Little Tikes Playhouse to Coop in NW IN?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by TheBrumstead, Jun 21, 2011.

  1. TheBrumstead

    TheBrumstead Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 9, 2011
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    Ok, I am *still* trying to get my husband to say yes to chickens. We have a 12x7 dog run that came with the house and hasn't been used since we moved here almost 5 years ago. We have a 10x12 shed kit that's been used for other things, but he wants to use the leftover wood for other things (that will never get started, or finished). So... my friend is giving me a Little Tikes Playhouse for free. We already have one for our 2 year old son. I automatically thought chicken coop that wouldn't have to use the shed kit wood (mostly).

    Here is a pic of the actual playhouse:

    [​IMG]

    and the back (from online):

    [​IMG]

    It measures approximately 56"L x 52.5"W x 55.25"H. I only want 4 chickens, 2 Buff Orps and 2 EEs. Now, don't laugh. Husband says 4 is too many [​IMG] , and for now, 4 is reasonable to ease him into it... and in the future, when he loves them and sees the value, we can build a bigger coop [​IMG]

    Now I would plan on putting it on a platform to get it off the ground, give it a floor and give them room underneath. I know the windows need to be covered in hardware cloth and something done with the back window (plexi or plywood for the winter?). What can I do to insulate it for our winters? We frequently get to 0, and negatives with windchill. How well do they hold up in winter? What about a nest box? Milk crate covered in plywood maybe? I'm guessing I can screw a roost in, maybe even put a standing one in and attach it to the floor so it doesn't weigh down the plastic walls?
     
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2011
  2. pawsplus

    pawsplus Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Someone else may have other opinions, but that just looks really hard to predator proof/insulate. How are you going to attach hardware cloth and wood to it?? Bolts? That seems like a ton of work.

    IMO you would be better off scouring Craigslist for a building you can reno if you can't build one yourself or buy a new one. It takes a little patience, but you can find great stuff on C's list! [​IMG]
     
  3. JP101010

    JP101010 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Put this into the search box and it will bring up a great thread with pictures of plastic playhouses converted into chicken coops.

    " Recycling kids playhouse into coop "

    It can be done from what i read..
    Please keep us updated.

    and tell hubby "get on board or this ships leaving without you " [​IMG]
     
  4. Smittenroade

    Smittenroade Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I love seeing playhouse coops. Predator proof? Looks like they live in the city, not many predators there. I would just throw some plastic poultry netting up on the windows and screw a piece of wood for a roost and attach the dog kennel. And walla! You're done!

    Good luck and if you need any help feel free to ask someone!

    Also, keep us updated! [​IMG]

    Edit: Just realized your insulation problem. Could always throw a permanent heat lamp in it.
     
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2011
  5. allieloveschickens

    allieloveschickens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Last edited: Jun 21, 2011
  6. TheBrumstead

    TheBrumstead Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:We have the materials to build a small one, I'm pretty sure I can do it myself, but he wants to use the materials for *something else*. Don't know what, I think it's just a reason to say no. Buying something isn't in the budget. I'm a SAHM with no income except for my Tupperware parties and that's been slow lately. I have enough to buy chickens, a few materials and feed, but not a building.

    Forgot to add - My son's current playhouse was bolted together when we bought it. My husband added a few more and they went in really easy.
     
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2011
  7. ll

    ll Chillin' With My Peeps

    To insulate:

    If there are drainage/air holes like there are in my daughter's playhouse (around the top edges)
    If there aren't any holes, you can make some ...

    You can fill the holes with sand or expanding spray foam insulation (wear gloves and have lots of paper towels handy)

    Chickens don't mind cold so much - they mind drafts aimed at their heads/body.

    I have seen quite a few converted playhouses on this site, in fact one exactly the same style as yours and yes ~ a search using the search box on top will probably bring you to many.
    Good luck!
     
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2011
  8. pawsplus

    pawsplus Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Huh? There are plenty of predators in the city--racoons, opossums, cats, etc.

    And yes, I do think it's necessary to provide an enclosed place--ventilation is one thing; drafts are another thing entirely. Unless the OP lives in Florida, IMO it will be hard to keep chickens healthy in an open coop.
     
  9. TheBrumstead

    TheBrumstead Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 9, 2011
    Hobart, IN
  10. gale65

    gale65 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Quote:It sounds like the OP is using a dog run which could probably be fully enclosed and predator proofed. So if the coop is inside that, it shouldn't have to be as secure.
     

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