Apple Cider Vinegar: ACV

Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV) for chickens has had some very good press over the last ten years. There has been lots of research done where ACV has been added to one group of chicken’s water and the compared against the other ‘control’ group.

Cider Vinegar for chickens is acidic and it is this acidity that means ACV is a mild anticeptic and will kill a number of germs. In addition to this, it is claimed to act like a mild antibiotic. Antibiotics kill infectious bacteria that can cause disease in chickens.

In addition to these benefits, Apple Cider Vinegar is full of vitamins, minerals and trace elements that are beneficial to your chickens but you do have to be careful where you buy ACV from – don’t go rushing off to Tesco just yet!

5 litre Apple Cider Vinegar

Click Image to Buy on Amazon

Apple Cider Vinegar has been proven to help chickens with stress which is one of the main contributors to their immune system lowering and letting in disease. I use ACV during the following times:

  • Moving house
  • Introducing new birds
  • If snow falls on the ground (a stressful change in environment for chickens)
  • After a fright – eg fox attack
  • After injury
  • Once per month for a week for the health benefits

You can buy ACV from Amazon

Dillution Rate of Apple Cider Vinegar

ACV should be dilluted at a rate of 2% in fresh drinking water. This is the same as saying 20ml in every litre. Make sure you are using plastic water containers because it is acidic and will corrode galvanised containers. The normal rate at which to give to chickens in order to be beneficial is for one week per month. If you choose the first week of every month, it will be easier to remember. Chicks and growers can be given 0.5% ACV in water or 5ml per litre.

Do you have any information on Apple Cider Vinegar? Please leave me a comment below.


  1. I have looked at this site, amongst others, and found it to be just sooo informative and well written. I don’t have chickens but my daughter does and is having pecking problems, Clara has just decided to peck Amber so we need a bit of help and insight into this…… Thankyou folks for supplying answers regards and good luck everyone x Catherine B

    • First a question (sorry to answer your question with a question): How much space do they have? Most problems occur in small runs. Giving more space and enrichment (greens hanging that they have to jump for e.g. a cabbage, CDs hanging as a distraction, their corn allowance raked into the run substrate for scratching during the day etc) will help most of these sort of problems.

      Unless you are just introducing them for the first time, if this has suddenly developed, it’s either a re-organisation in the pecking order (Amber was top chicken but is under the weather and Clara has decided it’s a good time to challenge the top position) OR they are getting bored and fractious so turn to bullying as a way to vent these frustrations.

      In the extreme case, look at the state of Ex-battery hens – they are confined, are very placid hens yet will bully one another until they have few feathers remaining when enclosed in such a small cage.

  2. One of my chickens has a swelling at the top of her leg it appears to be filled with a clear liquid ,she is still moving about but the swelling is now restricting her mobility ant ideas ?

    • This sounds like Mycoplasma Synovia – If it doesn’t get better, I would take her to the vet, she may need antibiotics.

    • Yes, sorry it is a little confusing. There are various suppliers for ACV and most of them suggest 20ml per litre or 2%. There are others saying other dilution rates though but it’s not like a medication – it is a natural product so the quantity isn’t exact.

      I have to update the links on the site as sellers come and go on Amazon and other sites so the information doesn’t always quite match up.

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  4. Thanks for your website. Great reading. I have two chicks approximately 3 years old and one has recently lost her balance. Combs shrunken. Eating layers pellets well. Although her coordination is not as it was. Her legs seems slightly stiff too.. I haven’t wormed them for some time – will do today. Am going to buy ACV and a new plastic drinking container today.

    • One of our pet cheaper has lost her foot. She lost it this morning when the door was forced shut by wind pressure onto her and it took her foot off. She has eaten and drank water with salt and sugar twice today. She flew onto the couch and seems to be getting a little better. What can anyone suggest? Thank you.

      • I would take her to the vet. She is likely to be in a lot of pain and may need pain relief to stop the shock. They will usually use Metacam for this.

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