A chicken coop or hen house is a building where female chickens are kept. Inside hen houses are often nest boxes for egg-laying and perches on which the birds can sleep, although coops for meat birds seldom have either of these features.
A chicken coop usually has an indoor area where the chickens sleep and nest as well as an outdoor area where chickens will feed and spend the majority of the day. Inside the chicken coop are dropping boards or litter (such as straw) to collect chicken feces. A chicken coop should be cleaned every two to three weeks and the litter shifted every day, like a cat's litter box. A coop should be locked at night with all the chickens inside of it so that the chickens are protected from predators.
A coop may have an outdoor run. Both the inside and outdoor floors of a chicken coop are often strewn with a loose material such as straw or wood chips to deal with chicken droppings and to allow for easier cleanup. Most chicken coops have some means of ventilation to help air out any smells.