What?! Cat food???

Judy

Crowing
Premium Feather Member
10 Years
Feb 5, 2009
34,024
577
448
South Georgia
It provides protein but also methionine, which can be harmful. If you give cat food, the quantity should probably be quite limited. See the note at the bottom of our Treats Chart:

https://www.backyardchickens.com/a/chicken-treat-chart-the-best-treats-for-backyard-chickens

There are many options. Any protein is beneficial but animal sourced protein is particularly a good idea, since chickens are omnivores. A lot of people switch to game bird feed during molt. It is higher protein. Note that it does not supply the extra calciium they may need when laying which of course they don't need during a molt, anyway. Some game bird feeds contain fish meal or other animal sourced protein, too. Some people give mealworms for protein.

You also don't want to give a ot of dairy since chickens are lactose intolerant. If you give any, choose forms that have the lactose already processed such as kefir or natural yoghurt. Some people do give milk or whey; probably, it causes a mild diarrhea and perhaps a "stomach upset.:"
 

Ol Grey Mare

One egg shy of a full carton. .....
7 Years
Mar 9, 2014
20,622
15,032
821
Oregon
My Coop
My Coop
It provides protein but also methionine, which can be harmful. If you give cat food, the quantity should probably be quite limited. See the note at the bottom of our Treats Chart:

https://www.backyardchickens.com/a/chicken-treat-chart-the-best-treats-for-backyard-chickens

There are many options. Any protein is beneficial but animal sourced protein is particularly a good idea, since chickens are omnivores. A lot of people switch to game bird feed during molt. It is higher protein. Note that it does not supply the extra calciium they may need when laying which of course they don't need during a molt, anyway. Some game bird feeds contain fish meal or other animal sourced protein, too. Some people give mealworms for protein.

You also don't want to give a ot of dairy since chickens are lactose intolerant. If you give any, choose forms that have the lactose already processed such as kefir or natural yoghurt. Some people do give milk or whey; probably, it causes a mild diarrhea and perhaps a "stomach upset.:"

X 2 - great explanation, Judy!
 

JLR405

Hatching
5 Years
Oct 9, 2014
6
0
8
El Reno, Oklahoma
My chickens love Meow Mix, that is what I feed my cat and they usually scare her off. I guess they have strength in numbers. lol I don't give them much though. For extra protein I usually give them a hard boiled egg. They love that too.
 

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