When you own pigs, you learn that pigs eat a lot of food!
Finding leftover or excess food options for your pigs is a great way to offset the cost of corn and other pig food concentrates.
It’s also a great way to make sure nothing goes to waste, but the question is, how do eggs fit into the mix?
Can pigs eat eggs and eggshells?
Eggshells are mostly safe for pigs to eat. Eggs, along with their shells, contain a multitude of healthy nutrients that contribute to a pig’s overall health. However, there are some precautions when it comes to feeding eggs to pigs and some specific eggs are simply not safe for pigs to consume.
Being able to feed eggs to your pigs is a great way to utilize the extra eggs the chickens lay or ones that may be taking up room in the fridge.
It is important to learn about eggs and what they offer pigs for nutrition so that you can make the best decision for your feeding program.
There are some precautions you should always consider before including eggs in a pig’s daily diet.
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How Healthy are Eggs for Pigs?
Eggs are extremely healthy for pigs, if they are fed in moderation.
Eggs contain protein, calcium, and potassium along with antioxidants like vitamin A and C. (source) These nutrients are all important to the health and wellbeing of pigs.
How Healthy are Eggshells for Pigs?
Eggshells are substantially healthy for pigs.
Eggshells contain high amounts of calcium along with some small levels of magnesium and selenium.
Calcium is essential for bone growth, which makes it a great addition to a pig’s daily diet. (source)
Eggshells can be broken up into small pieces or even ground up to help make them extra safe for pigs.
Can Pigs Eat Raw Eggs?
It is not recommended to feed raw eggs to pigs. While a couple here and there may not cause a problem, substantial amounts of raw eggs in a pig’s diet can cause issues.
Raw eggs contain avidin, which prevents biotin absorption in whatever eats them.
Pigs need biotin in their diets and a biotin deficiency could lead to reproductive problems as well as foot issues. (source)
Cooking the eggs before feeding them removes the avidin and solves the problem.
Can Pigs Eat Boiled Eggs?
Pigs can eat boiled eggs and they usually love them!
Boiled eggs can be fed whole, deshelled or mashed up. Mashing, or breaking up hard-boiled eggs makes them easier for pigs to eat.
This is especially true for young pigs that could potentially choke on a large, hard-boiled egg.
A lot of pig farmers, however, feed whole boiled eggs to their pigs and do not have any issues.
Are Scrambled Eggs Safe for Pigs?
Scrambled eggs are very safe for pigs as long as they are thoroughly cooked.
Always allow scrambled eggs to cool before feeding them to pigs.
Avoid adding salt or other unnecessary additives to scrambled eggs to keep them as healthy and safe as possible.
Can Pigs Eat Whole Eggs?
Pigs will eat whole eggs, whether they have shells covering them or not.
Cooked, whole eggs are safe for adult pigs, when fed in moderation. Whole eggs that have not been cooked should not be fed to pigs.
Eggs should never account for the whole meal for a pig. Avoid feeding whole eggs to young pigs to prevent choking incidents.
Are Rotten Eggs Safe for Pigs?
Rotten eggs should never be fed to pigs because they are not safe.
Rotten eggs can contain bacteria and other microbes that can cause gastric distress. If an egg is rotten, throw it in the trash, not the pig’s trough.
5 Other Interesting Things Pigs Will Eat
Pigs love to root in the dirt and they will eat many of the bugs that they find along the way.
They are not typically very picky eaters, as you can tell, so bugs do not phase them.
2. Vegetable Leftovers
Pigs enjoy eating the vegetable scraps that most people just toss in the trash.
Squash, zucchini, cucumbers, broccoli, and carrots are all safe for pigs to eat.
This is a great way to recycle your leftovers instead of tossing them in the trash.
Bananas are great treat options for your pigs. Bananas are full of beneficial nutrients including potassium.
Pigs can eat the fleshy part of the banana as well as the peel.
Some farmers let their pigs roam freely on pastures throughout the day, which means they eat grass! In fact, pigs love eating grass and it is good for them!
Grass is a forage that adds fiber to a pig’s diet. Grass, however, should not make up the bulk of a pig’s diet.
5. Slop or Mash
Many farmers feed their pigs slop that is full of dinner scraps, breads, ground corn or other food.
Pig farmers will sometimes mix breads and other pig-safe foods with water to make them easier for pigs to eat. By adding water, farmers also make sure their pigs are getting plenty of hydration along with their meals.
Pigs can safely eat eggs as well as eggshells, but they are healthiest when fed in moderation.
Eggs and eggshells should never make up most of a pig’s daily diet, but they are a great source of protein. Pigs, like all animals, need a balanced diet to keep them as healthy as possible.
Just steer clear of rotten eggs and make sure the eggs are fully cooked and cooled before they are fed to pigs.