Ducks are cute as you like and can be a great pet if you have the appropriate space and environment to keep them. However, they’re not for everyone and as would expect with any other pet, keeping ducks do come with certain responsibilities.
Maybe you’ve been considering keeping ducks as pets for some time or perhaps you’ve been worn down by your child’s insistent ‘can I have a pet duck?”! Whatever the reason, to help you make an informed decision, here are the pros and cons of keeping ducks as pets.
Pros of Keeping Ducks
Abundance of Eggs
There’s nothing better than fresh eggs for breakfast in the morning, is there?! You’ll also want to don your apron and get baking as you’ll need to make the most of the abundance of eggs if you decide on keeping ducks as pets. Whilst this is down as a pro, if you don’t like eggs, you may have to think of more creative uses for them or you could, of course, sell them to the neighbours to make a little extra income!
When compared with chickens, duck eggs are not only larger, but they will also lay far more over the course of their lifetime. Unlike chickens, ducks remain productive all year round and up to the age of between 6 to 8 years old.
Let’s face it fuzzy little ducklings are adorably cute. Although you might argue that most baby animals are indeed cute, ducklings must be up there with the best, right?! Perfectly sized fuzz balls to fit into the palm of your hand, with those endearing oversized flappy feet, it would be extremely difficult not to fall in love with them at first sight!
When you have ducks from hatchling you can also build strong bonds and they will happily return your affection.
If you’ve ever watched a group of ducks fooling around on the water, it’s pretty amusing to watch! Ducks are quite the social animal, regularly communicating with each other through their body and vocal language, which it turns out is quite entertaining as you try and decipher what on earth they are quacking to each other about!
Provide lots of opportunities for play, via water outlets – pools, ponds, puddles, sprinklers, then just sit back and look on for hours of entertainment, adults and children alike!
Cons of Ducks as Pets
All Grown Up
Yes, just like any baby animal, they will eventually get bigger, louder and less fluffy! Ducklings grow really fast, within just a few weeks, your cute cup sized fuzz ball will have grown more than seven times its original size!
Sadly, the cuteness can wear off pretty quickly as you realise how unbelievably messy they are! They poop around the clock and it will be literally everywhere. When not free roaming and confined to a smaller enclosure, it really is quite the site! They will tread it down and mash it about…you will start to think they’re doing on purpose just to get a reaction!
The clean pool or tub of water will be clean for all of five minutes. When your head is turned, it will soon become a muddy, sludgy, gunky brown mess! In fact, any water source in your garden, left unmanned with have the same fate!
Whilst it may seem like a good idea to counter this problem by not providing a large body of water, you should consider that you would be denying them their natural, instinctual behaviour that they really enjoy.
So, with keeping ducks comes the daily responsibility of cleaning water sources and pens, unless of course, you keep them free roaming with a large, natural pond.
Ducks are loud. If you aren’t bothered by the noise, be prepared that your neighbours might be! One of the pros is they are social and like to communicate, well this may also be a con as when they’re in a group, it just takes one to let out a quack to set a chain reaction where they’re all at it! They certainly do love a good chat! The question is do you and your neighbours?!