Best Farm Shoes To Wear In The Chicken Coop
If you've ever had chicken poop stuck on the bottom of your shoes, you know the value of appropriate farm shoes. A dedicated pair of footgear for chicken coop chores is essential. And with the largest bird flu outbreak ever, keeping the chicken coop a bio-safety zone is vital.
There are plenty of farm boots or shoes on the market, and we'll address the best ones by type and usage.
- Best Farm Shoes in Winter
- Best Farm Shoes in Summer
- Best Farm Shoes for Rain/Mud
- Best Slip-on Farm Shoes
Let's address the best buys and their specifics.
The Best Farm Shoes for the Chicken Coop
Best Farm Shoes in Winter
With so many different types of winter shoes available, it can get overwhelming when looking for the perfect pair of winter boots. Not only do they have to be comfortable and warm, but we also want to wear them inside the chicken coop, so the boots must be easy to clean and comfortable to put on and off.
Let's go over our Top 3 Best Farm Shoes In Winter:
- Bogs Snow Boots
- The North Face Thermoball
- Sorel Out N About Puffy
How we did the test
We've tested several different types of winter shoes and came to our top 3. All are easy to slip on and off and easy to clean. We tested all the boots for several days to do the early morning chores around the house and the chicken coop. Temperatures were around freezing, and the weather was misty and damp.
The boots were tested for maintenance, water resistance, easy-to-clean, and keeping our feet toasty warm.
1. Bogs Snow Boots
The winner of the 'Best Winter Boot' test is the Bogs Amanda Snow Boot. These snow boots are a well-known type of winter boots made of natural rubber and neoprene. The company describes Bogs boots as 'long lasting high-quality boots' that should last a lifetime.
Our purchased boots are Amanda boots, rubber boots with synthetic lining on the inside of the boot to keep your feet warm in harsh winter months. The boots feel warm and are comfortable to walk in. They stayed firmly on our feet the entire time working in and around the chicken coop, but are very easy to put on and off.
Easy to clean? Yes, Bogs boots can be rinsed with a hose and gently scrubbed to remove any stubborn dirt or chicken poop. You don't need to use soap; leave the boots to dry naturally after rinsing. But be careful not to soak the inside, as it takes some time to dry.
Water-resistant? Yes. Bogs boots are made of natural rubber, so they'll keep your feet and legs dry. The Amanda boots we tested are laced boots, but the inside is completely waterproof, as there are no holes where the water can pass through the holes of the laces.
Keeps you warm? Yes. Our feet stayed warm after 1.5 hours of walking around and standing still.
Bonus points? Many Bogs boots have a handle in the boot, so you can easily pick them up. This is a unique system, so you can easily walk around with your boots in your hands or keep them lifted for cleaning.
Why avoid? There aren't many downsides to the Bogs boots, but if we need to pick one, it's the laces. Laced boots are not the easiest ones to put on and off, but if you don't tie them too firmly, you can still put them on and off without having to tie the laces. If you don't want laced boots, Bogs has plenty of unlaced boots in their product range.
|Why is this the #1 Farm Winter boot?|
The Bogs Amanda Snow boot has everything you need from a reliable, comfortable winter boot. They're warm and cozy but still look sturdy and are decent outdoor boots to get some work done in the backyard and inside the chicken coop. No problem if they get dirty; you'll clean them off in a jiffy!
2. The North Face Thermoball
The North Face is a well-known brand of outdoor clothing and shoes. No wonder they made it to our top 3 of best winter shoes. But we stayed far away from the regular hiking boots, or winter boots, as they're not easy to put on and off, nor are they low in maintenance. Instead, we went off the beaten track and got the slip-on Thermoball winter shoes.
Easy to clean? They are relatively easy to clean, but as they are water-repellant and not waterproof, you need to be careful not to rinse them with a hose. The material does not absorb dirt or water, so the shoes can be easily cleaned using a damp cloth.
Water-resistant? No, these shoes are water-repellent, not waterproof or water-resistant. However, we used the shoes for more than an hour in wet grass, and our feet stayed dry. These shoes are not meant for muddy and soaking-wet environments. The soles are rubber, making it easy to clean off chicken poop.
Keeps you warm? Yes, and no. Even after an hour and a half of outside chores, our feet stayed warm. However, they aren't boots, so the shoes don't cover your ankles, leaving some of your legs uncovered even when wearing long trousers or leggings.
Bonus points? The North Face Thermoball can be used both inside and outside the house. So even if you don't want to use them inside the chicken coop, you can use them as indoor slippers or quickly put them on to catch the morning paper through the snow.
Why avoid? They don't look like the sturdiest outdoor shoes, so if you want to use them to visit your chickens but also to do outside chores in winter, there are better options. Plus, they're quite low so they won't cover your ankles.
3. Sorel Out N About Puffy
Sorel boots are another example of high-quality outdoor boots. The type of boot we've tested is the Out 'n About Puffy boot, a waterproof and rainproof snow boot. They look slightly like Moon Boots but are less puffy, making them easier to wear. The boot has 200g of insolation, making it the warmest boot on this list. The soles are washable rubber.
Easy to clean? Yes, the soles are made of rubber, making them easy to rinse off and pretty thick; the heel measures 1.5 inches (4cm). The fabric is made of waterproof nylon upper and PU-coated synthetic overlays, making it easy to wipe off with a damp cloth.
Water-resistant? Yes, the Sorel Out 'n About Puffy is waterproof. They can be used to walk through heavy rain and snow. And because of their height, your lower legs and ankles are protected from heavy weather.
Keeps you warm? Yes. These snow boots are made to endure cold weather, containing 200g of insulation. Our feet stayed toasty warm while outside, although the temperature was around freezing.
Bonus points? The boots are incredibly soft and comfortable to wear, so they can not only be used for visiting the chicken coop but are also suited for a winter walk.
Why avoid? These boots are not the sturdiest, although they are high-quality. But they're not working boots. If you're looking for a boot that will endure many heavy winter chores, you might want to look for something else.
Best farm shoes in summer
Wearing heavy boots during hot summer days can be pretty frustrating, so no wonder most hobby farmers like to wear different shoes during different seasons. Depending on where you live, the need for summer farm shoes will be less or more likely.
We'll address our Top 3 Summer Farm Shoes. If you don't like open-toe shoes or want to see more clogs-type shoes, look at our Best Slip-On Farm Shoes list, where we discuss different types of easy-to-put-on gardening and farmers' shoes.
All shoes on the list are water-resistant, easy to clean, and long-lasting.
Our top 3 best farm shoes in summer:
- Crocs Original
- Havaianas Slide
- Birkenstock Arizona Slippers
How we did the test
We used our top 3 farmers' shoes to do chores in and around the coop for several days. We've walked for at least 1.5 hours in the garden and the chicken coop, wearing the different shoe types.
We've replaced the coop bedding, replaced the waterer with some unavoidable spillage, and strolled through the chicken run. All shoes were tested for lightness, breathability, ease of cleaning, and water resistance.
1. Crocs Original
The winner of our 'Best Summer Farm Shoe' is the most famous brand of clogs: classic Crocs. The variety in colors and types is incredible; you'll find a Croc shoe to your taste and preference. The basic version is made of Croslite, a vegan material looking like rubber or plastic, but it isn't. The brand still uses leather in some designs, but most designs are vegan.
The style of a Croc shoe is very recognizable, making that eighter a pro or a con, depending on whether you like the design.
Easy to clean? Yes, Crocs can be easily hosed down for cleaning and carefully scrubbed to remove any dirt or chicken poop.
Water-resistant? As the shoe itself is made from a rubber-looking material, they are, in fact, waterproof. You can soak the shoe in water and quickly dry them off with a towel or let them dry naturally. But your feet won't stay dry! Crocs shoes aren't closed shoes; during rainy days, it's best not to wear them with socks, as they will get wet.
Light to wear? Yes, Crocs are fairly light-weighted shoes. One size 4.5 woman crocs, as shown in the photo, weighs 4.5 oz (128 gr). This makes them very comfortable and light to wear even in warm summers.
Bonus points? Crocs are such a well-known and major brand you'll have plenty of shoe types and colors to choose from, but the style is easily recognizable. This can be a pro or a con, depending on whether you like their design.
Why avoid? Crocs are not made to fit your feet; they're quite loose. This makes it easy to put them on and off, but it can be a disadvantage when doing heavy chores. Crocs aren't the type of shoes to wear all day, especially when working outside, as you'll prefer firmly fitted shoes for heavier chores.
|Why is this the #1 Farm Summer Boot?|
Crocs are comfortable, light, and easy to wear, especially when running quickly to the chicken coop. They're low in maintenance and fairly cheap, and because there are so many designs to choose from, you'll find something that suits you.
2. Havaianas Slide
One of the most famous brands of slippers is Havaianas. It's a quality brand of beach and bath slippers. For this test, we ordered the Havaianas Slide Bath slippers, which are supposed to be comfortable to wear inside and outside the house due to their wide strap design. The Havaianas Slide can even be worn with socks, unlike flip-flops.
Havaianas Slide slippers are made of PVC (for the straps) and rubber (for the outsole), making them easy to clean. The soles are non-slip and handy in a slippery environment like a chicken coop.
Easy to clean? Yes, as Havaianas Slide slippers are made from PVC and rubber, they can be easily rinsed and dried off with a towel.
Water-resistant? They are made initially as bath slippers, so they are waterproof. But as they are slippers, your feet will get wet when putting them on in the rain.
Light to wear? No, the Havaianas Slide slippers are the heaviest slippers on our list. One slipper size 11 1/2, like the one in the photo, weighs over 10 oz (288gr). They are comfortable, but the weight of the slipper is noticeable when wearing it for a more extended period, especially when walking.
Bonus points? There are many designs to choose from, both for women and men. So, you'll find something that suits your taste. The design looks fashionable and versatile, and the wide straps make them comfortable.
Why avoid? As they are excellent 'quick run to the chicken coop' shoes, they aren't suited as gardening shoes or for doing chores.
3. Birkenstock Arizona Slippers
Another famous footwear brand is Birkenstock. They take great pride in the design of the footbed, included in all Birkenstock models. The Arizona line exists of easy-to-slip-on slippers that can be worn with or without socks. To use inside the chicken coop, we've ordered the Arizona bath slipper, which is washable and waterproof.
The slipper is made from one-piece EVA, an ultra-light synthetic material, with the recognizable Birkenstock footbed for more comfort.
Easy to clean? Yes, as this slipper is made from a synthetic material, it's washable and easy to clean.
Water-resistant? Yes, the Birkenstock Arizona bath slipper is waterproof, meaning you can easily clean it, and it won't get as dirty as regular Birkenstock slippers. But they are slippers, so your feet won't stay dry in them!
Light to wear? Yes. These are the lightest slippers of our test. One size 11 1/2 (45) slipper weighs 4.8 oz (138gr), making them incredibly lightweight and easy to wear.
Bonus points? The slipper is designed with the recognizable Birkenstock footbed, making it very comfortable to wear. The straps are adjustable to make it fit your feet, and the slipper is extremely lightweight.
Why avoid? They are not the best farm shoes to do some work or chores in the backyard, only suitable for a quick run to the chicken coop.
Best Farm Shoes For Rain or Mud
Many gardens, ranches, or homesteads turn into mud pools during fall and winter. A quick visit to the chicken coop can become an annoying task with wet feet or toes.
For rainy and damp environments, we've created a list of farm shoes suitable to wear in the rain or mud. All shoes in this list can be easily cleaned or hosed down, don't collect too much dirt under the soles, and are durable.
Our Top 3 Farm shoes suitable for rain or mud.
- Hunter Original Short Vegan boot
- Dunlop Rain Boot
- Ugg Drizlita Rain Boot
How did we test
We waited until it rained a couple of days in a row to do this test, so the chicken run and the garden were moist and muddy. We tested the boots during heavy rain and went outside to do some chores. We stayed out for at least an hour per rain boot type. Temperatures were around 45 degrees F (7°C).
During that hour, we did some chores in the garden, rearranged the chicken coop, changed the feeders and waterers, and tried to catch the chickens for a short health inspection. When wearing the boots, they were tested for anti-slip, comfort, and warm or cold feet.
All boots on the list are high-quality, waterproof rain boots. Let's find out the pros and cons of our top 3 best farm boots suitable for rain and mud.
1. Hunter Original Short Vegan Boot
The best shoe to wear in muddy and wet environments is the Hunter Original Rain boot. Hunter is one of the big brands of rain and outdoor boots. They're known as sturdy and long-lasting shoes without compromising style. Most Hunter shoes are vegan.
We ordered the 'original' Wellington short vegan boots, a line of attractive natural rubber boots. They look like 'ordinary' rubber boots but with a twist. Let's see what this rain boot is all about.
Easy to clean? Yes, these natural rubber boots are effortless to clean. Just hose them and let them dry naturally.
Water-resistant? Yes. These Hunter rain boots are 100% waterproof. But as they are short boots, they don't cover your legs as long rain boots would. Hunter does, however, have high boots in its product range.
Anti-slip? Yes, the Hunter rain boots soles are ribbed and will ensure you stay on both feet inside the chicken coop. They fit firmly around your feet without being too tight.
Bonus points? All Hunter boots have a nice design; some look retro. If you don't like short boots, Hunter has a wide range of high, short, and/or insulated boots or warm boot socks in various colors to suit any taste and preference.
Why avoid? The boots we ordered lack insulation, making them less suitable for colder weather. But Hunter has plenty of insulated boots available. Secondly, the price is rather high for rain boots, but these boots are made to last a lifetime.
|Why is this the #1 Farm Boot for Rain and Mud?|
The Hunter Original Short Vegan Boot is a sturdy, solid shoe that lasts a lifetime. The material feels comfortable; the rain boots are easy to wear and put on and off. If you don't like this particular design, there are plenty of others to choose from.
2. Dunlop Rain Boot
Dunlop is one of the best-known brands for rain boots, so it couldn't be left off our list. There are plenty of types and varieties to choose from, all in the same known design and shoe sole pattern. We went back to basics and purchased the most simple kind. The Dunlop Dull&Rapido is a PVC and rubber rain boot that looks exactly like what you would expect of a rain boot.
Easy to clean? Yes, all Dunlop rain boots can easily be hosed and scrubbed for heavier dirt. Although the sole pattern is pretty ribbed, the dirt comes off easily by using hot water immediately after using the boots.
Water-resistant? Yes, Dunlop rain boots are waterproof and designed to wear in wet circumstances.
Anti-slip? Yes, because the boot's soles are heavily ribbed, they ensure you stay on both feet in muddy environments.
Bonus points? The price. Dunlop rain boots are not expensive if you're looking for the basic types. You get great value for your money!
Why avoid? The boots we bought were 1/2 size bigger than I usually wear, but still, the boot shaft was too narrow. Check the measurements before you buy. Secondly, they are not warm boots to wear in winter.
3. Ugg Drizlita Rain Boot
Another example of a well-known brand of outdoor boots is Ugg. Although they gained popularity with fancy snow boots, the brand has also expanded its view to rain boots. We've tested the Ugg Drizlita. A waterproof rain boot with an inner sheepskin insole. Ugg products are not vegan as they contain real fur from lambs or sheep. The rain boot has many fun color varieties; we chose a bright yellow!
Easy to clean? Yes, and no, these Ugg rain boots are easy to clean; you can hose them after use. However, the soles have a narrow striped notch, making it more challenging to get all the dirt out.
Water-resistant? Yes, all Ugg rain boots are made from synthetic material, making them suitable for heavy showers and snow. The boots are very short, so your legs won't stay dry.
Anti-slip? We didn't find the boots extremely slippery, but the soles are not as ribbed as the other rain boots on this list. Be careful the first time you try them out.
Bonus points? The insole is lined in a soft sheepskin, making the boot warm in winter but not as warm as their signature snow boots. Because of the fur, walking in these boots is extremely comfortable.
Why avoid? The soles aren't easy to get all dirt and chicken poop out of because of their narrow-lined notch. And because the brand uses sheep skin, the boots aren't vegan.
Best Slip-On Farm Shoes
Going to the chicken coop for a quick visit is so much easier with slip-on shoes. No need to get tangled up in tying your shoelaces before heading out to your birds. All shoes in our list are easy to put on and off and can be worn with or without socks, and therefore are suitable for colder and warmer temperatures.
Garden clogs are our best buy for winter and summer as they are available in both plain rubber and a padded version. They're an absolute favorite among chicken keepers. They're easy to maintain, slip on, and waterproof.
Clogs and mules are available in winter and summer versions, or you can use one type all year round. You can easily hose them down or wash them if they get dirty.
Our Top 3 best slip-on farm shoes:
- Birkenstock Super-Birki Mule
- Sketchers Arch Fit
- Hunter In/Out Insulated Slipper
How we did the test
We tested three slip-on garden shoes we can use inside the chicken coop. They were tested on ease of putting on and off, comfort, staying firmly on your feet, and ease of cleaning.
The shoes were worn in the backyard, doing some garden chores and inside the chicken coop while cleaning the coop, changing the feeder and waterer, and scooping up chicken poop. All shoes were worn for at least an hour, both with and without socks. The weather was damp but dry; temperatures were around 50 degrees F (10°C).
1. Birkenstock Super-Birki Mule
Another famous brand we already discussed is Birkenstock. They take great pride in the design of the footbed, included in all Birkenstock models, even the garden mules. We ordered the Super-Birki mules, an all-around clog made from polyurethane. The clog is not only water-resistant but also dirt-repellant and oil and grease-resistant.
Plus side is that these clogs are machine washable up to 60°C. The footbed is removable and can be machine washed up to 30°C. These types of clogs can be used in various professional and private environments, such as in the garden, but also inside a professional kitchen or a medical setting.
Easy to clean? Yes. The footbed is removable, so you can easily hose the clog with water. Both the clog itself and the footbed are machine washable—the clog at 60°C and the footbed at 30°C.
Fits on feet? It's a clog, so the shoe is loose around the foot. However, they are easy to walk with and will stay on the entire time.
Comfortable? They are comfortable if you are a fan of the typically molded footbed found in all Birkenstock shoes. But not all people are immediately fond of the design, and it may take some time to get used to. The material isn't too hard; it doesn't hurt the feet.
Bonus points? The design is available in multiple colors, ranging from black to red and bright green or yellow. This makes the shoe more trendy and modern.
Why avoid? You will not like this shoe if you don't like the typical garden clog design. People with high feet won't like the feel of the hard material of the clog.
|Why is this the #1 Slip-on Farm Boot?|
The Birkenstock Super-Birki is a comfortable slip-on clog that has many uses. They are machine washable and, therefore, super easy to clean, but simply rinsing them will also do the trick. The clogs fit your feet and are comfortable enough to keep on for an entire day.
2. Sketchers Arch Fit Clog
Sketchers is a well-known shoe brand, featured by their 'ultimate comfort solution' according to the brand. We chose mules from the 'Arch Fit' collection, a shoe type with a supportive cushioning insole system. The cushioning should make walking more comfortable and give more support.
The clog itself looks a bit like Crocs, but they are very different shoes. The main difference is found in the design of the footbed. The footbed will adjust to your feet' shape to reduce shock and increase weight dispersion. The clog is made from EVA, an ultra-light synthetic material, making the shoe vegan.
Easy to clean? Yes. The Sketchers Arch Fit Clogs can be easily rinsed and let dry in the open air, but out of the sun. They are also machine washable, on hand wash. Please don't put them in the dryer.
Fits on feet? They are narrower than the Crocs so in our case a better fit. But for people with wider feet, this can be a downside.
Comfortable? Yes. The clogs are pretty comfortable to wear due to the footbed. Although the shoe was the right size, the heel strap was useless and didn't touch the foot.
Bonus points? The footbed molds into your foot, making it a very comfortable clog. It feels extremely light to wear and seems like you're walking on clouds.
Why avoid? You won't like this design if you don't like the Crocs-type look. However, the Sketchers clog looks very different from the Crocs once you compare the two side-by-side.
3. Hunter In/Out Insulated Slipper
Our second Hunter shoe on our list. Hunter is a major British brand in outdoor and farm boots. The brand sells outdoor shoes, rubber rain boots, snow boots, gardener clogs, and slip-on shoes.
Next to their 'normal' clogs, Hunter has a slip-on insulated slipper. They differ from the usual clogs because they are insulated, softer, and can be used both inside and outside the house. Where the regular clogs are made from natural rubber, the insulated clogs are produced from recycled nylon. This makes the clogs more comfortable than rubber ones, but they are still easy to clean and dry quickly.
Easy to clean? Yes and no. The Hunter In/Out Insulated Slipper can only be cleaned using a damp cloth. It can not be rinsed or put in the washer. However, since the slipper is water-resistant, the dirt easily comes off.
Fits on feet? Yes. The slipper fits around the feet perfectly, and an elasticated channel along the topline is provided to make the shoe a great fit. You can wear them with the heel folded down, as slippers, or with the heel covered, like a shoe.
Comfortable? Yes. The shoe is made from recycled nylon and insulated, so it feels warm, comfortable, and soft the entire time. They do, however, feel more like inside shoes than garden mules.
Bonus points? The inside is lined with fleece, making them feel incredibly soft. The slippers are also lightweight, making them very comfortable to wear.
Why avoid? They look and feel more like indoor shoes, making it weird to wear them outside the house and inside the chicken coop. But the soles are pretty thick, so they are definitely suited for wearing outside and quickly cleaned.
Why wear different shoes inside the chicken coop?
Simply said, to create a bio-safety zone. A chicken coop and run is filled with chicken poop and spilled feed and can be an unclean environment. Not only are your chickens inside the run, but chances are, you'll also get visitors like rats, mice, or wild birds that poop and spill feed. If you don't want to bring feces or mud into the house, you better change shoes every time you go out to the coop.
Next to hygienic reasons, using the same shoes inside the coop and in other places can be dangerous. You can be spreading all kinds of diseases like Avian Influenza or Newcastle Disease to your own or other people's chickens and animals. To ensure biosecurity inside the house and chicken coop, it's best to always switch to 'chicken coop shoes' that are only worn for that particular purpose.