Should chicken water ever smell like sewage

sheken

In the Brooder
Jul 31, 2021
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It's not a very strong smell. As I walk by the waterer I do no smell it. But once I clean it and dump out the old water I get the distinct smell of, well, sort of like sewage. The water is definitely dirty. You know how chickens love to scratch up and kick up dirt and leaves so that ends up falling into the waterer. But to the extent of sewagy smell?
 

All4Eggz

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It's not a very strong smell. As I walk by the waterer I do no smell it. But once I clean it and dump out the old water I get the distinct smell of, well, sort of like sewage. The water is definitely dirty. You know how chickens love to scratch up and kick up dirt and leaves so that ends up falling into the waterer. But to the extent of sewagy smell?
You should be cleaning the water MUCH more often if it smells like sewage. They need clean water to drink.
They will definitely poop in the water, there is almost no way of stopping that, and yes, kicking up dirt and such into it. But it should NOT smell like sewage.
The next time you clean it out, please post a picture so we can see how dirty it is getting.
 

HeatherKellyB

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Between emptying and filling their water, are you scrubbing the drinker out with soapy water? That's necessary for my bantam hens, until I install a nipple system. The scum will build up and cause more concerns, especially if they're getting the water that dirty each day. A good thing that I like to think about as I walk through checking everything throughout the day is if I would want to drink the water or not. If not, it's time for attention on the drinker ๐Ÿ’œ
 

mamajos

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I have clean water for them always. 5 gallon bucket with horizontal nipples. I just fill as needed. Once in a while I rinse out but itโ€™s always clean inside
5FF73568-FBF6-4F65-AD53-3A36E5A2279E.jpeg
EF5C987A-8944-4F90-B128-37C6829F51CB.png
 

All4Eggz

๐•๐•–๐•ค๐•ฆ๐•ค + โ„‚๐•™๐•š๐•”๐•œ๐•–๐•Ÿ๐•ค = ๐“๐“ต๐“ต ๐“˜ ๐“๐“ฎ๐“ฎ๐“ญ
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sheken

In the Brooder
Jul 31, 2021
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I was looking for validation as to whether water should smell "funky" or as I said, "sewagy". I myself would not drink that crap. I'm not around on a daily basis so I don't clean them out daily. But every time that I do clean them out they smell! They are the "tray" kind, you know the outer ring with a center reservoir per se. I do not use any bleach or soap or such b/c I'm sure that would freak out their owner. I just scrub them down really really good with a rag. It takes some time but I don't mind.

When I asked her how often she's cleaning them she said "almost daily". Hmn...argument brewing. Her logic is that they smell bad because that's what chickens do! I can't win against that. I don't even wanna counter it anymore. Whatever.

But I thought I'd ask some more objective unbiased and unemotionally involved parties. Thanks all!

I was interested in those nipple waterers but she was not. They are not "natural" for a how chickens drink out in the wild. Well, okay.
 

All4Eggz

๐•๐•–๐•ค๐•ฆ๐•ค + โ„‚๐•™๐•š๐•”๐•œ๐•–๐•Ÿ๐•ค = ๐“๐“ต๐“ต ๐“˜ ๐“๐“ฎ๐“ฎ๐“ญ
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I was interested in those nipple waterers but she was not. They are not "natural" for a how chickens drink out in the wild. Well, okay.
:lau

Some people sacrifice comfort and safety for ... naturalness?? lol
If their owner is that stubborn, I don't know what I would do at that point.

It is definitely unsanitary for chicken water to smell like sewage.
 

sheken

In the Brooder
Jul 31, 2021
9
27
36
Thank you @All4Eggz for clarifying. I'm new to this but I also tend to geek out and my OCD kicks in so when I clean those waterers I CLEAN them. Even if there are 5 of them and each one takes me 15'. So be it! I think they need (and deserve) clean water. Plus I am also suspicious that some of the diseases we're dealing with have to do with dirty water. Maybe not. There are other dirty things they could be getting diseases from. Flies. Mosquitoes. Maggots. Wet chicken run. Rainy humid weather. :/
 

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