How Long Can Chickens Go Without Water?

How long can chickens go without water? It’s a common question by backyard chicken raisers. Knowing the correct quantity of drinking water for chickens is most crucial.

As we all know, everybody on this earth, such as humans, birds, animals, needs water to survive. We cannot live without drinking water.

So, chicken is also one of the beautiful creatures on this earth, and they too need water to survive. So, the question is, how long can a chicken live without water?

In this article we have explained about how long can chickens go without water, why they need it and about watering baby chicks.

How Long Can Chickens Go Without Water?

Chicken can go without water for two days, or you can say 48 hours. When the atmosphere is normal, neither too warm nor too cold, the chicken can easily spend two days without water.

In the very hot temperature, chickens cannot survive without water. The normal body temperature of the chicken is over 104 degrees. 

This may cause a big problem when there is no availability of water for more than one day. If it goes without water for over one day, then the hen may stop laying the eggs for more than one week.

So, it’s better to keep the availability of water and food for your hens. 

How Much Water do Chickens Drink in A Day?

The researchers have proved that indoor chickens can drink 180 to 250 ml of water per day. And the chickens that are keeping in outdoors can drink twice than the indoors.

So, approximately they drink a half-liter of the water per day. Meat chickens are high in growth, so obviously, they need more water than indoors and outdoors because of their high growth.

Meat chickens need up to 1 liter of water per day. In the cold atmosphere, they need less water as compared to warm weather. Remember that you need to give at least half a liter of water to your chicken. 

How Long Can Baby Chicks Go Without Water?

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The baby chicks cannot live without water for over 5-6 hours. It would be best if you were watering them every 5 to 6 hours.

If the baby chicks stay without water for more than 6 hours, this is very harmful to your little chicks.

If you’re not watering them for a specific period, they become dehydrated, and there is more chance of their death because they take a smaller amount of water at a time, so they need water in a short time. 

Everyone needs water to maintain their biological clock, whether they are baby chicks or fully grown chicken. Lack of water makes them dehydrated and makes their biological clock irregular.

They need not only water for drinking only but for cooling the atmosphere as well. If you’re raising your chickens in a warm area, you should keep that area clean and warm.

Give clean and fresh water to your chickens because it makes them healthy and beautiful. As obvious, baby chicks need less water than mature chicks, but regularly. Because they are growing rapidly, so water is the key component in their growth. 

How to Water a Chicken? – Few Quick and Easy Tips

To water your chicken, you need to follow the given below tips-

  • Keep the water clean.
  • Water them using the pipe and automatic drinkers.
  • Maintain all the water suppliers neat and clean.
  • You should keep at least two sources of water.
  • For free-range chickens place the water vessel in a secure place where wild animals can’t attack.
  • Place the water bowl under the shade to maintain its temperature.
  • You can give the Apple Cider Vinegar to your chickens for their healthy body. Remember always use a plastic or rubber drinker for giving ACV.
  • Keep the water vessel to a few inches off from the surface, so chickens don’t make it dirty.
  • Maintain the temperature of the water according to weather.
  • If you have a busy schedule and don’t have time to water your chickens hourly, you can keep automatic waterers. It will be more helpful to you.

Click here to read our complete guide on chicken waterers.

Why Chicken Needs Water Regularly?


As I said above, the chicken needs water regularly for their survival. Water is required for the chickens to keep them energetic and healthy.

Water gives them the energy to fly, lie eggs, walk, run, and other extra activities. Water keeps them hydrated so they can live their life.

Digest the food

Without water, chickens cannot digest their food. The pressing needs water for digestion. When there is a lack of water in the chicken’s body, they cannot get water in their crop, which leads to a big issue. 

Laying eggs

Water is the essential element for laying the eggs out from the chickens. If chickens don’t get enough water, then it leads to dehydration, and because of this, they cannot lay eggs.

Water is also necessary to remove the waste of the body outside. The more water you take, the more your body will be clean.

So, this applies to chickens as well. The more water you give them, the healthiest they will be.

Maintaining Temperature

Water helps to maintain the body temperature regularly. It can keep the body temperature active, healthy, and cool.

If the chickens are raising in a warm area, it is necessary to keep their bodies cool. If they don’t get enough water, then it may cause a major issue for them.

Do Chickens Need Water at Night?

Chickens sleep at night and active at day. Meaning that they don’t wake up at night, so they don’t need water at night. So, make sure to water your chicken before they sleep.

Maintain the waterers in the outside area. But because the chickens don’t need water and food at night, you can keep the chicken feeders indoor, cost-effective, and safe. 

But few breeds like broilers needs water at night because they eat continuously day and night.


So, we are now concluded that large size roosters and hens can easily live without water for about 2 days. While the sensitive baby chicks can only survive for 5-10 hrs if they go without water.

I have given all the possible tips and answers for the question – How Long Can Chickens Go Without Water? If you follow those instructions regularly, then it will be more beneficial for your chickens for their health and growth. 

Bijaya Kumar
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