Keeping chickens as pets is growing increasingly popular, and I bet you can think of one or two celebrities who keep a flock in their backyard, just like you and me. Some of them “inherited” their chickens from previous property owners, but it seems a majority of popular celebs who keep chickens acquired them for much the same reason we do – because they like knowing where their food comes from and as learning tools for their children.
Interestingly enough, while some movie stars keep livestock on large ranches, many of them seem to keep them at their homes, in the heart of their respective cities.
Is raising chickens as pets the next hot trend? You decide for yourself! Here are six celebrities who are keeping chickens as pets and as a food source.
Gisele Bündchen & Tom Brady
Brazilian model Gisele Bündchen, along with her husband, NFL pro Tom Brady, keep chickens as pets for their daughter, three year old Vivian, and their other children. Gisele, who’s known as a health nut as well as an animal lover, is raising chickens for eggs so her children know where their food comes from.
Julia Roberts is another famous personality who is keeping chickens as pets. In interviews, Roberts has said that she likes raising heritage chickens because the fresh eggs are good for her family and for the environment. Both she and her husband, Daniel Moder, like keeping their girls and growing as much of their own food as possible. In a 2014 interview with InStyle, Roberts said that “We live in a world where really fresh produce and organic food are a financial luxury, so if we have that luxury I’m going to take advantage of it for my family.” It seems self-sufficient farm living is important to Julia!
Jennifer Aniston, of Friends fame, keeps chickens as pets, but fell into owning a flock accidentally. When she and her then-boyfriend (now husband) Justin Theroux bought a new Bel Air, California home in 2012, Aniston inherited her flock of hens. Apparently the old owners offered to rehome the chickens after the home sold, but Jennifer told them the chickens could stay, and in fact, were largely the reason she bought the house! Although it’s her first flock, she’s had help from grounds keepers to make sure the hens lead a healthy and happy life. The previous owners also left care instructions, since the hens get a homemade feed every day. Jennifer has also said in interviews that she is surprised by how social her hens are, and even takes great pride in harvesting her own food. Even if chicken ownership is new to her, she’s having a blast. Instead of wine, she now brings eggs as party gifts, and regularly gives eggs away.
As a self-proclaimed “Southern Girl” Reese Witherspoon keeps chickens as pets, and raises 20 hens and a rooster on her Ojai, California ranch. She also keeps two donkeys and a horse. The chickens were even rumored to be in her wedding.
Tori Spelling has gone quite crazy for her flock and does not just keep chickens as pets, but she designs clothes for them, too. Along with her husband and children, Spelling raises heritage chicken breeds, including Silkie chickens. Her favorite chicken at one point was a tiny white Silkie named Coco (after designer Coco Chanel). According to Tori, the Silkie was often mistaken for a poodle, and she had to correct people who mistook the chicken for a dog. But just like a puppy, Spelling took the chicken with her everywhere in her purse because Silkies, who are known to be the friendliest chicken breed, love to be held. Spelling seems like she has turned into a “crazy chicken lady” and likes to design outfits for the bird that match her own dresses, and even a poncho for cooler days (as an aside: chickens do not really need clothes except for hens who have been bothered by roosters to the point they’ve lost their feathers. They might need an apron until their feathers grow back.)
A photo posted by Tori Spelling (@torispelling) on Jun 1, 2014 at 12:08pm PDT
How could I leave Martha off this list? The domestic mogul is known for her large backyard flock. On her blog, Martha said that she started keeping chickens after seeing the deplorable conditions of large industrial egg farms. Knowing that her hens are treated right and always have the best care is important to her – as well as knowing the eggs she’s eating came from a healthy environment.
A photo posted by Martha Stewart (@marthastewart) on Jan 14, 2016 at 8:46am PST
Of course, Martha only raises chickens for organic eggs.