Sweet PDZ

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Calima, Jan 15, 2015.

  1. Calima

    Calima Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I live in the city and don't want my neighbors to complain about smelling my chickens. Does Sweet PDZ really work? Can I use it in the chicken coop and in the run area? How do I use it, do I mix it with sand or pine shavings? How often does it need to be changed/replaced?
     
  2. mrwoodboat

    mrwoodboat Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I use it in all my pens- it works great!! Since I put straw down in my pens, I just broadcast the PDZ first, then spread straw out- I have about 45 birds and go through about 1 bag a year.
     
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  3. Monguire

    Monguire Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sweet PDZ is fantastic. Make sure to get the granulated (looks like kitty litter) versus the powdered (have NEVER seen this available but some on these forums have and it is atrocious dust-wise) and I'd still wear a mask when scooping as it kicks up a lot of dust. It's also expensive...depending on your coop/run size, it could be cost prohibitive. If your run is covered, coarse sand might be a cheaper alternative and almost as good as the PDZ for drying out the poop (hence keeping odor to a minimum).

    My coop is 8x12 (part of a 12x20 shed) and I have two inches of sand on the floor. About 3 feet up I have two U-shaped poop-boards (one on each side of coop) that contain an inch of Sweet PDZ. Three inches above the Sweet PDZ are my 2x4 roosts also in a U-shape. Every day or two we scoop the poop-boards like kitty litter and also pick up any huge offending turdlings from the sand floor. What we don't get off the sand, dries up and breaks down with the pitter-patter of little chicken feet. There is NO smell in our coop. Just dust...a WHOLE LOT of dust.

    The run is 12x16 and covered with smoke-colored polycarb maintaining a bright and dry environment. The run is 70% coarse sand, 30% dirt (well, that hard nasty red clay that passes for dirt in Virginia anyway). The poop in the run desiccates quickly and breaks down into the mix with no smell. I occasionally rake the surface just to help the process along.

    Pros:
    • Low-maintenance. Sand/PDZ is easier than pine shavings as there is no mucking out the coop and replacing with fresh bedding. More PDZ is added to poop boards only as needed to replace that which is scooped away. Sand is never replaced. If it get to a point where I even start noticing any kind of odor coming from floor, i'll just sprinkle some PDZ onto the sand to let the chooks work into the mix. If that isn't enough, will consider replacement of sand but i don't anticipate having to do that more often than every 5-10 years or so.
    • Good for the chooks. Sand/PDZ provide natural exfoliation for their feet, no moisture to be trapped in traditional bedding (shavings), source of grit (the pebbles in coarse sand and even the PDZ to a much lesser extent)

    Cons:
    • VERY dusty environment...both inside coop and in the run. I'm actually considering sprinkling water occasionally just to keep dust down. Should ALWAYS wear a mask when scooping poop or raking as it REALLY stirs things up. All that particulate cannot be good for our lungs.
    • Not as "cozy" as an environment with proper bedding (shavings). The shavings would provide some warmth I'd think if the chooks were ever so inclined to lay down. The sand just seems very "sterile" and unwelcoming.
     
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  4. Calima

    Calima Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks Monguire! That was very informative and quite helpful!
    I haven't build the coop yet as I pick up my 4 baby chicks 2moro. We only have our brooder for now. But I'm trying to obtain as much information as possible in preparation for starting the coop and run building process next weekend.
     
  5. Cacique500

    Cacique500 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    We use only Sweet PDZ ...in the entire coop and the covered portion of our run. The last run section that isn't covered is sand...and I hate that section. The sand gets wet and it's just a PITA to get it clean.

    The PDZ covered areas are super easy to keep clean (I use a large stir fry thingy i found on amazon) and I can clean the entire coop and run in about 10 minutes once a week (5 hens). NO smell at all. Every other week I'll sprinkle a little more PDX around the coop and run just to refreshen and replace it. If the girls would stop digging to china I'd be able to keep more of it INSIDE the run!

    The PDZ also dessicates the poop and I think this helps keep the flies down in summer.
     
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2015
  6. Calima

    Calima Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks Cacique500! Do you have problems with the chicks ingesting the PDZ? and where did you get such large amount of it? How much does it cost?
     
  7. mrosspitt

    mrosspitt Out Of The Brooder

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    Zeolites are linked to mesothelioma and potentially linked to Alzheimer's(you can find this online through reputable sources)
    Is sweet PDZ safe? Yes, for sure when you don't breathe in the dust. Yes, for animals that don't eat it.

    Are you sure about chickens? They ingest it and you eat their eggs. It's not the same as a horse stall.
    Maybe it is safe enough. Maybe it's safe short term.

    You can't just say it's safe because you've used it for a month or 6 months, etc. I like to see some scientific evidence and not just a company or a person off the street.
     
  8. keekerschickens

    keekerschickens Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 22, 2015
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    This is all so helpful! Glad you asked this question I was wondering too
     
  9. Calima

    Calima Chillin' With My Peeps

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    What kind of sand do you mix with PDZ for the coop area and do you also put it in the run area?
     
  10. Talonstorm

    Talonstorm Out Of The Brooder

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    My coop is a mix of the kind of sand you use for concrete (from Home Depot) and PDZ. In the poop tray (under the roost) I use straight PDZ. My run is dirt. Although it doesn't rain much here, I will probably switch the run to sand soon because when it does rain, it has puddles everywhere from the dust bath holes the girls have dug. There is very little odor from my run or coop, which is awesome! I was worried about odor when I first got chickens, but so far (a year now), everything is great.
     

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