Don’t You Take Your Chickens On VACATION?

“Ok, lets load ’em up.  Honda And Swiffer….You know the routine.   Help Rosie along and make sure that she doesn’t get the spot beside Stanley.002  OK….everyone , stop fighting over the window seat.  Everyone strapped in?   Okay……lets head NORTH!”

The chickens are coming up to the cottage with us for the first time this season.  For Rosie, it will be a brand new experience because she wasn’t a member of City Boy Hens last summer.  Maybe it’s a brand new experience for the veterans as well.  I’m not sure what level of memory retention can be had when you only have a brain the size of a cashew nut.

So into the van we all went.  Wife, son, son’s friend, daughter, dog, 3 chickens and myself.027

The upside to bringing the chickens to the cottage is that I’ll have something to write about for  the blog and we will continue to enjoy farm fresh eggs at the cottage.  The down side is that 5 people and one dog, crammed into tight quarters with 3 chickens who are known for frequent defecation, may not be the best recipe for a pleasant 3 hour  drive on a humid evening.  It’s not too bad for my wife and myself because the chickens will be positioned behind our seats and our windows will be WIDE OPEN.  For the kids…it’s another matter.

Those rear windows in a mini van are not designed to roll down.  All that you can get in terms of ventilation is a slightly cracked window that only opens up an inch from the side.  I’m sure it’s a safety feature, but the person who designed this van was definitely not thinking of the possibility that MAYBE someone some day might want to transport a few chickens to the cottage in this vehicle!

In order to help with the poop volume, I tried something different this year.  I intentionally withheld feed for 3 hours prior to  our cottage departure.  I read in a post by a chicken vet that it takes 3 hours for food to move from beak to butt in a chicken.  My girls must be Olympic gold medal contenders because, when we  stopped halfway through our journey for refreshments, I was met with numerous demands from the “rear passengers”  to pick out the chicken turds in the bottom of the cage.  Okay…we’re not talking a dozen or so…..just 3-4 turds.   Boy…those city kids!

Are We Almost There?

Are We Almost There?

Are We.......Almost....There.....zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

Are We…….Almost….There…..zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

Anyways, transportation was successful and the chickens hunkered down in their cottage ark for the night.004

The following morning, I was up bright and early to let the girls out of the Ark into their pen.  There was no way I was letting anyone out for some free ranging until there were 3 eggs in the nest box.  If you’ve followed me before, you may remember  that Swiffer has taken  to sometimes laying her eggs in the backyard.   Here at the cottage, there is almost an acre of land for the chickens to roam and there’s no way that I’m looking over the entire property for an egg!  But, much to my surprise, nestled tightly together,  were 3 warm eggs in the nest box.044  The chickens just looked at me as if to say “Well…..what else did you expect?”. I’m not sure, but I think I heard someone say “Ok… can we finally get out and head down to the beach and explore????????????”072




47 thoughts on “Don’t You Take Your Chickens On VACATION?

  1. Oh man, those are some lucky chickens! And your kids are gonna have some GREAT stories to tell their kids…”Yeah, you think you’ve got it bad? Grammy and Pappy made us ride in the back of a car with CHICKENS.” 🙂

  2. I’ve had to transport chicken from my daughter’s farm an hour and a half away a couple of times. It gets a bit stinky for sure. Never try it with ducks! That was just plain gross.

    • HI Maureen,
      If your ever in that situation again, try withholding feed for 3 hours before departure. It really does make a difference.
      Thanks for your comments.

  3. I love that you take your chickens with you on vacation! I knew someone else that did the same thing. We have 13 chickens and 5 guineas, a tad too many to take on vacation I think! Thanks for sharing on the Home Acre Hop!

  4. You are too funny Rick. We use to take the guinea pig (Canada) in one cage, the babies (10) in another cage, and Jeremy (Pops) in another cage all to the cottage in a car with 3 kids and a dog. Only problem was the kids got out at the cottage while crazing and we then had to hunt them all done in the hedge.

    • Hi Nancy,
      I did build my own crate. I am less worried about predators up North. There are more raccoons in the city than there are per square mile up at the cottage. I just have to be mindful of the neighbor’s dog because we do not have a fenced in yard at the cottage.
      Thanks for your comments.
      Hope you’ll stop by again.

  5. I’m crazy about my chickens, but I’ll admit to never thinking about taking them on vacation! But if there was a place for them waiting as dandy as that coop, I might just consider it! Well done! I’m sure those eggs tasted quite good!

  6. Hooray for you! I would if I could. But I have 14 in my flock!!! I hate to leave them, because no on takes care of them like I do! Lovely ladies there!!

  7. Lol, I love your post! I’ve never thought about taking our girls on vacation but it would be interesting! That’s great that the travel didn’t affect them and you were able to still get eggs the next day. 🙂

    Thank you for linking with the Homeacre Hop! Hope you’ll join us next week!

  8. Loved the story! I followed over here from the Homeacre Hop, too. I was thinking I’d have to take a trailer, if I were to take my girls on vacation, since there are 23. Looking forward to reading more about your adventures.

  9. They really are lucky chickens, most never get to even see the light of day, and these guys are hitting the road, to cool.

    Thanks for sharing on Tuesdays With a Twist.

  10. Too funny! Been browsing your blog, I love it! Came over from “Homestead Barn Hop”, glad I did. This story reminds me of the time we went on vacation with our two children, a dog, and a Green Wing Macaw in his cage tipped on it’s side in the back of our 63 Chevy Station wagon and we were pulling our 1951 mahogany Chris Craft 18′ runabout – got a lot of unusual looks on that two hour trip, haha! Our camp now is right on a lake but it’s in an association that I’m sure wouldn’t want my seven hens and huge rooster running around. We do bring friends fresh eggs when we go though and give them to friends there. Now to go read about your sausage making tips…

  11. Hello from the hills of Arkansas. Saw your bee post & am wanting to start a bee hive naturally. Always trying to find info. Love your chickens. I have several chickens & guineas. There isn’t anything as rewarding, aggravating & heartbreaking as growing poultry, in my opinion.Good luck with your bees.

  12. How fun of you! My hubs would put his foot down if I tried to stow 8 hens in the car for vacation. My Scotty Ladybug is lucky to get to go with us, if I can pry hubs home body away for a weekend. This year he has been building a pole barn for a wood shop and there has been no vacation with him. Had to take one with a friend this past spring. Great post!

  13. Hello, I just ran across your blog , your chicken vacation story was great ! I don’t have chickens right now . I hope to get a coop built soon, I grew up on a chicken farm in Arkansas, we had 25 thousand chickens , I am just wanting a few laying hens, for eggs and enjoyment. I`m going to put your blog on my favorites list. Thank you !

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