What the heck is a chicken saddle?

Your chicken wears a what, you say? Yup, you read that right, a chicken saddle. So what exactly is a chicken saddle and why do you need it? Well pull up a chair and let me give you the scoop!

Beautiful hens with roughed up, broken, and missing feathers? The chicken saddle or hen apron is the easy DIY answer. #chickensaddle #chickensaddlediy #chickensaddleaprons #chickenapron #chickenfeatherdamage

That does sound like the funniest thing ever right? I know images of a little leather saddle, with an ‘Indian in the cupboard’ size guy riding around on a chicken. Well, that’s at least what I pictured. When I first brought up chicken saddles to my the hubs, he looked at me like I was an alien.

So even though they are not a new thing they are not commonly heard of. The chicken saddle or hen apron are both names used for the same thing. It is a little ‘apron looking’ little piece of material that is used to put on your hens’ backs to protect their feathers.

Let’s be honest who wants their beautiful hens walking around looking roughed up? Yeah, me neither!

Related Reading:

Why every flock needs a Good Rooster

What is a chicken saddle used for?

Feather damage on a hen who needs a chicken saddle

In case you don’t already know my take on roosters, they are useful and in the country necessary. Roosters, well they are males, what can I say, they do the mating thing a lot. They may even have their favorite hens. With all that mating comes damaged back feathers from rooster claws. More favorite hens can get much worse damage. When feathers are damaged the hens are at risk for broken skin, irritation, and infection. Any of which could easily lead to death, especially if other hens start pecking at an open wound.

We have one Silver Speckled Hamburg that almost never lets a rooster catch her, she has perfect feathers. However, I have a White Rock hen who quickly went nearly bareback (I guess maybe she is sexy in the chicken world…). The solution, well that is where the chicken saddle or as some call it the hen apron come in.

You can always buy a few if DIY and sewing is not your thing. However, you can also do fun little chicken saddle DIY! Check out this chicken saddle pattern its an easy  PDF sewing pattern from Etsy, and make them for super cheap. That’s my kind of thing, money-saving, and problem-solving all in one! Heck, that way you can dress your chickens up any ol’ way you want. Me I have kids who want to help pick out some material you will get some Ninja Turtle, Star Wars, and My Little Pony chicken saddles. Not quite the country chic look one might imagine on their beautiful free-range hens, but heck it still works.

DIY chicken saddle pattern

Without too much effort or money a whole bundle of these can sew up quite quickly, an I am not a sewing pro. I made several with no more than a little beginning level sewing knowledge.

Chicken saddle apron

Maybe you are a frugalista like myself, or maybe you prefer to just buy some. But a chicken saddle or hen apron comes in very handy at protecting your beautiful flock from feather damage.Beautiful hens with roughed up, broken, and missing feathers? The chicken saddle or hen apron is the easy DIY answer. #chickensaddle #chickensaddlediy #chickensaddleaprons #chickenapron #chickenfeatherdamage

Do I spoil my chickens? Guilty…maybe I do. They are farmyard royalty. They clean up kitchen scraps and bugs, they help produce fertilizer, they help turn the compost and they keep us in high-quality eggs . So if my girls need a few chicken saddles to keep their feathers beautiful, that’s what they’ll get. But it’s not only for looks only (but I sure do like how they look ) if their exposed backs get wounds or punctured by rooster claws and infection can start or the flock could start pecking at them. So the route of better safe than sorry♡♡♡

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  • Pauline says:

    Thank you Beth, just what we needed!

  • Robin says:

    Love this! Do you leave them on all the time?

    • Beth says:

      Hey Robin,
      I do leave them on all of the time, every so often they will come off or I take them off and clean them, then put them back on!

  • Andrea says:

    Hi Beth. I made my hen one of these aprons. When I put her back in the coop with the others they cackled in fear, the rooster attacked her and everyone took off in different directions including the aproned hen. There was pandemonium in the back yard .. feathers flying. It was hilarious and I needed to regain order which took at least half an hour. They didn’t trust me for the rest of the day.

    • Beth says:

      LOL! Oh goodness, I got a good laugh from reading this! You never know how chickens will react. I never had this reaction, mine sometimes don’t like getting one put on but never full out chaos, as of yet anyway!

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