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HELP! Chicken making a whining noise and sneezing.

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 

I have a chicken, who has come into her lay about 7 eggs ago, maybe two weeks.  She suddenly this morning is whining, it almost sounds like a cat meowing. 

It is constant, and when she sneezes, the whine gets higher in pitch for about two whines.

Then she continues to whine, I would say with every breath.  The whines last about 1.5 seconds each, with a period of 1 to 2 seconds in between.

We have been getting hit with a lot of snow, but the temperature in the coop doesn't get much below freezing at night. 

We just yesterday got a foot of snow.

Has anyone ever dealt with this....I cannot find much online, but this is a very strange and specific symptom.

I honestly thought a cat was injured under the coop at first, until I noticed it was Gandalf making the noise.  It sounds so sad. 

As far as I can tell, she is not eating or drinking this morning. 

post #2 of 7

Possibly a respiratory infection, but the whining sounds more like she's inhaled something. I've had a few cases of that, one recovered within 48 hours (still have her) --- she was braying like a donkey with every breath, unable to walk more than a few steps for oxygen starvation --- and the other died, well, with assistance, because over the course of about a week she got worse and worse and worse until she was blue in the face, really struggling for breath, and clearly dying by increments. So it was a mercy cull.

 

Common cause is feeding loose dry feed, especially something they love and scoff madly, or right when they're really hungry. Dry husks, cracked grains, powdered feeds, and small seeds like millet are primary causes in my experience.

 

A couple of times a year I'll have a chook sneeze loudly after inhaling millet, generally young ones as they learn to not scoff it so quickly, but wetting down or soaking the feed cuts the risk enormously, and over my years of chicken keeping there's only been those two cases that had an issue with having inhaled something. I've kept many hundreds of chooks by now, so it's not a large percentage that had issues. I also don't know that it was the feed in their cases at all. I soak it almost as a rule anyway, helps bind powdered additives or smaller particles to the larger ones, enables them to gain much more nutrition from the grains, etc...

 

Hydrogen peroxide can do wonders for clearing the respiratory system, especially for shifting very deep seated infections. You can give it to the hen neat or add it to the general water. That will also help if it's a contagious problem. You'd need the plain and diluted (or dilute it yourself) hydrogen peroxide, not the stuff they've added toxic agents to in order to prevent its use as anything other than cleaning fluid; one drop will help but a couple more is better, but it doesn't take much at all to help.

 

If this is an inhaled foreign object rather than virus or fungal infection or whatever, though, hydrogen peroxide might not be too useful. After all the fluid buildup in the case of a foreign object would ideally help her shift it on a sneeze and reducing that could be counterproductive. Just a possibility, not a guarantee.

 

Raw garlic, recently minced or crushed, is also great at disinfecting the mucosal membranes of the body, it has over 30 natural and powerful antibiotics in it and is fast-acting. It can help prevent respiratory issues from developing and help clear existing issues. So can slippery elm bark powder but that's more expensive and probably better used on a case by case basis.

 

If you suspect this may be contagious then dosing all the flock with raw garlic would be ideal to bolster their immune systems and tackle the infection.

 

One to two cloves per hen is a good start and you can keep it up for a week, or only a few days, or whatever suits. I feed it regularly. Adding it to yoghurt can help get them to eat it if they don't like it to start with, but in the case of respiratory infection processed dairy is worth avoiding because it does make respiratory infections worse in a lot of animals. So you could try adding it to their normal feed, as in soak the garlic with the grains so they get the taste of it (they generally take a day or two to make up their mind about new dietary additions in my experience), which will also ensure each hen gets some into her system even if she only eats the grain. My hens pick it out, I used to think maybe some would miss out because of that, but each hen takes as much as she feels she needs and individual needs fluctuate over time, so everyone gets some. They do self-medicate, given a chance. 

 

If this is something inhaled, as it sounds like it is, it's pretty deep by the description you gave, not higher up the respiratory tract like my survivor hen's case, and she's obviously in a bit of trouble and there's not really anything you can do except hope she expels it, sorry.

 

If she's not eating I wouldn't worry about it for one or two days but any longer is a concern. If she's not drinking at all, that's a bigger issue and might be a vet case if you can afford it. Some people have even injected fluids into the lower bowels of chickens to hydrate very desperate cases.

 

If you think it's a viral/fungal/bacterial cause, then any one of the things I mentioned could help, or artificial antibiotics may; you can even safely and with benefit use garlic, hydrogen peroxide, slippery elm and artificial antibiotics in conjunction with one another. Garlic boosts the efficacy of artificial antibiotics.

 

Anyway, not a good scenario, but I hope she makes it.

 

Best wishes.


Edited by chooks4life - 2/27/15 at 6:56am

Self-sufficiency farmer with all sorts of all sorts, aiming to get more sorts of more sorts. Working on my own strains & breeds. 

Athlete, nerd, artist, gamer, writer, maker-of-stuff, perpetual student. Ignorance is not bliss, it's suffering! I may be strange but I'm not malicious, so if I give offense please reconsider taking it. ;)

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Self-sufficiency farmer with all sorts of all sorts, aiming to get more sorts of more sorts. Working on my own strains & breeds. 

Athlete, nerd, artist, gamer, writer, maker-of-stuff, perpetual student. Ignorance is not bliss, it's suffering! I may be strange but I'm not malicious, so if I give offense please reconsider taking it. ;)

Reply
post #3 of 7
Thread Starter 

She is eating and drinking now.....although the meows seem to be getting less audible.....which seems to me like she is gasping more for air....

Her stool is fine, as she has been in the bathroom for the last two hours, so I can check on those things....

 

I have a garlic solution in a dropper form for my fish tank.  I did drop some water in her throat with a dropper and massaged her crop a bit.  It felt normal. 

Thanks for the advice.

 

The day before yesterday I got pellet food for them for the first time.....they usually get a mash / scratch mix and sometimes eat ultra-kibble, and scratch, meal worms, and carrot shreds as treats......but this was the first time they got the pellets.

I put the pellets in a separate feeder from the mash mixture.

 

Here is a video of whats going on..

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O29uYgB_xKM
 

post #4 of 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by McGraw Farms View Post
 

She is eating and drinking now.....although the meows seem to be getting less audible.....which seems to me like she is gasping more for air....

Her stool is fine, as she has been in the bathroom for the last two hours, so I can check on those things....

 

I have a garlic solution in a dropper form for my fish tank.  I did drop some water in her throat with a dropper and massaged her crop a bit.  It felt normal. 

Thanks for the advice.

 

The day before yesterday I got pellet food for them for the first time.....they usually get a mash / scratch mix and sometimes eat ultra-kibble, and scratch, meal worms, and carrot shreds as treats......but this was the first time they got the pellets.

I put the pellets in a separate feeder from the mash mixture.

 

Here is a video of whats going on..

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O29uYgB_xKM
 


That is odd, it's almost like she's making that noise vocally not as a byproduct of inhaling forcibly past an obstruction. But definitely occurring on the inhale so it must be the latter.

 

I was thinking it might be pellets or mash, sometimes the very dry and powdery stuff causes issues for chooks.

 

Her face isn't purple or blueish and she looks bright-eyed enough, hopefully it's recoverable. Time will tell. If pellets/mash did this, not something more solid, the mass should break down rather quickly and she should be clear soon... Unless it goes deeper into her respiratory system and causes infection.

 

Unfortunately getting quieter was a bad sign with the one I lost, and she did struggle more for breath as she got quieter on the breathing, which with her was a real wheeze.

 

Good luck.

Self-sufficiency farmer with all sorts of all sorts, aiming to get more sorts of more sorts. Working on my own strains & breeds. 

Athlete, nerd, artist, gamer, writer, maker-of-stuff, perpetual student. Ignorance is not bliss, it's suffering! I may be strange but I'm not malicious, so if I give offense please reconsider taking it. ;)

Reply

Self-sufficiency farmer with all sorts of all sorts, aiming to get more sorts of more sorts. Working on my own strains & breeds. 

Athlete, nerd, artist, gamer, writer, maker-of-stuff, perpetual student. Ignorance is not bliss, it's suffering! I may be strange but I'm not malicious, so if I give offense please reconsider taking it. ;)

Reply
post #5 of 7

Hi my chicken is making a very similar noise and I was wondering what happened with yours? Mine is happily foraging, drinking and laid an egg yesterday. Today is the first day of this constant noise.

post #6 of 7
Thread Starter 

I treated her like you would for an egg bound hen, and then the next day it seemed to stop.

30 minutes in warm water and olive oil in the vent.

 

She laid a few more eggs and then stopped about three months ago.  She would go around and forage, dust bath, eat, and drink....we culled her and found no yolks....I guess she was just an old hen I got from a feed store a year ago, but I did not know her age at the time.

 

Haven't had this problem with anyone since.

post #7 of 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by McGraw Farms View Post
 

I treated her like you would for an egg bound hen, and then the next day it seemed to stop.

30 minutes in warm water and olive oil in the vent.

 

She laid a few more eggs and then stopped about three months ago.  She would go around and forage, dust bath, eat, and drink....we culled her and found no yolks....I guess she was just an old hen I got from a feed store a year ago, but I did not know her age at the time.

 

Haven't had this problem with anyone since.

 

LOL! Well, that's interesting, thanks for sharing.

Self-sufficiency farmer with all sorts of all sorts, aiming to get more sorts of more sorts. Working on my own strains & breeds. 

Athlete, nerd, artist, gamer, writer, maker-of-stuff, perpetual student. Ignorance is not bliss, it's suffering! I may be strange but I'm not malicious, so if I give offense please reconsider taking it. ;)

Reply

Self-sufficiency farmer with all sorts of all sorts, aiming to get more sorts of more sorts. Working on my own strains & breeds. 

Athlete, nerd, artist, gamer, writer, maker-of-stuff, perpetual student. Ignorance is not bliss, it's suffering! I may be strange but I'm not malicious, so if I give offense please reconsider taking it. ;)

Reply
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