Too hot to wait

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by ChickKeeperSky, Jun 19, 2017.

  1. ChickKeeperSky

    ChickKeeperSky Just Hatched

    4
    1
    12
    May 8, 2017
    It is super hot today, 103 right now. We have five chickens, and two were raised by our broody hen. They won't let us touch them. It is their first summer hot enough to give our animals ice water, but they won't touch it. How do I get them to drink? Too hot to wait!
     
  2. Welshies

    Welshies Chillin' With My Peeps

    867
    74
    116
    May 8, 2016
    Alberta, Canada
    They know what is good for them. Are they panting? If they are not panting, they should be fine. Adequate ventilation and shade should be okay, and if they need the ice water they will eventually adjust to it.
     
  3. Fire Ant Farm

    Fire Ant Farm Get off my lawn Premium Member

    6,141
    2,358
    336
    May 5, 2015
    South Texas
    Cool water is better than cold water, generally (maybe that's why they aren't drinking it). When it's really hot, I add ice just to keep their water form getting hot, though...

    They might be fine - watch their behavior more than the thermometer - give them lots of shade and fresh cool water, and let them find their comfort zones. I generally don't mess with them or handle them if I don't have to when it's really hot - minimize stress.

    If you are worried about them and they seem very uncomfortable, fill a pan with cool (not cold) water and hold them with their feet and legs in it. In my experience, some love it immediately, others struggle a bit, but almost always they stop panting in about a minute or two. Don't use cold water because it'll cause the blood vessels to constrict. You want the blood flow to the legs to circulate, cooling the body.

    If you think you have a chicken with heat stroke (acting uncoordinated, not standing up, etc.), dunk their whole body (not head) in a bucket of cool (NOT COLD) water to save them.

    Where do you live? Where I am the humidity tends to be low when it's very hot, so misters work well for me.
     
    barred2rock likes this.
  4. Fire Ant Farm

    Fire Ant Farm Get off my lawn Premium Member

    6,141
    2,358
    336
    May 5, 2015
    South Texas
    Oh, forgot to ask - what breed(s)? Some do better than others. Mediterranean types (small bodied egg layers) do a lot better in the heat, in my experience - more surface area to cool off. My cream legbars almost never pant - even though my Naked Necks (which have fewer feathers) sometimes do - the NNs are bigger, meatier birds.
     
  5. ChickKeeperSky

    ChickKeeperSky Just Hatched

    4
    1
    12
    May 8, 2017
    Thanks for all the advice! They started drinking later when I went back out, so maybe they just didn't like us near.
     
    Fire Ant Farm likes this.
  6. NewChickmom2016

    NewChickmom2016 Chillin' With My Peeps

    144
    29
    86
    May 25, 2016
    To get mine to drink more water I sprinkled some black oiled sunflower seeds and or some dried mealworms in the water pan. They dove in for the treats and got water. Went back after that for more water.
     
    Fire Ant Farm likes this.
  7. drumstick diva

    drumstick diva Still crazy after all these years. Premium Member

    81,157
    8,310
    766
    Aug 26, 2009
    Out to pasture
    Watermelon is usually a favorite hot day treat and they get some water from it as well. Dampening the dirt near them will give them cooler spots to lay or dust bathe.
     
  8. drumstick diva

    drumstick diva Still crazy after all these years. Premium Member

    81,157
    8,310
    766
    Aug 26, 2009
    Out to pasture
    Some folks use water misters to cool off the air near the birds. Also provide as much shade as possible - natural or artificial.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by