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Sick Bird

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 

I went out this morning and one of my hens didn't leave the coop and was sitting with one eye closed.  She stayed like this for a few hours.  Then she came outside and the eye opened a little but not all the way.  I was thinking she can poked in the eye.  Later today she now seems to be having trouble breathing.  I have isolated her.  She laid down and sorta sleeping. No sneezing, no watery nose. But some gurling sounds.  I'm getting very nervous.  I have read a bunch of threads and it doesn't sound good.  It seems now she will have this for her life and pass on to everyone else?  They say to kill her and have her tested.  Could this just be something else that she will heal with?  Everyone else seems fine.  Could it be anything else besides a respiratory infection.  I did do clean out the coop yesterday but everyone was outside while I did and outside for hours after.  Thanks for any input.  

post #2 of 9
I would try deworming just to be on the safe side but if there is some form of wheezing then I would bet on a respiratory issue.
post #3 of 9

Sounds like a respiratory infection from what you have described. It could be down to a number of causes - fungal, viral, bacterial etc. Chances are she will fight it. You may wish to consider giving electrolytes / vitamin supplements in her water to help boost her immune system. If it is viral and she gets through it (mine seem to) then she is likely to be a carrier for life, so yes it will affect the whole flock. From my experience, its more than likely that the rest of the flock will have already been exposed as it may have taken a few days of incubation before symptoms were expressed. I guess you will just have to wait and see on that one. Broad spectrum antibiotics may also help fight off secondary infections - i used to give them to my chickens, but these days i just let their bodies fight it (with close monitoring of course). 


If other birds do eventually show symptoms, then its crunch time - either cull the whole flock and start again, or continue with your flock in the knowledge that you will never be able to sell or give your chickens away. Thats the situation i faced, and chose the latter, but in retrospect, i wish i had opted for the former.


Good luck!



post #4 of 9
Thread Starter 

Thank you so much for the info.  She seems much better this morning.  Both eyes are open and clear.  She is eating a bit.  She still has some gurgling noises but not gasping like yesterday.  I'll keep her inside today unless she seems to be really wanted to get out of the cage.  I keep the chickens for eggs only so never planned on selling or giving any away.  I would not think so but this would not effect eggs in any way correct?  I will deal with the problem unless they all get sick and are suffering to bad. I wouldn't let that go on. 

thanks again. I'll get some electrolytes today. The feed store down the street I think has them.  Should I give them to everyone as precaution?

post #5 of 9

Hi, you are very welcome! Good to hear that she is doing better. No, respiratory issues will not affect eggs, so no sweat there. Yep, give electrolytes to the whole flock - can't do anything but good for them. 


All the best


post #6 of 9
Thread Starter 

Only one other chicken shows some signs of being sick the next day. But now a week later everyone is fine and happy.  I gave them all electrolytes and extra fresh veggies all week.

post #7 of 9
Thread Starter 

It has been about 3 months since my hen was sick and all has been good. No signs of illness at all. So now I have a new issue.  I have a Rooster that I have had for about 7 months. I was going to keep him, it is not mean to the hens.  But the last few weeks he starting attacking me.  Also, I take the eggs away as soon as I can, but I work all day.  So I have been getting some nasty surprises in my eggs.  I do have some hens that have been sitting on some eggs for about 3 weeks , so they may hatch, but that is a different story. Anyway. I want to get rid of the rooster but I understand I can't give him away because he has been exposed to what every illness the hen had. So what does that leave. I'm thinking about eating him, but I'm just not sure if I could do it. I can keep him for a while and just see what happens.  

post #8 of 9
Great to hear that your flock is doing well. What do you mean by "nasty surprises in your eggs"?

Either way, if you don't feel that you could eat him, you could always give him to someone who is happy to do so - just make it clear that he should not be introduced to a flock due to possible viral issues.

post #9 of 9
Thread Starter 

Well, i pick up the eggs twice a day. I hardboiled about a dozen and about 3 had what I thought was fertilized emproyo growing.  But now I'm thinking maybe that is not what it was.  The eggs smelt really bad.  It was all yolk not white, and a grayish membrane.  This is an emproyo growing no?  I don't understand because besides the eggs, my white hens are sitting on, I pick the eggs up all the time. 

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