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Levamisole Dosage and Gapeworm

post #1 of 15
Thread Starter 

Hello Everyone,


I have 7 hens who live in my backyard and who have become my dear friends. They are about two years old. It is my first flock, and I have learned a lot. I have been lurking in the background of this forum for several years. I have always been able to find answers to my questions by searching, rather than making a post.


I have several chickens who have had problems with their voices. Some have almost no voice, or sound hoarse. One in particular has gotten very thin, she gapes (as do several others) and she eats very little. At times she seems a little depressed, but she still hunts. She closes her eyes a lot during the day. When she does eat, she's picky about what she eats. She doesn't seem to want to eat much protein. Won't eat tuna, scrambled egg, very little yogurt. She'll eat rice, the millet seeds in the Scratch, and tomatoes. If she finds a bug, or an earthworm, she will eat that. She hasn't laid in a while, and several of the others haven't laid in a while, either.


I've tried giving her injections of Tylan (because of her voice). In fact, have given all of the birds a round due to voices, and what looked like to me, trouble breathing. As for the hen who is really not doing well,  I thought for a while she might have sour crop, so I tried to treat that. Still the same. I have tried pumpkin seeds, Apple Cider Vinegar in the water, vitamins in their water, tried giving them carrot tonic water...I'm really at the end of my rope.


I read somewhere on the forum where someone suggestion using Valbazen (my regular wormer) 3 times within 10 days for gapeworm. (This did not help). Then another thread suggested that Levamisole was the THE thing for Gapeworm...but there was no dosage information.


I decided to ordered this (for cattle and sheep):


It will arrive on the Thursday. I'd like to try it, but I don't have a clue how much to give her, or what the best method is for delivery (water, down her throat, how much).


Any guidance or help would be greatly appreciated. Many of you have helped so much without even knowing it. You all are the greatest!


Thanks in Advance!

Edited by OdieDubya - 6/18/13 at 4:55am
post #2 of 15

I tried to find this answer and failed.  I do have this link which gives another link on gapeworms.


The product you purchased says 2 mL per 100 lbs and 1 mL per 50 lbs.  That would work out to 0.2 mL per 10 lbs.  If nothing else you could figure it this way.  If that is mixed in water, I don't know how effective it would be.


Good luck!

post #3 of 15
I read an abstract on worming that said to treat for gapes one could use Fenbendazole 20mg/kg for three days. I'll see if I can find the link.

post #4 of 15
post #5 of 15
Thread Starter 

Thank you so much for your replies. They are greatly appreciated!


I used the Valbazen 3 times in 10 days (as the link above said), and was going to do it again in 10 days. I usually give the Valbazen by mouth individually with a syringe without a needle. Some of them are now perkier than they have been in a long time with that dosage. A few of them, however, are still gaping, and having issues with their voices, and pant a lot when others are not panting. Then, I have the one who is very thin and not eating well. She doesn't make much noise, and her voice sounds horrible when she tries to...almost like a duck.


Then I stumbled upon this thread:


I ordered the product and tried to PM the person who suggested it (Maybe that was a bad idea). No answer yet. Now I have no idea how to use it.


I'm just desperate for the one hen, in particular.


I realize that there is a chance it's not gapeworm, but I've tried everything else for her. These are my pets, so culling is not an option.


I appreciate your help, but the link above said 15-20 mg in feed, but it doesn't say how much feed. She is so thin...I feel like I am picking up a feather. I don't want to over medicate her. As to the .2 ML per 10lbs for goats, She is probably not even 5 lbs, and I have no idea how I would measure that out. It says it's a powder.


Maybe I should order the Fenbendazole, as the link suggested, but I also read a study that said Levamisole is more effective for gapeworm.


Thank you so much for your responses! I really appreciate them!

post #6 of 15
If you want to be sure that you have killed any gapes, or the other worm mentioned in the abstract, buy some Safeguard, weigh your bird and give the wormer at 20mg/kg for three days in a row. Don't worry about the quantity it says for goats, because goats, horses and cows get 5-10mg/kg, poultry get 10-100mg/kg and I have proper veterinary literature to back that up.

You can't believe everything you read on the web, my posts included, but I tend to believe articles and abstracts like the two posted in this thread. If you're intererested, I can post photos of fenbendazole and Levamisole dosing from Plumb's Veterinary Drug Handbook.

Safeguard is very safe and I have used it on some very thin, sick, young birds and none have died from it. You should also know that I have used it at 50mg/kg for several days in a row and the birds have not shown any side effects.

I seriously doubt that your problem is gapes and if they were mine, they would be inside where it's warm. I would start by doing a thorough exam, weigh them, dust them with a proper poultry dust for mites/lice even if I could not see any. Then I would de-worm them with Safeguard 20mg/kg 3 days in a row. If they are thin, not eating/drinking, they get tube fed, period. I tube Pedialyte first to correct hydration at 30ml/kg every 6-8 hours. Once hydrated, I tube Pedialyte mixed with Kaytee Exact baby bird food.

If I suspected a bacterial infection I would treat with a broad spectrum antibiotic like Clavamox or Baytril.

Edited by casportpony - 6/19/13 at 9:22am
post #7 of 15
Thread Starter 

Thank you, Kathy. That was very helpful and very much appreciated.

post #8 of 15
Thread Starter 

I'm making this post for anyone searching for Levamisole dosage information in the future:


I found a comparable product, and I'm  using this dosage:


Poultry Dosage: 5 grams per 8 litres of water.


Should be administered through drinking water over a 6 hour period. Sufficient water should be used to ensure that all birds drink medicated water during this period. Add the amount required to a small quantity of water first; when completely dissolved add to medication tank mixing thoroughly.


Poultry Dosage

5 grams per 8 litres of water




I figured approximately 2 grams per gallon of water. I weighed it on my kitchen scale.

post #9 of 15
Hello, I know this is old but the link you posted is down. Do you still have the product information and dosage?
post #10 of 15
Originally Posted by alarson1019 View Post

Hello, I know this is old but the link you posted is down. Do you still have the product information and dosage?

Welcome to BYC! What are you trying to treat?

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