Can Goats Eat Chicken Feed?

Can Goats Eat Chicken Feed?

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Chicken Feed

Chicken feed is a type of feed for chickens, typically used in chicken farming. Chicken feed is made of corn, soybeans, wheat, oats, and other ingredients. This feed is then mixed with other ingredients such as animal protein, vitamins, minerals, and more. The ingredients are ground into flour and mixed with water to make a dough which is then extruded into pellets. Chicken Feed exists in different forms including pellets, crumbles, and mash. Chickens are omnivores, this implies that they can feed on both plant and animal food items. Goats are known to be able to eat anything which is not entirely true. However, can chicken feed be fed to goats?

Can Goats Eat Chicken Feed? 

Goats cannot eat chicken feed. Chicken feed is poisonous to goats. It is advised not to feed chicken feed to goats. Goats are herbivores and chickens are omnivores they have different dietary needs. For this reason, chicken feed is not a suitable food item for goats. 

Chicken Feed is designed to meet the nutritional needs of a chicken. Although it does contain the nutrients that goats need to survive, the nutritional value does not make it a good option for goats. The calcium/phosphorus ratio in chicken feed is harmful to the health of goats. 

Effects of Feeding Chicken Feed to Goats 

Chicken feed is regarded as a poisonous food item to goats. Feeding chicken feed to goats can be very harmful to their health. Chicken Feed contains animal protein. Feeding food items that contain animal protein to goats causes a lining of fat to form in their stomach. This lining of fat will affect their absorption rate. Although chicken feed does contain nutrients that can be beneficial to goats, it is still designed to meet the nutritional requirements of a chicken and not a goat. 

Ruminal Acidosis

Chicken feed contains high amounts of protein. Goats cannot digest food items that contain too much protein. Overfeeding food items rich in protein can lead to ruminal acidosis. Ruminal acidosis is a condition in which the rumen of a goat becomes too acidic, causing a loss of important nutrients and energy. The rumen is the first part of the digestive tract of goats. It is located between the omasum and the abomasum. When the rumen becomes too acidic. It leads to a decrease in rumen motility, increased gas production, and a breakdown of tissue proteins. This can cause a loss of appetite, weight loss, and decreased milk production. It can lead to a decrease in feed intake and growth. When this happens, goats will often stop eating and experience a reduced appetite. Ruminal acidosis is also associated with anaerobic digestion, which is the process of breaking down food in an oxygen-free environment. It can be a life-threatening condition that can cause the death of goats.


Feeding chicken feed to goats can lead to laminitis. This is due to the high protein content in chicken feed.  Laminitis is a disease of the hoof that results in painful inflammation of the laminae, which are the hard, bony structures that make up the front of the hoof. When this happens, it can lead to lameness and, eventually, the founder. Laminitis occurs when a goat’s weight is too much for the soft tissue structures that support the hoof. As a result, the hoof’s blood supply is reduced, which causes pain and swelling. The goat is also unable to put weight on its feet or walk properly. 


Chicken feed can cause goats to bloat. Bloating is a form of indigestion caused by excessive accumulation of gas in the rumen of goats. One of the most common symptoms of bloating is a feeling of distension in the abdomen. This can often be accompanied by a build-up of gas and air, and discomfort when breathing or swallowing. Other symptoms of bloating may include abdominal pain, nausea, and diarrhea. The goats may bite or kick the abdominal region, followed by increased discomfort, and in some cases leads to death. Bloating can be challenging to treat and often requires medical attention as a stomach tube will need to be inserted.


Chicken feed contains animal protein. Animal protein is very dangerous to the health of goats. Feeding goats food items that contain animal protein causes a lining of fat to form in their stomach walls. This lining of fat affects their absorption rate. When the absorption rate is affected, the stomach would not be able to absorb nutrients. This means that even if goats are eating their primary diet which is grass and hay, they will suffer from starvation because the nutrients are not being absorbed into their body. 


Feeding chicken feed to goats can cause diarrhea. Diarrhea is a condition in which the intestines and rectum release large amounts of water and mucus that have not been absorbed by the body. It is caused by an imbalance of fluids and electrolytes in the body. Diarrhea can be mild or severe. It is a common symptom of gastrointestinal conditions.


Feeding chicken feed to goats can cause Enterotoxemia. This is due to the high grain content in chicken feed. Enterotoxemia is a disease in goats caused by the ingestion of bacteria that live in the goat’s rumen. When a goat eats chicken feed, the rumen bacteria can enter the goat’s bloodstream and cause a systemic infection. Symptoms of enterotoxemia include fever, anorexia, and a lack of appetite. These symptoms could be seen as early as one day after ingesting the bacteria, but more often they appear three to four days after ingestion.

It is advised not to feed chicken feed to goats. Goats are herbivores and their primary diet should consist mainly of grass and hay. Fruits and vegetables can also be fed to goats occasionally as a form of a snack. Goats need a balanced diet that contains all the nutrients needed for their development. It is important to ensure that their food is nutritionally balanced, and contains all the essential nutrients they need to function properly.


Goats should not be fed chicken feed. Chicken feed as the name implies is designed to meet the nutritional needs of chicken. Chickens and goats have different dietary needs as chickens are omnivores and goats are herbivores. Feeding chicken feed to goats can be dangerous to the health of goats.

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