Can Chickens Eat Cheese? | Is Excessive Cheese Bad For Them?

Chickens are the source of freshly laid eggs, so taking care of their health is important. Chickens love to have multiple treats in their feed and eat enthusiastically. If you are having some chickens in your backyard, you may question yourself about what to feed them from the kitchen. While looking in your refrigerator to treat the chickens, you may wonder about can chickens eat cheese? Absolutely yes, they will be excited about cheese.

Can Chickens Eat Cheese

Cheese comes in different varieties like cheddar cheese, mozzarella cheese, cottage cheese. To keep your domestic bird happy, it is important to introduce them to different treats time by time. Chickens have tiny stomachs, so a careful selection of treats should matter. They will eat or at least peck on everything you put into their feeding bowl. Measuring the food reactions from treats is the best way you can judge what to feed to your chickens or not. We are going to discuss can chickens eat cheese and in what proportion? Is it a healthy treat for them? Do chickens have dairy products like yogurt?

What Nutrients Does A Slice Of Cheese Have?

A thin piece of cheese slice contains the below-mentioned nutrients.

The fat content is about 7 grams while the calories intake is almost 80 percent. Proteins found in cheese are useful for a chicken’s body development. Protein deficiency could cause a hindrance in chicks growth.  Carbs are low in cheese of about 1 gram because it lies in the dairy products category. Cheese is high in calcium and vitamin A having a ratio of about 150 milligrams and 750 1U respectively. A high ratio of calcium plays a part in developing healthy chicken eggs. Chickens lay eggs daily so they can be calcium deficient. Even a little cheese can fulfill the calcium need.   It also has saturated fatty acids and cholesterol in it. Sodium is another important nutrient found in cheese. Moreover, one cup of cheese for the entire chick’s flok will contain. 

  • Fluoride  46.1 mcg
  • Selenium 18.3
  • Iron 0.9 mg
  • Vitamin B12  1.1 mcg
  • Vitamin D 15.8 UI
  • Cholesterol 139 mg
  • Sodium 820 mg

Can Chickens Eat Dairy?

Cheese is a great healthy treat for chickens when given in moderate portions and once a week. What do you think about giving backyard chickens other dairy products? Dairy is not as healthy for the chickens as we think. One needs to be smart while giving any dairy products to domestic or commercial hens. The main content of dairy products is milk. Unfortunately, chickens’ bodies do not produce enzymes that can break down milk sugars.

Providing dairy products such as milk occasionally will not provide any harm to their bodies. However, exceeding the required quantity and time of consumption will be a threat to their health. Milk has a high proportion of water, so giving it once in two weeks will be okay. During giving milk to them, make sure they digest it easily without getting any problems related to the digestive system.

Can Chickens Eat Yogurt?

Can Chickens Eat Yogurt
Yes chicken can eat yogurt

Feeding anything to chickens and then considering that it is good for them, is a big mistake. What is the nutritional value of the product and what each of them does is essential to know? Feeding yogurt to chickens is not recommended at all. Yogurt has bacteria that could be beneficial. However, other nutrients will have nothing to do with the chicken’s body. Simply, you can say that chickens’ bodies are lactose intolerant.

Maybe yogurt seems like a good option for chickens due to the high ratio of calcium, proteins, and other vitamins. Conversely, the chicken body does not contain enzymes that work for the digestion of milk and milk sugars.

Is Excessive Cheese Bad For The Chickens?

As we discuss, the chicken’s body does not produce enzymes that break sugars found in milk for digestion. The absence of these enzymes can disturb their digestive system. Chickens will eat the whole bunch of cheese with excitement but later will end up with stomach problems, like diarrhea. If diarrhea becomes out of control, it leads to dehydration.

Avoid giving excessive cheese to chickens, because they are unaware of what harm it will bring to their health. It is up to you, for what they could eat or not.

Is Cheese Safe For My Backyard Chickens?

Is Cheese Safe For My Backyard Chickens
Yes cheese is safe for chickens

Cheese is safe for the chickens in desired amounts only. Overdose of cheese for a prolonged period can cause some serious health-related problems. Let’s have a look at how cheese is a safe treatment option for my chickens?

  • Calcium Presence Helps In Eggs Production

Calcium is a powerful dietary nutrient found in cheese. Intake of calcium keeps the chickens healthy and maintains body functions. Calcium plays a vital role in strengthening the bones and muscles. The super-powerful salt in cheese also assists in egg production. The presence of enough calcium in the chicken’s body makes the egg shell harder. It prevents eggs from breaking and softening. Chicken’s as well as the human body are not able to produce calcium by themselves. Therefore, chickens have to consume calcium supplements through different food items.

  • Minerals In Cheese Boost Bone Health

Minerals like magnesium, calcium, Vitamin D, vitamin K, vitamin A, proteins, help to give a boost to bone health. These available minerals and proteins in cheese make bones strong and also play a part in bone development. They nurture the bones in a way that chickens remain safe from bone issues, like osteoporosis.

  • It Helps To Gain Healthy Weight

Fat is not good for chickens as well because it brings health complications. Maintaining a healthy weight is essential for chickens. People use chickens, not for the eggs but also the meat. We call them broiler chickens from which we get meat. These broilers should be fat and healthy for the commercial market value. Feeding cheese to broilers will help them to gain healthy weight for selling. Do not confuse healthy weight with obesity. Obesity is a call or invitation to health diseases.

  • Probiotic Bacteria And The Immune System

Cheese consists of probiotic bacteria that help boost the gut. These bacteria are useful for the digestion of food. Chickens having cheese as a treat have a far better digestive and immune system than other fellow folks.  

What Type Of Cheese Will My Chickens Like To Have?

Cheese comes in different flavors and types. If it’s the first time you are introducing chickens with the cheese, give them goat cheese. Goat cheese is more reliable as compared to cow cheese. This does not make other types of cheese a bad choice or an unhealthy one. At first, shredded cheese will be convenient for the chickens to eat. It is easy to bite on because it is soft.


Chickens will become overwhelmed when they find some cheese to eat. As cheese comes under dairy, certain things must be taken care of. You can feed cheese to chickens occasionally in limited amounts. Cheese can never replace supplements and feed needs. If you are about to try offering processed cheese products or cheese itself. Stop there, it is better to process cheese products that have no nutrients at all.

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