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Virus or bacteria? I'm so confused. Could be MG? Chronic Respiratory Disease?

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
I've been reading a variety of resources and am struggling with what I should do. My chickens have developed a respiratory issue. I don't know what started it. I am guessing irritation from nesting materials, simple virus, or Chronic Respiratory Disease. I now have half my flock wheezing and sneezing. I want them to get better, but I don't want to jump to blanket treatment with an antibiotic if I don't have to.
Can a chicken get a cold? If they do, can they get better without treatment? I'm reading many things that jump to antibiotic but... I just don't know about that...
Arg.
Throw it at me. What options do I have? Am I crazy for thinking that they might just get better on their own?
Edited by tao chick - 11/27/15 at 12:28pm
I'm creating Pleasant Row chickens: I'm starting with goals of cold hardy, dual purpose, and always bearded using Ameraucana, Crested Cream Legbar, Copper Marans, EE, Orpington, and Rock.
I'm also working toward improving the Cream Brabanter breed.
Reply
I'm creating Pleasant Row chickens: I'm starting with goals of cold hardy, dual purpose, and always bearded using Ameraucana, Crested Cream Legbar, Copper Marans, EE, Orpington, and Rock.
I'm also working toward improving the Cream Brabanter breed.
Reply
post #2 of 6
Quote:
Originally Posted by tao chick View Post

I've been reading a variety of resources and am struggling with what I should do. My chickens have developed a respiratory issue. I don't know what started it. I am guessing irritation from nesting materials, simple virus, or Chronic Respiratory Disease. I now have half my flock wheezing and sneezing. I want them to get better, but I don't want to jump to blanket treatment with an antibiotic if I don't have to.
Can a chicken get a cold? If they do, can they get better without treatment? I'm reading many things that jump to antibiotic but... I just don't know about that...
Arg.
Throw it at me. What options do I have? Am I crazy for thinking that they might just get better on their own?

Are they all still eating  and acting normal?

 

-Kathy

post #3 of 6
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by casportpony View Post

Are they all still eating  and acting normal?

-Kathy
Yes. So far. The one that wheezes the most was eating the last time I checked on her.
I'm creating Pleasant Row chickens: I'm starting with goals of cold hardy, dual purpose, and always bearded using Ameraucana, Crested Cream Legbar, Copper Marans, EE, Orpington, and Rock.
I'm also working toward improving the Cream Brabanter breed.
Reply
I'm creating Pleasant Row chickens: I'm starting with goals of cold hardy, dual purpose, and always bearded using Ameraucana, Crested Cream Legbar, Copper Marans, EE, Orpington, and Rock.
I'm also working toward improving the Cream Brabanter breed.
Reply
post #4 of 6

I'm not sure I would treat them if they were eating, acting 100% normal and not losing weight.

 

-Kathy

post #5 of 6
Thread Starter 
No other symptoms presented. Each chicken in my flock had some sneeze or rattle or cough. Each of them seems to have little or no symptoms at this point. So my question is, do I still worry about it being MG or serious thing that they'll perpetually carry? Should I call a vet for some bloodwork?
I'm creating Pleasant Row chickens: I'm starting with goals of cold hardy, dual purpose, and always bearded using Ameraucana, Crested Cream Legbar, Copper Marans, EE, Orpington, and Rock.
I'm also working toward improving the Cream Brabanter breed.
Reply
I'm creating Pleasant Row chickens: I'm starting with goals of cold hardy, dual purpose, and always bearded using Ameraucana, Crested Cream Legbar, Copper Marans, EE, Orpington, and Rock.
I'm also working toward improving the Cream Brabanter breed.
Reply
post #6 of 6

The only way to know what they have is to get one tested, an avian vet can send of blood work and other tests.  Or if one dies you can have a necropsy done by a state lab. 

 

Other then that, there are many different respiratory diseases chickens can get, many are viral, some are bacterial.  Antibiotic's won't help if it's viral.  The problem is that viral diseases can easily and quickly morph into bacterial infections if chickens are very congested and have a lot of junk in their airways.  So it's a choice you'll have to make regarding antibiotics.  If you hear heavy wheezing or rattling breathing it's probably a good idea to treat.  Once they get pneumonia it's hard to bring them back. 

 

Whether or not they continue to have problems with this from now on depends on what they have.  Some diseases create a carrier state that can flare up repeatedly, others run their course and you may never see another outbreak.  This is why testing is very helpful.

wife to long suffering husband who has built more miles of fence, barns, coops and enclosures then one man should have to, two teenage boys, current flock of 13 assorted hens, 1 big red roo and a list of other assorted farm animals. 
Reply
wife to long suffering husband who has built more miles of fence, barns, coops and enclosures then one man should have to, two teenage boys, current flock of 13 assorted hens, 1 big red roo and a list of other assorted farm animals. 
Reply
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