Pigs may eat chickens

Can Pigs Get Sick From Chickens? Can Chickens Get Sick From Pigs?

The more animals you raise, the more cumbersome it can be to isolate them in separate pens and houses. Housing chickens and pigs is becoming more popular but would create issues if they share diseases with each other.

Although chickens and pigs both have diseases that are very species-specific, let’s explore if there are illnesses that can affect both species.

Can Pigs Get Sick From Chickens or Vice Versa?

Chickens and pigs can get sick from each other. When animals live together in close proximity, they are bound to share germs, bacteria, parasites, worms, and certain diseases.

These illnesses are transmitted and shed through contaminated feces, saliva, shared food, and water.

Direct contact with an infected animal can also spread illness.

Pigs that have been sick are an issue with other animals. Some animals can take some hits to their intelligence if they get too sick. This can range from stupidly sweet animals to animals that have a fuse that is way too short.

can go from a kind baby to a ferocious beast in literal seconds. Only you know how your animal will act or react, so this is strictly a judgment call on your part.

Some bacteria and viruses can be transferred from fowl to swine. A few diseases can transfer from pigs to birds and vice versa.

If you take precautions, you can limit the risks to both species.

Swine Flu/ Avian Influenza Are Common on Chickens And Pigs

Swine flu and avian influenza are common diseases affecting chickens and pigs. Swine flu affects mainly pigs, but can be transmitted to chickens. Avian influenza mainly affects chickens, but can be transmitted to pigs.

Once these diseases have mixed with different species, they may mutate to form a new virus.

Swine flu is a mutation of avian flu.

Salmonella Passes Between Pigs and Chickens

Another rise is salmonella, which may not harm the chickens, but can be very harmful to pigs. It is passed on through the feces of the chicken.

Thankfully, vaccines have been developed that could prevent salmonella infections in both swine and chickens.

If appropriate measures are taken, it can reduce the risk in both species. 

Pigs Can Get Mycoplasma From Chickens

Certain strains of mycoplasma (bacteria that cause infections) can be spread between chickens and pigs, through direct contact with an infected chicken.

However, this is a rare occurrence. A pig can be infected with mycoplasma in numerous ways, such as by a pig eating an infected chicken’s eggs or waste.

Avian Influenza (Bird Flu)

Avian influenza can infect poultry, including chickens, and can also infect pigs. Certain strains of avian influenza viruses can potentially infect humans, and cross-species transmission can occur in mixed farms.

Vector-Borne Diseases

Some diseases, transmitted by vectors like flies or mosquitoes, can affect both pigs and chickens.

For example, diseases like West Nile virus or certain types of encephalitis can potentially impact both species.

Zoonotic Diseases

While not exclusive to pigs and chickens, zoonotic diseases that can affect both animals are of particular concern.

Campylobacter and other zoonotic diseases can be transmitted from animals to humans, often through contaminated meat, eggs, or the environment.


It’s important to note that the risk of disease transmission between pigs and chickens can be mitigated through proper biosecurity measures, vaccination, and regular monitoring of animal health.

Farm management practices play a crucial role in preventing and managing disease outbreaks in mixed farms. Farmers should work closely with veterinarians and follow recommended guidelines to minimize the risk of disease transmission between these two species.