My Purrfect Pets Series focuses on different bloggers and their families – including their furry family of course! We all have different lives and I find it amazing to get a glimpse into other peoples homes and connect with them on all levels so I put them under the grill and ask them some questions. As a pet lover myself, I’m always keen to investigate how other people are doing it. This is a pet-positive series that any families with a pet of any kind can take part in, send me an email if you’re interested in being the next featured purrfect family!
Can you tell us a little about the animals you have and your family?
My name is Victoria and I live with my husband Ben and our two children Bella age 5 and Reuben age 2. We have four chickens in our garden! We named one each and they’re called Erica, Nuggets, Chick-Chick and Butterfly. We also have a few minnow fish in a small tank, but I think hubby can’t wait to get rid of those now, so we’ll only have those as long as they last!
What made you decide to get chickens?
We’d been thinking of getting chickens ever since we moved into our home with a garden. Before this we never had our own garden so it was never an option. I wanted to grow fruit and veg when we moved three years ago to our new home and it got us talking about what else we could use the space for. We have a 90ft garden, so there’s quite a lot of space. One of us mentioned chickens ad it stuck. We set up our coop and bought our chickens in April this year.
Do you think your children will benefit from growing up in a household with chickens?
Absolutely. I love teaching them where their food comes from and I don’t want them to be ignorant to how food is created. I’ve always been wary of animals as I never grew up around pets, so I hope my children will be a little more comfortable around animals than I ever was. It’s so rewarding being able to collect the eggs each day and create meals with them. It’s also about teaching them to care for others and look after them.
How much extra work do you think is involved every day taking care of your chickens?
Luckily my husband has taken on the role of chicken keeper! Every day when he gets back from work he spends around ten minutes topping up their water and food if it needs it. He’ll also scoop out any poo from their nesting box and top up the sawdust. Each weekend he’ll change all of the bedding in the nesting box and top up their mud bath. Day to day it really doesn’t take much to look after them.
What would you say is the most challenging thing about having chickens?
Keeping them in their run! You can see our first design here on my husband’s blog: Chicken Coop and Run. It looked really lovely with the small fence, but they could jump over it! We had no idea they’d jump this high with their wings clipped. So now we’ve had to build some temporary posts and netting that’s high up the whole way round to stop them escaping. We originally thought we’d have them in the garden, but they poo everywhere! We’ve given them quite a large section of the garden and plan to build a big walk in coop/run next year which will look a lot nicer and give them plenty of freedom.
What would you say is the best thing about having your chickens?
Having fresh eggs daily! After a couple of years we’ll have made our money back in eggs. It’s so nice being able to eat fresh food from the garden and know exactly where it’s come from and what we’ve fed them. No antibiotics, growth hormones or nasties in our eggs.
Do you have any advice for anyone who is thinking about adding chickens to their family?
Go for it! We thought about it for over two years before doing it, but it’s really quite easy to do. I wish we’d done it a lot sooner. There is so much advice out there nowadays it’s quick to find any answer to chicken keeping questions.