My Chicks Have Poopy Butts: How to Safely Clean Them

It’s common to come across poopy butts in your chicks. This can be a serious problem if left unattended as it can lead to health issues for your chicks.

Fortunately, there are several ways to safely clean poopy butts without hurting your chicks. In this article, I’ll be sharing some tips and tricks that have worked for me and other chicken owners.

Method 1: Warm Water and a Q-tip

The first method involves using warm water and a Q-tip. This is a simple and safe way to clean your chicks without hurting them. To get started, you’ll need a bowl of warm water and a Q-tip. Dip the Q-tip into the warm water and gently rub it over the poopy area. Repeat this process until the poop is removed. Be gentle and avoid pulling as this can cause injury to your chicks.

Method 2: Glove up and Use Finger and Paper Towel

Another method that has worked for me is to glove up and use my finger and a paper towel. This method is more hands-on and may take a little bit longer than the first method. Wet a paper towel with warm water and gently wipe the poop away. Be careful not to pull too hard as this can cause injury to your chicks.

Method 3: Wet Washcloth and Wipe Gently

For this method, you’ll need a wet washcloth and warm water. Gently wipe the poopy area with the wet washcloth until the poop is removed. Be careful not to pull too hard as this can cause injury to your chicks.

Method 4: Warm Soak in Water

This method involves soaking your chicks in warm water to soften the poop. To get started, fill a container with warm water and gently place your chicks in it. Let them soak for a few minutes, and then gently work the poop off their butts. After removing the poop, gently blow-dry their tushy. You can apply coconut oil or olive oil to their bum to help the poop slide off. Be sure to check the water temperature as too much or not enough heat can cause issues.

Method 5: Warm Stream of Water

Turn your faucet on warm with a small stream of water and put your chicks’ butts in the stream of water. This method may take a couple of minutes, but your chicks tend to like it and it always works eventually. Afterward, take a rag and dry them off best you can before putting them back under the heat lamp. Watch them until they are dry to make sure the others don’t peck at them.

Method 6: Blended/Powdered Oatmeal

Adding blended or powdered oatmeal to your chicks’ feed every day can help prevent poopy butts. This is because oatmeal helps to firm up their poop, making it less likely to stick to their feathers.

Method 7: Vaseline

Applying a small amount of Vaseline to your chicks’ bums can help prevent poop from sticking to their feathers. Be sure to use a Q-tip to apply the Vaseline and avoid getting it near their vent.

Frequently Asked Questions

What causes poopy butts in chickens?
Poopy butts in chickens are usually caused by a buildup of urates around the vent area. This buildup can attract flies, which can lay eggs in the poop and cause an infestation of maggots. The maggots can burrow into the chicken’s skin, causing painful wounds and even leading to death in severe cases.

How do I safely remove poopy butts from my chickens?
To safely remove poopy butts from your chickens, you will need a pair of latex gloves, warm water, mild soap, and a clean towel or paper towels. Gently wipe away any poop around the vent area, being careful not to apply too much pressure. Rinse the area thoroughly with warm water and pat it dry with a clean towel or paper towels. Finally, apply a small amount of coconut oil or petroleum jelly to soothe and protect the skin.

How often should I clean my chicken’s vent area?
You should clean your chicken’s vent area as needed. Check your birds regularly for signs of poop buildup, especially during warm weather when flies are more prevalent.

How can I prevent poopy butts in my chickens?
To prevent poopy butts in chickens, keep the coop clean, provide clean water, feed a balanced diet, check for parasites, and trim feathers around the vent area regularly.

Can poopy butts in chickens lead to health problems?
Yes, poopy butts in chickens can lead to health problems if not handled properly. The buildup of poop can attract flies, leading to maggot infestations and painful wounds. It is important to clean your chicken’s vent area regularly to prevent these issues.


Cleaning poopy butts in chicks is a common occurrence for chicken owners. It’s important to clean their bums as soon as possible to avoid health issues. The methods mentioned in this article are safe and effective ways to clean your chicks without hurting them. Remember to always be gentle and avoid pulling too hard. With these tips and tricks, you can keep your chicks happy and healthy.

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About Jade Polystead

Jade is a homesteader with a passion for raising and caring for animals, specifically chickens, ducks, and goats. She was born and raised in a small town in the midwestern United States, where she learned to appreciate the simple pleasures of rural living.

Jade's interest in animal husbandry began at a young age when her family kept a small flock of chickens in their backyard. She quickly fell in love with the birds and became fascinated by their unique personalities and behaviors. As she grew older, Jade's interest in animal husbandry expanded to include other domesticated animals, such as ducks and goats.

View all posts by Jade Polystead

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