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I REALLY need advice!

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
Hey there ev eryone. Im relatively new to owning chickens and we havent had any health issues untill this week. We just added six new hens to our flock. The next day my rooser was dead and the new hens are sick. Ive seen worms in their poop, whick I am treating them for it but theyre ,also acting really wierd. Some of them have bubblies in the corners of their eyes, theyre thin, smelly, have diareah kind of lethargic. a few of them stand around with their eyes closed like theyre goiing to fall asleep or take a nap. They dont eat like normal chickens eat or drink. The place they came from was REPULSIVE. I have safeguard wormer and corid liquid on hand but i havent used either yet. I treated them with wazine 17 about threee days ago and they have a few drops of oregano oil in their water. What do you think is going on?
post #2 of 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by hvcahill View Post

Hey there ev eryone. Im relatively new to owning chickens and we havent had any health issues untill this week. We just added six new hens to our flock. The next day my rooser was dead and the new hens are sick. Ive seen worms in their poop, whick I am treating them for it but theyre ,also acting really wierd. Some of them have bubblies in the corners of their eyes, theyre thin, smelly, have diareah kind of lethargic. a few of them stand around with their eyes closed like theyre goiing to fall asleep or take a nap. They dont eat like normal chickens eat or drink. The place they came from was REPULSIVE. I have safeguard wormer and corid liquid on hand but i havent used either yet. I treated them with wazine 17 about threee days ago and they have a few drops of oregano oil in their water. What do you think is going on?


This sounds serious. Your best bet is a veterinarian.

post #3 of 8

Is there any possibility of taking them back, and not asking for your money? It seems a bit quick for the rooster to have been infected, since MG and coryza can take a couple of days to show up after exposure. The new chickens sound very unhealthy, and I would probably cull them all if the seller won't take them back. They probably have  at least mycoplasma (MG) or coryza, which are contagious respiratory diseases, but other diseases may also be possible.  Any new chickens should be in quarantine for at least 30 days away from your healthy ones, so that you can worm them, look them over for lice and mites, and watch for disease symptoms. If you cannot cull them, then send on in to your state vet to euthanize and get a necropsy done to find out what they have. Then you can treat them with the right drugs, but they will probably all be carriers for life. So sorry that you have to deal with this mess, but good chicken wormers and antibiotics are expensive, and there are dishonest people who will sell sick chickens. Sorry for your rooster's loss. Here is some reading about the 2  respiratory diseases:

 

Mycoplasma gallisepticum

Synonyms: MG, chronic respiratory disease (CRD), infectious sinusitis, mycoplasmosis

Species affected: chickens, turkeys, pigeons, ducks, peafowl, and passerine birds.

Clinical signs: Clinical symptoms vary slightly between species. Infected adult chickens may show no outward signs if infection is uncomplicated. However, sticky, serous exudate from nostrils, foamy exudate in eyes, and swollen sinuses can occur, especially in broilers. The air sacs may become infected. Infected birds can develop respiratory rales and sneeze. Affected birds are often stunted and unthrifty (see Table 1).

There are two forms of this disease in the turkey. With the "upper form" the birds have watery eyes and nostrils, the infraorbitals (just below the eye) become swollen, and the exudate becomes caseous and firm. The birds have respiratory rales and show unthriftiness.

With the "lower form", infected turkeys develop airsacculitis. As with chickens, birds can show no outward signs if the infection is uncomplicated. Thus, the condition may go unnoticed until the birds are slaughtered and the typical legions are seen. Birds with airsacculitis are condemned.

MG in chicken embryos can cause dwarfing, airsacculitis, and death.

Transmission: MG can be spread to offspring through the egg. Most commercial breeding flocks, however, are MG-free. Introduction of infected replacement birds can introduce the disease to MG-negative flocks. MG can also be spread by using MG-contaminated equipment.

Treatment: Outbreaks of MG can be controlled with the use of antibiotics. Erythromycin, tylosin, spectinomycin, and lincomycin all exhibit anti-mycoplasma activity and have given good results. Administration of most of these antibiotics can be by feed, water or injection. These are effective in reducing clinical disease. However, birds remain carriers for life.

Prevention: Eradication is the best control of mycoplasma disease. The National Poultry Improvement Plan monitors all participating chicken and turkey breeder flocks.

 


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There are many common and important diseases which can affect the respiratory system (air passages, lungs, air sacs) of poultry (see Table 1). Poultry refers to birds that people keep for their use and generally includes the chicken, turkey, duck, goose, quail, pheasant, pigeon, guinea fowl, pea fowl, ostrich, emu, and rhea. Due to modern systems of management, usually with high poultry densities, these diseases are able to readily spread.

Fowl Pox

Synonyms: chicken pox (not to be confused with chicken pox in humans; the human disease does not affect poultry and vice versa), sore head, avian diphtheria, bird pox

Species affected: Most poultry—chickens, turkeys, pheasants, quail, ducks, psittacine, and ratites—of all ages are susceptible.

Clinical signs: There are two forms of fowl pox. The dry form is characterized by raised, wart-like lesions on unfeathered areas (head, legs, vent, etc.). The lesions heal in about 2 weeks. If the scab is removed before healing is complete, the surface beneath is raw and bleeding. Unthriftiness and retarded growth are typical symptoms of fowl pox. In laying hens, infection results in a transient decline in egg production (see Table 1).

In the wet form there are canker-like lesions in the mouth, pharynx, larynx, and trachea. The wet form may cause respiratory distress by obstructing the upper air passages. Chickens may be affected with either or both forms of fowl pox at one time.

Transmission: Fowl pox is transmitted by direct contact between infected and susceptible birds or by mosquitos. Virus-containing scabs also can be sloughed from affected birds and serve as a source of infection. The virus can enter the blood stream through the eye, skin wounds, or respiratory tract. Mosquitos become infected from feeding on birds with fowl pox in their blood stream. There is some evidence that the mosquito remains infective for life. Mosquitos are the primary reservoir and spreaders of fowl pox on poultry ranges. Several species of mosquito can transmit fowl pox. Often mosquitos winter-over in poultry houses so, outbreaks can occur during winter and early spring.

Treatment: No treatment is available. However, fowl pox is relatively slow-spreading. Thus, it is possible to vaccinate to stop an outbreak. The wing-web vaccination method is used for chickens and the thigh-stick method for turkeys older than 8 weeks.

Prevention: Fowl pox outbreaks in poultry confined to houses can be controlled by spraying to kill mosquitos. However, if fowl pox is endemic in the area, vaccination is recommended. Do not vaccinate unless the disease becomes a problem on a farm or in the area. Refer to the publication PS-36 (Vaccination of Small Poultry Flocks) for more information on fowl pox vaccinations.

Newcastle Disease

Synonyms: pneumoencephalitis

The highly contagious and lethal form of Newcastle disease is known as viscerotropic (attacks the internal organs) velogenic Newcastle disease, VVND, exotic Newcastle disease, or Asiatic Newcastle disease. VVND is not present in the United States poultry industry at this time.

Species affected: Newcastle disease affects all birds of all ages. Humans and other mammals are also susceptible to Newcastle. In such species, it causes a mild conjunctivitis.

Clinical signs: There are three forms of Newcastle disease—mildly pathogenic (lentogenic), moderately pathogenic (mesogenic) and highly pathogenic (velogenic). Newcastle disease is characterized by a sudden onset of clinical signs which include hoarse chirps (in chicks), watery discharge from nostrils, labored breathing (gasping), facial swelling, paralysis, trembling, and twisting of the neck (sign of central nervous system involvement). Mortality ranges from 10 to 80 percent depending on the pathogenicity. In adult laying birds, symptoms can include decreased feed and water consumption and a dramatic drop in egg production (see Table 1).

Transmission: The Newcastle virus can be transmitted short distances by the airborne route or introduced on contaminated shoes, caretakers, feed deliverers, visitors, tires, dirty equipment, feed sacks, crates, and wild birds. Newcastle virus can be passed in the egg, but Newcastle-infected embryos die before hatching. In live birds, the virus is shed in body fluids, secretions, excreta, and breath.

Treatment: There is no specific treatment for Newcastle disease. Antibiotics can be given for 3–5 days to prevent secondary bacterial infections (particularly E. coli ). For chicks, increasing the brooding temperature 5°F may help reduce losses.

Prevention: Prevention programs should include vaccination (see publication PS-36, Vaccination of Small Poultry Flocks), good sanitation, and implementation of a comprehensive biosecurity program.

Infectious Bronchitis

Synonyms: IB, bronchitis, cold

Species affected: Infectious bronchitis is a disease of chickens only. A similar disease occurs in bobwhite quail (quail bronchitis), but it is caused by a different virus.

Clinical signs: The severity of infectious bronchitis infection is influenced by the age and immune status of the flock, by environmental conditions, and by the presence of other diseases. Feed and water consumption declines. Affected chickens will be chirping, with a watery discharge from the eyes and nostrils, and labored breathing with some gasping in young chickens. Breathing noises are more noticeable at night while the birds rest. Egg production drops dramatically. Production will recover in 5 or 6 weeks, but at a lower rate. The infectious bronchitis virus infects many tissues of the body, including the reproductive tract (see Table 1). Eggshells become rough and the egg white becomes watery. (See publication PS-24, Egg Quality, for other causes of poor egg quality.)

Transmission: Infectious bronchitis is a very contagious poultry disease. It is spread by air, feed bags, infected dead birds, infected houses, and rodents. The virus can be egg-transmitted, however, affected embryos usually will not hatch.

Treatment: There is no specific treatment for infectious bronchitis. Antibiotics for 3–5 days may aid in combating secondary bacterial infections. Raise the room temperature 5°F for brooding-age chickens until symptoms subside. Baby chicks can be encouraged to eat by using a warm, moist mash.

Prevention: Establish and enforce a biosecurity program. Vaccinations are available.

Quail Bronchitis

Synonyms: none

Species affected: Bobwhite quail are affected. Japanese corturnix quail are resistant. The disease is prevalent in the southern states where bobwhite quail are common. Quail bronchitis occurs seasonally as new hatches and broods come along each year.

Clinical signs: Respiratory distress occurs with tracheal rales (rattles), sneezing, and coughing. Feed and water consumption declines dramatically. There can also be conjunctivitis (inflammation of the eye). Loose watery feces are seen in older and sub-acutely affected birds. Nasal discharges are not seen, differentiating quail bronchitis from similar diseases in other poultry (see Table 1).

Transmission: Once infected, quail bronchitis remains on the farm for the duration of the breeding season, infecting each successive brood.

Treatment: There is no specific treatment against quail bronchitis. Quail bronchitis infections are often complicated by concurrent mycoplasma infections. Antibiotics can be used to combat secondary infections. Add tylosin (500g/ton) to the feed for 10 days, withhold the medication for 5 days, and then repeat medication for 5 days. Alternate medication regimens are tylosin (Tylan) or erythromycin (Gallimycin) in the drinking water for the same period of time.

Prevention: There is no commercial vaccine on the market. It is necessary to break the cycle by depopulating and thoroughly cleaning and disinfecting pens and equipment, followed by a 30–90 day quarantine of the facilities.

Avian Influenza

Synonyms: AI, flu, influenza, fowl plague

Species affected: Avian influenza can occur in most, if not all, species of birds.

Clinical signs: Avian influenza is categorized as mild or highly pathogenic. The mild form produces listlessness, loss of appetite, respiratory distress, diarrhea, transient drops in egg production, and low mortality. The highly pathogenic form produces facial swelling, blue comb and wattles, and dehydration with respiratory distress. Dark red/white spots develop in the legs and combs of chickens. There can be blood-tinged discharge from the nostrils. Mortality can range from low to near 100 percent. Sudden exertion adds to the total mortality. Egg production and hatchability decreases. There can be an increase in production of soft-shelled and shell-less eggs (see Table 1).

Transmission: The avian influenza virus can remain viable for long periods of time at moderate temperatures and can live indefinitely in frozen material. As a result, the disease can be spread through improper disposal of infected carcasses and manure. Avian influenza can be spread by contaminated shoes, clothing, crates, and other equipment. Insects and rodents may mechanically carry the virus from infected to susceptible poultry.

Treatment: There is no effective treatment for avian influenza. With the mild form of the disease, good husbandry, proper nutrition, and broad spectrum antibiotics may reduce losses from secondary infections. Recovered flocks continue to shed the virus. Vaccines may only be used with special permit.

Prevention: A vaccination program used in conjunction with a strict quarantine has been used to control mild forms of the disease. With the more lethal forms, strict quarantine and rapid destruction of all infected flocks remains the only effective method of stopping an avian influenza outbreak. If you suspect you may have Avian Influenza in your flock, even the mild form, you must report it to the state veterinarian's office. A proper diagnosis of avian influenza is essential. Aggressive action is recommended even for milder infections as this virus has the ability to readily mutate to a more pathogenic form.

For more information on avian influenza, refer to publication PS-38 (Avian Influenza in Poultry Species).

Infectious Coryza

Synonyms: roup, cold, coryza

Species affected: chickens, pheasants, and guinea fowl. Common in game chicken flocks.

Clinical signs: Swelling around the face, foul smelling, thick, sticky discharge from the nostrils and eyes, labored breathing, and rales (rattles—an abnormal breathing sound) are common clinical signs. The eyelids are irritated and may stick together. The birds may have diarrhea and growing birds may become stunted (see Table 1).

Mortality from coryza is usually low, but infections can decrease egg production and increase the incidence and/or severity of other diseases. Mortality can be as high as 50 percent, but is usually no more than 20 percent. The clinical disease can last from a few days to 2–3 months, depending on the virulence of the pathogen and the existence of other infections such as mycoplasmosis.

Transmission: Coryza is primarily transmitted by direct bird-to-bird contact. This can be from infected birds brought into the flock as well as from birds which recover from the disease which remain carriers of the organism and may shed intermittently throughout their lives. Birds risk exposure at poultry shows, bird swaps, and live-bird sales. Inapparent infected adult birds added into a flock are a common source for outbreaks. Within a flock, inhalation of airborne respiratory droplets, and contamination of feed and/or water are common modes of spread.

Treatment: Water soluble antibiotics or antibacterials can be used. Sulfadimethoxine (Albon®, Di-Methox™) is the preferred treatment. If it is not available, or not effective, sulfamethazine (Sulfa-Max®, SulfaSure™), erythromycin (gallimycin®), or tetracycline (Aureomycin®) can be used as alternative treatments. Sulfa drugs are not FDA approved for pullets older than 14 weeks of age or for commercial layer hens. While antibiotics can be effective in reducing clinical disease, they do not eliminate carrier birds.

Prevention: Good management and sanitation are the best ways to avoid infectious coryza. Most outbreaks occur as a result of mixing flocks. All replacement birds on "coryza-endemic" farms should be vaccinated. The vaccine (Coryza-Vac) is administered subcutaneously (under the skin) on the back of the neck. Each chicken should be vaccinated four times, starting at 5 weeks of age with at least 4 weeks between injections. Vaccinate again at 10 months of age and twice yearly thereafter.


Edited by Eggcessive - 3/12/16 at 4:54pm
post #4 of 8
Thread Starter 

I cant bring them back. I wouldn't do that to an animal. I think that I will just be nursing them back to health. The wormer has helped and I gave them some nutridrench and that seemed to perk them up quite a bit. Theyre eating better and drinking more. Two of them are pretty sick still but I have some Amprol that I'm going to start today.  I think one may end up needing to be put down. Her vent is swollen above it and its really dirty and she keeps pecking at it. It seems like it hurts her to poop. Is that a prolapse? I'm dreaming about sick chickens at night now. Hahaha I appreciate your advice.

post #5 of 8

I'm sorry for what you are going through. I don't know if I could handle it. I wish you good luck with restoring them to a better health. I don't think you should take them back either. Can you contact the HSUS (Humane Society)?

Keep doing what you are doing but don't let them suffer. There are worse things than a quiet, peaceful end. With that level of disease your  Ag extension agent/ Animal Health Service might be able to help?

Good Karma to you.

post #6 of 8
Thread Starter 

Our town does little to nothing about this sort of thing, unfortunately. I'm going to give the one that is really sick until tomorrow before I have my husband put her out of her misery.  ​I got to really inspecting today and they are completely infested with mites. So that's the route I'm going now. Never will I get chickens from her again but I do think I will report her. She has close to fifty chickens out there.

post #7 of 8

What a horrible thing!  I'm so glad that there are people out there like you who will try to help.  How are they doing?

post #8 of 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by hvcahill View Post
 

Our town does little to nothing about this sort of thing, unfortunately. I'm going to give the one that is really sick until tomorrow before I have my husband put her out of her misery.  ​I got to really inspecting today and they are completely infested with mites. So that's the route I'm going now. Never will I get chickens from her again but I do think I will report her. She has close to fifty chickens out there.

sorry that you lost your rooster. 

 

One thing to try for the very sick one - is give her a bath in very warm water.  I use the dog soap Adam's tick & flea for bathing chickens.  Then rinse her soap off in a tub or bucket with vinegar in the water, and clean water for the final rinse.  Towel dry by blotting and blow dry with a hair dryer in the direction that the feathers go.  It should get rid of lice and mites immediately.  

 

Sadly with that much external parasite infection, you will need to treat your coops as best you can for mites.  the lice spend their life on the chickens.  

 

Wishing you luck - and like the others  - sorry that you have to go through this. 

Marek's:http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/mareks-disease-fact-site

BYC page:  http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/chickats-page  

BYC blog of sorts  http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/jottings-ii

 

"Was dich nicht umwirft, macht dich starker"   "What doesn't kill you, makes you stronger."-Friedrich Nietzsche 

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Marek's:http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/mareks-disease-fact-site

BYC page:  http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/chickats-page  

BYC blog of sorts  http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/jottings-ii

 

"Was dich nicht umwirft, macht dich starker"   "What doesn't kill you, makes you stronger."-Friedrich Nietzsche 

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