Can Chickens Eat Chia Seeds? 5 Awesome Benefits

As a responsible chicken owner, you want to ensure your chickens get all the nutrients they need to stay healthy and happy. So, can chickens eat chia seeds?

The answer is yes – chia seeds are perfectly safe for chickens to eat in moderation. Not only that, but they’re really good for them! Chia seeds are packed with nutrients that can help keep your chickens healthy.

Here’s everything you need to know about feeding chia seeds to your feathered friends.

can chickens eat chia seeds

Can chickens eat chia seeds?

Yes, chia seeds are a healthy and tasty treat you can feed to chickens in moderation. Chia seeds are an excellent source of nutrition for chickens. They’re a good source of protein, fiber, and omega-3 fatty acids, all of which are important for chicken health.

Protein helps chickens build strong muscles, feathers, and bones. Fiber promotes a healthy digestive system, and omega-3 fatty acids have anti-inflammatory properties that help keep chickens healthy.

In addition, chia seeds are a good source of vitamins and minerals, including calcium, phosphorus, and magnesium.

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The benefits of eating chia seeds for chickens

The humble chia seed is often overlooked, but did you know that these tiny seeds are packed with nutrients that can benefit your chickens? Here are five ways that eating chia seeds can help your feathered friends.


Chia seeds are a good source of fiber, which is essential for promoting a healthy digestive system in chickens. Fiber also helps to regulate cholesterol levels and can even reduce the risk of some types of cancer.


Chia seeds are also a good source of calcium, which is essential for strong bones and muscles. Chickens need calcium to produce eggshells, so if you’re looking to get the most out of your hens, make sure they’re getting enough calcium in their diet.


Chia seeds are rich in antioxidants, which can help to protect cells from damage and improve chicken health overall. Antioxidants can also help to boost the immune system, making chickens less susceptible to illness.


Chia seeds are a good source of omega-3 fatty acids, which benefit cognitive function, heart health, and more. Omega-3 fatty acids can also help to reduce inflammation in the body, making them ideal for chickens that suffer from respiratory problems or other conditions that cause inflammation.


Chia seeds are a good source of vitamins A, C, and E, all of which are important for chicken health. Vitamin A is essential for vision and immunity, and vitamin C helps to promote collagen growth and heal wounds. Vitamin E is an antioxidant that helps to protect cells from damage.

Things to watch out for when feeding chia seeds to chickens

whole chia seeds

Chia seeds are a popular treat for chickens, but there are a few things you need to know before you start feeding them to your flock. Here are three things you need to watch out for when feeding chia seeds to chickens.

Swelling in the Crop

One of the things you need to watch out for when feeding chia seeds to chickens is swelling in the crop. This can happen if the chicken eats too many chia seeds at once or if the seeds get wet and swell up inside the chicken’s crop. If your chicken’s crop looks swollen, stop feeding them chia seeds and contact your veterinarian.

Digestive Issues

Another thing to watch out for is digestive issues. This can happen if your chickens eat too many chia seeds or if you don’t soak them before feeding them to the chickens. If you notice your chickens have loose stools or are vomiting, stop feeding them chia seeds and contact your veterinarian.

Only Feed as a Treat

Chickens can eat chia seeds, but they should only be fed as a treat. Chia seeds are high in fat and calories, which can lead to weight gain if they’re eaten in large quantities. When feeding chia seeds to chickens, only give them a small handful at a time and ensure they’re getting plenty of fresh greens and other healthy foods.

How often should chickens eat chia seeds?

Chia seeds are a healthy addition to any chicken diet, but how often should they eat them? Chickens can have chia seeds most days. However, like all things, moderation is key when it comes to feeding chia seeds to chickens.

They should make up no more than 5% of a chicken’s diet, and you should feed no more than a tablespoon per chicken each day. Too much chia can cause digestive issues in chickens, so it’s important to err on the side of caution. When fed in moderation, however, chia seeds can be a healthy and delicious addition to a chicken’s diet.

So, if you want to add something extra to your chickens’ diet, consider giving them chia seeds. Just be sure to limit their intake to prevent gastrointestinal issues.

How to prepare chia seeds for feeding to chickens

chickens standing

Chia seeds can be scattered on the ground for your chickens to forage or soaked in water and mixed with their pellets. Here are a few different ways of preparing chia seeds for your chickens.

Scattering The Seeds

The first option is to scatter the chia seeds on the ground. You can do this by hand or with a scattering tool. If you use a scattering tool, ensure the seeds are evenly distributed.

You want your chickens to have access to all of the benefits that the chia seeds offer, so make sure they are not clumped together in one area.

Soaking The Seeds

The second option is to soak the seeds in water. This will soften them and make them more palatable for your chickens. To soak the seeds, add them to a bowl of water and let them sit for 30 minutes. After 30 minutes, drain the water and give the soaked seeds to your chickens. They will love them!

Mixing With Pellets

The third option is to mix the chia seeds with your chicken’s pellets. This is a great way to get them started on eating the seeds. Add a handful of chia seeds to their pellets and stir well. The pellets will absorb some moisture from the seeds and help hold everything together.

Can baby chickens eat chia seeds?

Chia seeds are a popular superfood, but is it safe to feed them to baby chickens? The short answer is: yes, but only in moderation.

According to most experts, giving baby chickens chia seeds is safe once they’re four weeks old. However, they should only consume a small amount – no more than a teaspoon or two every few days. Too much chia can cause diarrhea in baby chicks.

So, while chia seeds are technically safe for baby chickens, it’s important to feed them in moderation.

Can chickens eat chia pets?

Many people are surprised to learn that chickens can eat chia pets. While it is essential to check that the chia pet does not contain toxins that could harm the chicken, they are generally safe for chickens to consume.

Chia pets make a fun treat for chickens, and they can provide some essential nutrients. In addition, eating a chia pet can help to keep a chicken’s beak healthy and trim. As a result, chia pets can be an excellent addition to a chicken’s diet.

What other seeds can chickens eat?

sunflower seeds

When it comes to chicken feed, chia seeds are all the rage these days. And for a good reason – they’re packed with essential nutrients for your chickens’ health. But did you know that there are other seeds that your chickens will love just as much? Here are four of our favorites.

Pumpkin Seeds

Pumpkin seeds are an excellent source of protein, vitamins, and minerals. They’re also rich in antioxidants, which can help boost your chickens’ immune system.

Flax Seeds

Flax seeds contain high levels of omega-3 fatty acids, which are important for maintaining your chickens’ skin and plumage health. They also have anti-inflammatory properties, which can help reduce joint pain and stiffness.

Read More: Can Chickens Eat Flax Seeds? 5 Important Benefits

Sunflower Seeds

Sunflower seeds are a great source of vitamin E, which is vital for maintaining your chickens’ vision health. They’re also rich in omega-6 fatty acids, which can help keep your chickens’ skin and plumage healthy and lustrous.

Read More: Can Chickens Eat Sunflower Seeds? 6 Fantastic Benefits


Quinoa is a complete protein containing all the essential amino acids your chickens need to build muscle tissue. It’s also high in fiber, which can help keep your chickens’ digestive system running smoothly.

How to give chickens a healthy and balanced diet

Like any other animal, chickens need a well-balanced and healthy diet to live a long and prosperous life. Chicken feed is specially formulated to provide all the nutrients they need, but there are other things you can do to ensure your chickens get everything they need to stay healthy and happy.

We’ll discuss four ways to give your chickens a healthy and balanced diet.

Fruit and vegetables

The first way to give your chickens a healthy diet is by supplementing their feed with fresh fruits and vegetables. Chickens love scratch, a mix of cracked grains, but supplementing their diet with fresh fruits and veggies will help them get the vitamins and minerals they need. Just be sure to wash everything thoroughly before giving it to them.


You can also provide them with grit. Grit is small rocks that help chickens grind their food in their gizzard. They must have grit available at all times because they can easily become sick without it. You can buy grit at most pet stores or online.


Another way to ensure your chickens are getting a healthy diet is by providing them with clean water at all times. Chickens drink a lot of water, so it’s important that their water dish is clean and filled with fresh water daily. You can also add a little vinegar to their water once a week as it helps keep them healthy by preventing bacteria growth.


The last thing you can do to ensure your chicken’s diet is well-balanced and healthy is to feed them table scraps in moderation. Cooked rice, pasta, vegetables, and some fruit are all great options for table scraps and are tasty treats for chickens. Just be sure not to overdo it, as too many table scraps can lead to obesity in chickens.

Can chickens eat chia seeds – final thoughts

Chickens love chia seeds, and they’re perfect for them. Chia seeds contain nutrients that help keep your chickens healthy, including protein, fiber, omega-3 fatty acids, vitamins, and minerals.

When feeding chia seeds to your chickens, start with a small amount and gradually increase it over time so their digestive system can adjust. A general guideline is to give no more than one tablespoon of chia seeds per chicken per day.

Add the chia seeds to your chickens’ regular food or offer them as a treat – don’t give them too many treats, or they may fill up on them and not eat their regular food.

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Jill Taylor Happy Farmyard

Jill Taylor

Jill is a full-time homesteader who enjoys learning about sustainable living and practicing self-reliance. She'll most likely be found tending to her many animals including chickens, ducks, goats, and alpacas. You can find out more about her on LinkedIn.