Chicken water - should sugar be added??

SE Arky, United States(Zone 8a)

My friend has raised chickens for several years - she adds sugar to her chickens' water. If I've ever heard of this, I've forgotten and my hubby's mom doesn't know about it either. I've searched google and DG for info and have not located a single thing. If there is such a thread, please direct me. What would be the purpose of the sugar and how much should be added? TIA!!

Claremore, OK(Zone 6a)

From what I've understood, adding sugar to the water is recommended
after day old chicks have been shipped, to help them get past the rough ride thru the postal system.
Other than that, I've never heard of it either. My chicks seem to do just fine with just plain water.

Fritch, TX(Zone 6b)

what peggie said is correct, the sugar is for day old chicks.

however, i have been participating in a group study with guineas and other fowl, and we are using this in our water:

Apple Cider Vinegar [as unfiletered or organic as possible]
Minced garlic, or whole cloves

You put the garlic IMMEDIATELY into the ACV, to infuse it's properties. Let it site overnight. About 1-2 cloves per liter. then add the mixture to their water! About an ounce per cup of water, or 1-2 cups per gallon.

They will love it, as soon as they get accustomed to it! You will see increased vigor, improved health and immune system. Also, i found that mice don't care for the water [the smell] and therefore have nothing to drink, AND therefore don't pee in the birds water, which can spread disease. I don't think birds can smell well, but they sure like the taste!!!

Good luck Sherry!

Camilla, GA(Zone 8a)

Been on the farm over 40 years, always had lots of chickens, all other fowl.... Good clean water does the trick..Clean and fresh is the key..


Southwestern, OH(Zone 6b)

I add sugar to my chickies water because the hatchery recommends it. Says it gives them energy.

I may try TF's suggestion, garlic is supposed to be good for us, why not them.... I wonder if it would affect the taste of the eggs?

Fritch, TX(Zone 6b)

the reports i have say it doesn't. keep in mind, that isn't a whole lot of garlic. this was developed as a health preventative for poultry, and seems to be working well!

like Larkie said, the water needs to be kept fresh [cool in summer, not frozen in winter, helps too!], and clean.

having the waterer at the level of the birds backs, by hanging it or putting bricks or blocks under it, helps prevent poop getting in...


Shenandoah Valley, VA(Zone 6b)

I go with straight up clean cold water too. No additives. If chickens have access to plenty of grasses and weeds, their immune systems should be getting all the help they need.

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