Top 12 Small Chicken Breeds That Stay Small for Pets

Chickens have for decades been thought to be farm animals, but as urban areas continue to develop, cities have started to allow backyard chickens. 

Many people today are keeping chickens for their pet and companion potential. 

Even though some people keep these birds for egg production, there is too much that you can get from your small chicken. 

In this article, we are going to look at the best small chicken breeds that you can keep as a pet considering that roosters are generally more aggressive.

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What Are Small Chicken Breeds?

Anyone who loves chickens as pets knows that it is amazing to watch your chicken scratch around after having a long day at work. 

Many pet chickens will “purr” on your lap when they are excited, and they are easy to train because they are smart. 

Chickens are the best pets to bring into your family because they do not bark and distract your neighbors, and you do not need to walk them around. 

If you are a busy person, you can just leave them over the weekend and go about your business without worries. 

On average, a small chicken breed weighs around 2 pounds, and the ones on our list are the best when it comes to size, egg production, and best companion/ pets.

Below is just a list of some of the best small chickens you can keep as pets. They include:

  • Sebright
  • Silkie
  • Cochin Bantam
  • Sultan Bantam
  • Dutch Bantam
  • Rosecomb Bantam
  • Sablepoot
  • Belgian d’Anvers
  • Belgian Bearded d’Uccle
  • Japanese Bantam
  • Buff Brahma Bantam
  • Serama Bantam

Top 12 Small Chicken Breeds That Stay Small and You Can Keep as Pets

If you are looking to keep a chicken as a pet, you just need to know your priorities and know the traits of your chicken. 

Pet chickens are very beautiful, but they are not excellent egg layers. 

Small chickens can give you a high egg production of almost 6 eggs per week, but this can be overwhelming if you are not a backyard chicken breeder. 

On our list today, we are going to look at the best chickens that you can keep as a pet, depending on their egg-laying capacity, size, characteristics, and temperaments.

Small Chicken BreedsSize (smallest to larger)AppearanceCost
Serama Bantam1 poundFull breast, upright posture, and vertical tail feathers$10 to $15
Buff Brahma Bantam1 poundBroad large heads and protruding eyes$5 to $8
Japanese Bantam1.2 poundslong wings, large combs, and short legs$15 to $20
Sebright 1.3 poundsRounded breast and upright$10 to $15
Belgian d’Anvers1.5 poundssmall earlobes with profuse beard feathers$10
Dutch Bantam1.5 poundsSmall and have medium-sized white earlobes$8 to $10
Sablepoot1.8 poundsSoft fluffy appearance$8 to $12
Rosecomb Bantam2 poundsThin earlobes and blown-up look$4 to $10
Cochin Bantam2 poundsShort legs, medium-sized combs, and fluffy$3 to $6
Belgian Bearded d’Uccle2.3 poundsBearded face and fluffy feathers$4 to $8
Silkie4 poundsExtra muff that covers the beak and earlobes$10 to $15
Sultan Bantam5 poundsHidden earlobes, V-shaped combs, and feathery face$8 to $12
size, appearance, and price comparison table of small chicken breeds

1. Sablepoot

The Sablepoot is one of the rarest and oldest bantam chickens that exists today. 

It weighs less than two pounds, and because they are scarce, they are also costly. 

They are not normally kept for meat because of their size, but they will give you plenty of eggs. 

These birds are calm, friendly, and docile. In a year, they can lay between 150 to 180 eggs. 

Their body is generally covered with six inches of long feathers, and that is where it gets its Sablepoot name. 

Sablepoot is the best chicken to keep as a pet or for exhibition.

2. Silkie

Silkie small chicken breed
Silkie small chicken breed

Silkies are not the best for meat production, but if you are looking for a laidback pet chicken, they are the best. 

These birds weigh between two to three pounds, and they normally have a puffball-like body. 

In one year, a Silkie can lay around 120 eggs, and they are the best when it comes to brooding. 

Silkies are friendly and docile, and you can find them in many different colors. 

They are not the best for delicacy because their entire body is covered with black skin and their bones are also black.

3. Belgian d’Anvers

Belgian d’Anvers are low-maintenance chickens that weigh less than a pound but are also quite dominant. 

They are not very friendly with people and can sometimes be aggressive. 

These birds lay tiny eggs because of their size, and they are not excellent for meat. 

Annually, they can lay around 160 eggs, and they are mostly ornamental birds. 

Belgian d’Anvers are the best birds to keep as pets because they get along well with people and are very curious. 

If you like silence, these birds are not the best for you because they are very noisy and loud. 

You can find them in different colors such as mottled, black, white, millefleur, quail, and self-blue.

4. Sebright

Belgian D'Anvers and sebright small chicken breeds
Sebright and Belgian D’Anvers breeds of small chicken

The Sebright is a friendly and active British bantam chicken that got its name from Sir John Saunders Sebright during the 1800s. 

These birds weigh less than two pounds and will start laying eggs when they are around 16 weeks. 

They are the best birds to keep because they are low maintenance and are good ornamental breeds. 

A Sebright will give you around 160 eggs in a year, and because of their size, they are not the best for meat. 

Sebright gets along well with children, and you can find them in different colors such as Gold and silver.

5. Belgian Bearded d’Uccle

The Belgian Bearded d’Uccle is a calm, talkative and friendly bantam chicken breed that weighs less than two pounds. 

They are poor when it comes to meat production, but they are excellent for egg production. 

If you keep one of these birds, you should expect to get around 100 eggs per year as they are good at brooding. 

Many people normally confuse the Belgian Bearded d’Uccle with a Booted bantam, but the difference is the muffs and beards that these birds have.

6. Cochin Bantam

Cochin Bantam small chicken breed
Cochin Bantam small chicken breed

The Cochin Bantam originates from China, and they are docile, friendly, and sweet

Weigh less than two pounds! They are the best chickens to keep in your backyard as a pet. 

These birds will give you up to 160 eggs per year, and they make perfect mothers. 

Cochin Bantams come in different colors such as golden lace, white, buff, black, red, mottled, and partridge. 

This bird, generally, is the quietest. They can lay three to four eggs per week. 

The larger version of a Cochin Bantam weighs around nine pounds, but you can go for the smaller version if you love small chicken breeds.

7. Japanese Bantam

If you are looking for a chicken bantam that is easy to tame, friendly, and calm, then you need to go for a Japanese Bantam. 

As the name suggests, these birds originate from Japan, and they are not the best for egg production. 

You should expect to get less than 60 eggs in a year because they lay less than an egg every week. 

Japanese Bantams are excellent with children, and when spooked, they will hide. 

These birds have fanning tails, short legs that do not have feathers, and are extremely short.

8. Sultan Bantam

The Sultan Bantams are mostly considered ornamental birds, and they are the best to keep as pets or exhibition birds. 

They are not the best when it comes to meat production, and they also do not lay a lot of eggs. 

A Sultan Bantam weighs around 1.5 pounds, and, in a year, it can give you about 60 eggs. 

These birds are lovely, approachable, and docile, which means they get along well with children. 

The funny thing about these birds is that they have five toes instead of four. 

They have poofy feathers that cover their entire body from head to feet.

Dutch Bantam and Japanese Bantam small chickrn breeds
Dutch Bantam and Japanese Bantam small chickrn breeds

9. Buff Brahma Bantam

Buff Brahma Bantam are calm, docile, and friendly miniature chickens that weigh less than 3 pounds. 

This bird is not the best for egg production but will make the best exhibition bird or pet. 

Buff Brahma Bantams are easy to handle, and they are low maintenance. 

They are the smaller version of the popular Brahma breed, and because of their size, they can get along well with children of all ages. 

Their body is covered with buff-colored feathers, and you will find black ridges around their tail, neck, and wingtips.

10. Dutch Bantam

The Dutch Bantam originated from the Netherlands, and they weigh less than 20 ounces. 

These birds are flighty, friendly, and nervous, and when it comes to meat production, they are inferior. 

You can find these birds in different colors such as golden blue, partridge, golden duck wing, or even cuckoo. 

A Dutch Bantam will give you about 100 eggs in a year, and they are excellent when it comes to brooding. 

They make the best pets, and they are the best with children, although you need to keep a close eye. 

Every week, they expect to get around two tiny light brown eggs and are very protective of their chicks.

11. Serama Bantam

The Serama Bantam is one of the best birds to keep as a pet because they are confident, manageable, assertive, and calm. 

These birds weigh around 1.2 pounds and can produce about 160 eggs per year. 

Serama Bantams originated from Malaysia, and they can be found in different variants such as black, barred, black-tailed buff, and birchen. 

Because of their calm and friendly nature, they will get along well with family members making them excellent pets. 

These birds will give you around four eggs per week if you feed them well.

12. Rosecomb Bantam

Rosecomb Bantams are excellent ornamental birds that weigh less than two pounds. 

These birds are active, hardy, and friendly, and they do not produce many eggs per year. 

They are very nervous, and when spooked, they will go into hiding. 

If you are a first-time pet owner, the Rosecomb Bantam is not recommended because they can be aggressive and flighty. 

In a year, you should expect to get around 50 eggs from a single Rosecomb Bantam. They are not designed for meat. 

They usually lay tinted eggs and find these birds in white, black, and blue colors.

What You Need to Know

Small chickens come with lots of benefits no matter the breed you choose. 

They tend to take up a small space because of their size, and they also produce less waste. 

So, if you have limited space and are looking to keep a chicken as a pet, you should go for a smaller breed

Small chickens are easy to handle, and they are less expensive when it comes to raising. 

They will consume less food and small amounts of almost everything.

Wrapping Up

Raising a small breed of chicken is never that different from raising any other chicken, but there are things that you need to consider. 

You should always be careful during the incubation period because it can be challenging to do it yourself

Always ensure to keep an eye on the weather, as most small chicken breeds tend to be susceptible to extreme temperatures. 

Because of their small size, small chickens are prone to be taken by predators

So next time when you are considering keeping a bantam chicken as a pet or for exhibition, you should consider the breeds on our list.