Apple Cider vinegar has been gaining popularity over recent years due to all of its beneficial properties. Perhaps you’re considering giving it a shot, or maybe you think it’s too good to be true.
Is Apple Cider Vinegar really safe for chickens? One should note that not all natural products are completely safe. It is always safe and advisable to double-check everything before applying to your flock, even using household items.
The good news is, Apple cider vinegar is not only safe but can also be beneficial to your chickens.
Apple Cider Vinegar is Safe for Chicken
Yes! Apple Cider Vinegar is safe for chickens if it is used moderately in small amounts. It is healthy and can work wonders for your chickens.
There has been much research, stories, and testimonials about the benefits of using apple cider in animals, including chickens. Apple Cider can help keep the immune system stronger, allowing them to fight off any nasty diseases and infections that frequently plague flocks.
Using Apple cider vinegar is generally safe to use if given in small amounts. Keep in mind that you should add water to dilute it using only a plastic or rubber container. Vinegar corrodes metal, which can be harmful to your birds’ health.
We have compiled a comprehensive list of what apple cider vinegar can do for your chickens. But first, we will know how apple cider is made, and its ingredients.
How Apple Cider Vinegar is Made
Apple cider vinegar comes from apples that go through the process of fermentation. Fermentation turns them into acetic acid, which is the main active ingredient in vinegar and may be responsible for its health benefits.
It has a pH of 5 and is slightly acidic. It’s made with organic acetic acid, which gives it a sour vinegar flavor. Among its nutrients are phosphorus, magnesium, potassium, and calcium, as well as vitamins and minerals.
It also contains Acetobacter and lactobacillus which are probiotic bacteria. Apple cider has been used for a long time, both in cooking and its health benefits to humans. People nowadays make various claims for its use, ranging from aiding weight loss to improving digestion and beyond.
Nutritional Value of Apple Cider Vinegar
|Nutrition||Value (per 100g)|
|Energy||21 Kcal [90KJ]|
Unpasteurized Apple Cider Vinegar with “Mother”
Apple Cider Vinegar has two types. The pasteurized or filtered and unpasteurized or unfiltered. Both versions use a “mother,” a substance made of cellulose and friendly bacteria that converts the apple juice from alcohol to vinegar.
The mother is the only significant difference between the two types of apple cider vinegar.
Filtered ACV will be pasteurized and will have no trace of the mother. Pasteurization destroys beneficial bacteria. The filtered version of ACV does not provide the same health benefits.
Look for ACV that is natural, organic, and unpasteurized. This raw, unprocessed type contains the mother. The “mother” is what makes the apple cider vinegar healthy for chickens. The “mother” forms during fermentation and provides probiotics as well as vitamins and minerals.
Health Benefits of ACV to Chickens
Apple cider vinegar has numerous benefits for the overall health of chickens because of its acetic acid content. Some of these advantages include the treatment of respiratory problems, the prevention of heat stress, the relief of pain, the treatment of diarrhea, the treatment of lice and mites, the preservation of water, and many others.
● Can kill germs and bacteria
Apple cider vinegar, which has antiseptic properties, can help kill germs by being added to chicken drinking water. It may also have minor antibacterial properties that help keep bacteria at bay.
● Rich in vitamins and minerals
In addition to being antibacterial, apple cider vinegar is also loaded with minerals, vitamins, and other nutrients. You must, however, exercise caution when purchasing organic goods to ensure that no harmful ingredients have been added.
● Stress-Reducing Effects
Feeding chickens apple cider vinegar has the added benefit of reducing stress in the flock. The immune system of a bird can be severely weakened by stress. A chicken’s health will suffer if this is compromised. They have a higher risk of contracting or developing a disease because of this.
● A great remedy for diarrhea
A dirty bum or watery feces are signs that a chicken is suffering from diarrhea. Drinking water with apple cider vinegar will hasten the recovery of chickens that are having upset stomachs. It will eliminate any harmful bacteria that accumulate in their waterer and contaminates the water that your flock drinks.
● Clear respiratory system
Many chicken owners use this acidic solution to keep their birds’ lungs in good shape. ACV may help keep your chicken’s airways clear, whether it’s perfectly healthy or predisposed to respiratory issues.
● Strengthen the immune system
Apple Cider vinegar is a simple, organic way to maintain your immune system. The immune system is essential for keeping your birds healthy. A little vinegar in their water can help to reinforce that critical strength.
● Regulate pH levels
ACV is frequently used to regulate pH levels in the body, which is beneficial to bird digestion. Despite being more acidic than alkaline, apple cider vinegar has an alkalizing effect. A healthy body that is slightly alkaline will be able to fight disease and infection more.
● Cocci treatment
Coccidiosis is an animal-specific intestinal disease. Giving probiotics to your hens can help them maintain a normal and healthy level of culture and good bacteria in their bowels. ACV will help keep the more dangerous cocci bacteria from multiplying to the point where they cause scours and dehydration.
● Worm treatment
Worms are one of the problems faced by poultry raisers affecting the chicken’s health. They are internal parasites that mess with the bird’s digestive system. One of the simple and natural ways to prevent worms in your chickens is to use apple cider vinegar.
Worms are killed because ACV has a low pH. The low pH level creates a hostile environment in the chicken’s lower gut that can kill the worms in your chicken’s stomach.
Other Uses of Apple Cider Vinegar For Chicken Coops
Natural Antiseptic and Disinfectant
ACV can be used to disinfect the surfaces of your chicken coop. It will help cut grime and kill germs. Just make sure to dilute it more if you’re going to use it around chickens.
Mite and lice treatment
ACV can kill mites or lice that live in your flock. Just put a mixture of water and ACV in a spray bottle and spray it around the chickens. You can also use the solution to help eliminate any pesky critters.
The low pH of the ACV is suitable for killing harmful bacteria and keeping the water free from algae and gunk. Poultry Keeper recommends using 2 percent apple cider vinegar in your water solution.
Make sure the waterer is not metal because metal is known to rust when exposed to vinegar.
Neutralize Bad Odors
When there is a strong odor coming from your chickens, use your water solution to spray a few spritzes to temporarily freshen the air.
Apple cider vinegar dilution rate for chickens
Dilute your apple cider vinegar in a 2 percent ratio with fresh, clean water, which equals 20 milliliters per liter.
How often should chickens be given apple cider vinegar?
With apple cider vinegar, you can make a big difference in your flock’s health and well-being by giving them just a little bit each day. You only need to add 1ml per chicken to the feeder or watering can.
Different Ways to Administer Apple cider vinegar to chickens
The most common way used to give ACV to your flock is by adding a few drops into the water. However, there are other ways to administer apple cider vinegar to your chickens.
Aside from adding it to their water, you can also mix the daily dose of apple cider vinegar into their chicken feeds.
If there are lice or mites, you can add a few drops of apple cider vinegar to the bathwater.
Apple Cider Vinegar for Baby Chicks
Yes, ACV can be used on baby chicks. Apple cider vinegar is beneficial to the digestive systems of even young chickens. Some people believe it also aids in avoiding pasty butt, but there is no evidence to support this claim.
The dilution for baby chicks should be much lower than for adults. According to research, use 5 ml per liter of water or a teaspoon to about 4 cups.
The addition of apple cider vinegar to your chicken is both safe and beneficial in numerous ways. As a result of its high natural goodness, it helps keep your bird’s immune system strong and healthy so that it can fight off diseases and bacterial infections. As a disinfectant, it keeps the coop fresh-smelling and free of parasites while also keeping it clean.
However, bear in mind that apple cider vinegar is a supplement that can support the overall health of your chickens, not a treatment for diseases.
Joseph Hudson has been raising chickens for over 15 years. In 2018, he completed the Agriculture & Natural Resources program at Mt. San Antonio College. He currently raises over 1400 chickens on his 7.5-hectare farm. He keeps sharing his experience on raising healthy and happy chickens on Chicken Scratch The Foundry.