SACRAMENTO (CBS13) – It may seem like a harebrained idea, but one popular pandemic pet seems to be chickens.
The start of the pandemic saw more people buying chickens to raise right in their own backyards and it seems the trend is holding strong. Several pet stores told CBS13 they’ve never seen anything like it.READ MORE: 'He Gives Me Everything To Be': Therapy Dog For Woman In Wheelchair Now Needs Wheelchair Of His Own
“Oh yeah, we’re always selling birds,” said Jess Cota, manager at Western Feed and Supply in Sacramento.
Cota says at one point, they even had to limit three to six chicks per person to keep up with demand.
“I think it was all fear. I think the easiest way, when survival mode kicks in, you figure out how to feed your family,” said Cota. “We have the time, so let’s do it. And of course, there were people that just wanted to focus on their gardens. It just depends man.”
Customer Mariaelena Perez says her sister bought into the craze and is now raising chickens in her backyard.READ MORE: Quake Near Truckee: Why Some Got Shake Alerts And Others Didn't
“So now she’s having chickens every single day and chickens are having chicks,” said Perez. “So I don’t have to buy eggs anymore either because she gives me eggs sometimes. She gives to the whole family. So it’s a win-win.”
Mike O’Connell, the owner of Wild West Feed Pet Supplies, has also been selling more chickens than usual. He said he’s not surprised considering they’re pretty easy to care for.
“As long as you provide food, water and a place for them to nest in, they’ll lay eggs for you. They eat, they lay eggs, that’s what they do,” said O’Connell.
The pandemic is hatching a new kind of pet owner, but there are some guidelines to follow.
“I mean you can go on YouTube and figure anything out, and raising chickens is pretty damn easy,” said Cota.MORE NEWS: Sacramento Police Officer Justin Shepard Arrested For Alleged Domestic Violence Incident
The Centers for Disease Control urges first-time chicken owners to read their health safety guidelines when handling chickens. They’ve been seeing more salmonella cases linked to backyard poultry.