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While most people don’t think of ducks as a pet that one would have around the house, there are plenty of people out there who will be more than happy to house ducks inside their house. At least, raise the ducklings until they become ducks that can live in the yard and explore the neighborhood at their own leisure.
Keeping ducks as pets is a unique hobby, but it is one that is a bit more resource intensive and time-consuming than caring for other pets. Many people equate caring for ducks as pets to caring for chickens as pets, with some people even making use of chicken coops for housing ducks and keeping them warm.
One thing that you will notice when caring for ducks is that they have a tendency to get their bedding wet. After all, ducks enjoy hanging around the water, so it makes sense that they would track water into the areas where they want to sleep at night, and if the area where the ducks’ bedding sits is exposed to the open, then that’s all the more risk for the bedding to become wet.
Having wet bedding is more than just uncomfortable for your little ducklings. Cold, damp bedding can lead to some illnesses, lead to flies, and will generally be uncomfortable for them, giving you all the more reason to try and work with them to keep the bedding as dry as possible.
First things first, you have to figure out why the bedding is getting wet.
Figuring Out the Cause
Ducks, while not being known for being clean, are not such slobs that they would want to soil the places where they enjoy sleeping.
Chances are that the reason why your duck’s bedding is wet is because one or more of your ducks is tracking water into its bedding, or spilling the water bowl into their beds, or another similar reason.
If the bedding is getting wet because of an opening in the house or hutch where you are keeping them, then this is a straightforward problem that you will want to address.
Most solutions to covering the bedding from rain and other forms of precipitation are as simple as placing a cover over the exposed area of their bedding and potentially putting up some walls if there is not enough cover to keep the rain out.
The real problem begins when you are trying to figure out which duck is bringing in the water and where the water is coming from. One route that you could take to check up on your ducks is that you can watch them for the better part of the day, or check on them if you hear them making any noises inside their home to see what they are doing.
Chances are that you will catch these mischievous birds being up to nothing good.
Most often, ducks bring water into their beds because they need to be able to dip their entire heads into water to be able to clean themselves. Ducks, being somewhat messy and clumsy birds, will have a tendency to then track that water into their bedding area where they will get their bedding soaked.
In some cases, the ducks (especially ducklings) will want to play with their water and will either try to bring the whole bowl over to their bedding location or they will tip the whole thing over, resulting in soaked beds for everyone inside the area.
Preventing the Bedding From Getting Wet
Naturally, you are going to want to try and prevent your ducks from dragging the water bowl around and spilling it every time you set it back into place.
One thing to keep in mind is if the ducks seem consistently unpleased with the location of the water, you may want to try moving it to a completely different but accessible location to see if that is the problem with the ducks.
One way to prevent ducks from tipping their water over is to find a way to fix the bowl to another surface. It could be that you are using a similar setup to a chicken’s water system, where there is enough space for them to drink with a larger pool of water for them to bathe in far enough away that they will only track minimal water back inside.
This isn’t always the optimal solution, as this may not be comfortable for your ducks. Ducks need, at minimum, enough water for them to submerge their entire heads in, although enough water to swim in would be preferable.
You could also consider setting up some absorbent mats around the bedding area so that any water that they track in on their feet and feathers has a chance of being absorbed by something that isn’t where they sleep and nest in.
This won’t fix the problem of thoroughly soaked bedding, but it will help to minimize just how much water gets a chance to get inside the bedding.
Another option you can consider is using water bowls that are heavy or large enough that the ducks physically cannot tip them over. If your problem is ducklings being a little bit too curious about the world and trying to tip the water over, this problem becomes even easier as ducklings don’t have a lot of strength.
A heavy, large water bowl that is still large enough for ducks to be content with is a perfect solution for ducks that enjoy tipping their water over, or moving it around their enclosure to the point where it spills on the bed.
In some cases, you can consider gluing, drilling, or nailing a water bowl down, but this should only be a last resort as it can cause other problems for your ducks.
Finally, the easiest solution is to simply move the water bowl inside the duck’s home to another end, far enough that you would be able to hear the ducks trying to move or tip it over.
While this won’t necessarily prevent your ducks from messing with their water and you having to replace it every so often, it will mean that when the ducks decide to play around with their water, it may not affect the beds where they sleep.