4. Orchid

    Orchid Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 10, 2010
    North Central MN
    I am a TOTAL newbie so I can only tell you what I've learned here, so far. [​IMG]

    You want a minimum of 4 square feet per full sized chicken inside the coop, or 2 square feet per bantam sized chicken. Your run should have a minimum of 10 square feet per chicken. You also need to figure that you're going to have to have some kind of heated waterer and a feeder inside that coop in the winter months - which of course is when the chickens will be spending the most time in there, too.

    Your coop will need plenty of ventilation and in Vermont, I would think you're going to want to insulate the coop for less temperature variation in the winter. I'm in MN so I understand long brutally cold winters. [​IMG]
     
  5. teach1rusl

    teach1rusl Love My Chickens

    In an area like VT, I would definitely go with 4 sq. ft. per bird. So a 3 x 4 dog house...three of the breeds you mentioned. Keep in mind that a nest box inside will take up living space in the winter time, as you only want them in it for laying eggs. A big 4 x 4 dog house...four birds. If it's a little less than either mentioned, I would go with one less chicken than mentioned. Of course the run would need to be a little more than double the size of the coop housing. If you don't insulate, you can stack hay bales around the sides of the coop to help w/winter insulation...
     

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