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Top 5 Best Chicken Cages (2022 Buyer’s Guide)

There’s nothing more rewarding than raising chickens but to ensure their safety and happiness, they need a coop that offers protection from predators, space, and shelter.

Having reared chickens for more than a decade, I’ve bought and built many coops and cages and I am here to help you choose the right type of housing from wooden coops to metal pens.

Let’s start by looking at the best chicken cages from the dimensions and material to the protection it offers for your feathered friends.

  • Sturdy
  • Weather resistant
  • Easy to maintain
  • Spacious
  • Easy to assemble
  • Affordable
Best Value
  • Durable
  • Spacious
  • Easy to clean
Editor’s Choice
  • Simple to clean
  • Mobile coop
  • Attractive design
Best Design
  • Small size
  • Outdoor coop
  • Weatherproof
Best Compact Hen House

Top 5 Best Chicken Cages

Before we head on to the the full reviews, here’s a quick look at all the best chicken cages in different categories…

Snaplock Formex Large Chicken Coop

Top Pick

This quaint hen house offers four nest boxes of 10×11 inches each, providing ample space for four laying hens and poultry such as ducks.

Top Pick

The Snaplock coop does not require tools to put together as each part is designed to snap and lock in place making it easy to assemble.

It comes with three 36-inch perches for roosting with enough room for 3-4 average-sized hens weighing around 5 lbs each.

Best Value

BestPet Large Metal Chicken Coop Run

Designed as an outdoor exercise pen or cage for small animals, the BestPet Metal Coop and Run has an epoxy coating to prevent corrosion.

BestPet Large Metal Chicken Coop Run

The metal frame of this cage is easy to set up and can be used as a run for poultry and other small animals including rabbits in the backyard.

The high-strength wiring is easily secured into the ground to prevent it from toppling over in strong wind.

Editor’s Choice

OverEZ Large Chicken Coop

Built for sturdiness, the natural wood coop includes a non-toxic and moisture-resistant coat of paint to prevent water damage.

OverEZ Large Chicken Coop

The OverEZ Coop is a quality hen-house that is big enough to accommodate up to 15 chickens of 4-5 lbs each.

It is well-ventilated owing to the two screen windows that you can open for fresh air which prevents the buildup of moisture and dampness.

Best Design

Best Choice Mobile Chicken Coop Tractor

The poultry coop and cage in one comes with two wheels making it easier to move around while keeping hens safely enclosed. 

Best Choice Mobile Chicken Coop Tractor

The Best Choice Mobile Coop is constructed from sturdy natural fir wood and steel mesh to improve its durability when used outdoors.

It comes with predator proof latches to prevent pesky raccoons from reaching fowl.

Petsfit Weatherproof Outdoor Chicken Coop

Best Compact Hen House

Dense fir wood slats, stainless steel hardware, and eco-friendly paint provide sturdy construction and finishes that are weatherproof and durable.

Best Compact Hen House

The Petsfit Outdoor Coop is designed with three doors for easy access helping you to reach every corner for thorough cleaning and hygiene.

The dense wood panels along with secure locks keep birds in and small predators such as rodents and cats out.

Best Chicken Cages Reviews

Top Pick

Snaplock Formex Large Chicken Coop

The Snaplock Formex Coop is ideal for backyard chicken keepers who are looking for a maintenance-free and sturdy coop to house their hens. The coop requires insulation against freezing temperatures but offers a waterproof interior with space for bantam and large hens.

Snaplock Formex Large Chicken Coop

Snaplock Formex uses an interlocking design allowing you to build the entire coop, including the roof, without the need for tools. It takes an average of 30 minutes to put the entire structure together.

Capacity

If you are looking to house 4-5 hens the size of Rhode Island Reds (RIRs) or Barred Rocks, then this coop is a good choice. It comes with two nest boxes and three perches to accommodate large hens or six bantam hens.

Features

Collecting eggs is also made easy as the hinged lid covering the nest boxes can be unlocked using the secure latch. The coop doesn’t include a litter tray; however, the multiple openings make for hassle-free cleaning. You won’t have to worry about maintenance either as the tough plastic material is easy to clean by wiping the surface with a soft cloth.

The large coop by Snaplock Formex is made from a thick yet lightweight plastic that is waterproof and meant for outdoor use. It makes our list as the top-rated coop because it is durable, simple to assemble, low-maintenance, and fairly priced.

Specs

  • 6 lbs
  • Plastic
  • 17x43x26 inches

Pros

  • Sturdy
  • Easy to clean
  • Secure latches at access points

Cons

  • Single vent
  • Not predator resistant
  • Not suitable for below-freezing temperatures

Best Value

BestPet Large Metal Coop and Run

The BestPet Metal Cage is our top budget pick because it is durable, spacious, and simple to install. It makes for a secure run for urban poultry keepers and is easily attached to existing coops or hen houses.

BestPet Large Metal Coop and Run

An important part of raising chickens is providing them with a secure area for exercise and foraging. The BestPet Large Metal Coop offers the security fowl need in a spacious pen. It is a metal cage that is big enough for four hens the size of RIRs with dimensions of 88x40x40 inches.

Waterproof Roof

The cage comes with a waterproof roof to protect birds against rain; however, most keepers extend this tarp for added coverage against the wind, rain, sun, and snowfall. The tarp consists of UV-resistant material to prevent cracking and warping with exposure to the elements over time.

To protect the metal cage against corrosion such as rust, it is covered by an epoxy coating  making these cages durable and long-lasting. The low carbon steel wire is strong and predator proof against cats, dogs, foxes, and coyotes.

Capacity

The metal playpen is the best chicken enclosure for medium to large-sized birds of more than 4 lbs that cannot squeeze through the bars to escape.

The BestPet Metal Cage is easy to set up and spacious providing your feathered friends with a secure enclosure to forage during the day.

Editor’s Choice

OverEZ Large Chicken Coop

The OverEZ Coop is a sizeable structure that is ideal for up to 15 hens of around 5-7 lbs in size. It includes a hinged lid over the nest box making it easier to collect eggs.

OverEZ Large Chicken Coop

For a secure coop that is large enough to house 10-15 hens, the OverEZ coop is one of the best hen houses on the market. It is a good choice if you’re looking for a secure coop that is designed with high-quality wood and you want to protect your birds against the weather and possible predators.

Build

The 74-inch coop is built for durability as it is constructed from dense fir wood. The natural wood and eco-friendly paint make it a safe option to house poultry as it does not expose birds to harmful chemicals. The non-toxic paint is also water-proof preventing moisture from deteriorating and warping the structure.

You won’t have to worry about ventilation with this coop as the two screen windows and two vents near the gable offer adequate airflow throughout the interior. This prevents hygiene issues such as stale air and rising dampness from developing inside the coop.

Features

Along with the durability and the appeal of these coops, it comes with five nest boxes, two roosts, and a wooden ramp making it easier for birds to move in and out of their coop.

Owing to the spacious interior, it is easy to clean and can be set up in about 60 minutes by two people with the use of a screw gun.

Specs

  • 600 lbs
  • Natural wood
  • 74 x 60 x 72.5 inches

Pros

  • Easy to clean
  • Secure design
  • Weather-proof

Cons

  • Heavy structure
  • Requires floor materials
  • Door lacks predator-proofing

Best Design

Best Choice Mobile Chicken Tractor

The Best Choice Mobile Poultry Tractor offers the best design as it is made from natural fir wood that is durable and weather-resistant. It includes a UV filter on top of the hen house to absorb heat and keep interiors cool.

Best Choice Mobile Chicken Tractor

If you are looking for a mobile coop with built-in nest boxes and an area for foraging, the Best Choice Mobile Wood Coop offers a tractor design perfect for two large hens or four bantams. The 70-inch tractor comes with a built-in handle and two wheels so you can move the coop from one spot to another while keeping your birds inside the cage.

Features

A great feature of this coop is the cage for foraging situated below the hen house. The bottom of the coop is secured with a galvanized wire mesh allowing birds to walk about within the confines of the cage. This way, poultry are protected from hawks while foraging and you can move them to different patches of grass to prevent them from destroying the lawn.

There are two nest boxes inside the upper hen house that measure approximately 31 inches in length and 24.5 inches in width. The coop does not include perches for roosting but it does come with a ladder allowing birds to move between the upper and lower levels with ease.

The slide-out litter tray provides ease of maintenance and each of the two doors has a latch to keep small predators such as raccoons and foxes out. To collect eggs with little hassle or fuss, the coop includes a hinged top with a latch above the nest boxes. By lifting the lid, cleaning the nest boxes is quick and simple.

Specs

  • 63.8 lbs
  • Wood and steel wire
  • 70.87 x 25.98 x 39.37 inches

Pros

  • Natural wood
  • Durable steel mesh
  • Easy access to nest boxes

Cons

  • Open floor
  • Very small
  • Difficult to maneuver

Best Compact Hen House

PetsFit Weatherproof Outdoor Chicken Coop

The durable hen house is painted with eco-friendly water-based paint to prevent exposing poultry to toxins. To protect birds from harmful chemicals, the best chicken cages use pet-friendly paint and coatings.

PetsFit Weatherproof Outdoor Chicken Coop

Small backyards need a compact yet secure coop to house poultry and the Petsfit Weatherproof Outdoor Coop is the answer. The coop’s dimensions of 53 inches in length and 25 inches in width make it the ideal choice for smaller yards.

Build

It is an outdoor coop made from durable fir wood along with a waterproof coating and an asphalt roof. These structural features prevent rain and wind from reaching the interior that would otherwise place birds at risk of illness.

It does require insulation in frost-prone regions such as straw bedding to keep birds comfortable in plummeting temperatures. It is also a good idea to add a tarp during heavy snowfall to protect poultry from frost exposure.

Capacity

The coop does not include a run but is a compact hen house that can accommodate five bantams or three to four hens the size of Barred Rocks or RIRs. It includes a side nesting box with a divider for two hens and the top of the nest box is easily opened to retrieve eggs. The roof, however, cannot be opened.

There are three access points making it easier to reach all corners of the coop, especially when removing bedding and scrubbing the floor. As a bonus, the bottom can be removed to clean the interior and prevent the buildup of waste such as fecal matter.

What is a Chicken Cage?

A chicken cage is a structure or enclosure that keeps birds safe and secure from predators and the elements.

NOTE

Also known as a poultry playpen, it consists of metal wire that also works as a run.

Cages provide a covered area that is either attached to a traditional coop or placed over a coop where birds can freely walk about without being exposed to predators such as hawks, foxes, or raccoons.

Chicken Cage vs Chicken Coop

Chickens Outside a Coop
Chickens Outside a Coop

A chicken cage is generally made of metal wire and is designed for ventilation, confinement, and security against ground and aerial predators. It can be used as a run depending on the dimensions and intended use. To be considered a run, it must provide at least 10 square feet per bird.

You may be familiar with a battery cage that is a wire enclosure created to house production hens but these offer little room and are hard on chicken’s feet.

FACT

Wire floors prevent chickens from performing natural scratching and foraging movements causing their nails to overgrow making it hard for them to walk.

Hens that aren’t allowed to free range can end up with broken toes and legs when their feet or claws get stuck in the wiring and try to break free.

A coop is a traditional wood or plastic structure that looks like a small house. It includes a door or hatch, a roof, and panels to create a fully enclosed interior for birds of all breeds and sizes. A run is usually attached to a coop allowing birds to move from the coop into a secure and open area where they can forage and exercise.

What’s the Best Chicken Cage?

Chickens Inside a Cage
Chickens Inside a Cage

The best poultry cages are made from durable steel or aluminum to protect them from rust and degradation when exposed to outdoor conditions. It should also have narrow slots to prevent fowl from poking their head through and getting caught by predators or being able to squeeze in between the bars to escape.

The best cages provide value for money and offer birds spaciousness to keep them healthy, happy, and stress-free. The BestPet Large Metal Cage is a good example of a cost-effective and sturdy playpen for poultry.

Here are a few must-know factors when looking for the best chicken cages..

Things to consider

Price

You want an enclosure that offers value. The price should always be justified by the quality of the material, the size of the cage, and the features provided.

Size

High-quality cages of at least 80 inches in length are ideal for 4-5 hens such as RIRs or Leghorns.

Material

Playpens should consist of galvanized or epoxy-coated steel or aluminum to prevent rust, corrosion, and weak points in the structure.

Durability

Tough materials such as steel and aluminum are weather-proof and durable which means that it will last for 7-10 years if not more.

Features

An important feature of a poultry cage is a tarp or roof cover to provide birds with shelter against wind, rain, and shade from the heat.

Maintenance

Wood coops require regular maintenance to protect the wood from moisture damage. Steel wire and aluminum are virtually maintenance-free and will last for many years. The design of the cage should include a removable litter tray and spaciousness that make it easy to clean.

How Big Should a Chicken Cage Be?

A poultry cage or playpen should provide at least 50 inches or 4 ft of area per bird. This is in addition to providing your birds with time outside of their pen to forage and exercise. A spacious cage prevents birds from becoming stressed and pecking one another while confined.

Can Chickens Stay Caged All Day?

Chickens should not be kept caged all day.

NOTE

Chickens are natural foragers and enjoy spending time free ranging outdoors.

If you are concerned about aerial predators such as hawks, ensure that their run or pen is large enough to give each bird their own areas to hide, relax, and forage.

Birds that are confined to small spaces tend to turn on one another by pecking and feather pulling. Provide at least 10 square feet of outdoor area per bird and they will better tolerate being confined for long periods.

Where is the Best Place for a Chicken Cage?

Playpens for poultry are best placed in semi-shade locations offering some sunlight with the option for birds to move into the shade when the heat gets too intense. It should also be sheltered from rough winds that are disruptive to birds.

Final Thoughts

After reading this review, I hope that you’ve enjoyed our guide on chicken coops and cages and that you know which type of enclosure is best for your flock.

If you’re still unsure as to which enclosure is the right one, let’s recap our top three picks to help you find the value that you are looking for.

  • Sturdy
  • Weather resistant
  • Easy to maintain
  • Spacious
  • Easy to assemble
  • Affordable
Best Value
  • Durable
  • Spacious
  • Easy to clean
Editor’s Choice

Top Pick

The best coop is the Snaplock Formex Large Coop offering a maintenance-free coop that is weather-proof and designed to house at least four laying hens.

Best Value

As our most affordable playpen, the BestPet Metal Cage offers a sturdy steel frame that is easily secured into the ground to protect birds against small predators.

Editor’s Choice

For a high-quality coop designed to house 10-15 medium to large-sized poultry, OverEZ remains a preferred choice of coop. It offers a spacious interior, nest boxes, and a well-ventilated enclosure for poultry.

Spread the Word

We appreciate you taking the time to read our guide on the best types of chicken cages. Fellow chicken keepers who are interested in coops and cages for their flock, please share our article with them so they too can invest in the right poultry enclosure.

As a final tip, consider durability and the security the pen offers against local predators so you have peace of mind that your precious feathered friends are always safe and secure.

If you’re still undecided in buying a chicken cage, building a portable chicken coop might be for you.

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Jess Woods
Jess Woods
Founder of Chickens & You. I love raising chickens and creating a self sustainable homestead for my family. I like to spend my time writing and teaching skills for homesteading and self sufficient living. 🐓 👩‍🌾