The first time I had a sick chicken I realized INSTANTLY just how unprepared I was for this event!
1. I had been a chicken owner for 4 months
2. Spent months before I got my chickens reading library books
3. Spent 5 months on BYC reading anything and everything!
Then it happened. I went out to the coop for my normal routine and found one of my beloved birds in the "classic sick position", fluffed up, neck pulled in and one eye closed!
I new the next step was to put her in a separate cage, and I added a heat lamp above
She was fluffed up and would only eat very little out of my hand!
This story actually ended very well, and very quickly. As sick as she was acting by 8pm she was completely back to normal and was panicking that she couldn't go to roost with her coop mates. So I returned her to the roost and she settled down to sleep without the least further fuss. She never displayed signs of sickness again! A BYC member suggested that she had gotten her eye scratched! I had no idea they could react like that over such a "small thing".
What I realized is this:
1. I was unprepared for an emergency with my chickens!
2. I saw that this is how a member can panic and run to the BYC Emergency board with the title "HELP sick chicken!"
THIS IS FOR YOU! (AND ME!)
How To Be PreparedWhat items to have on hand:
is an effective treatment of surface wounds and abrasions. Antiseptic, fast-drying Blu-Kote is highly effective against pus-producing bacteria and common fungus infections. Penetrates to reduce pus formation and dry up secretions of pox-like lesions.Blu-Kote Aerosol
**The other important part of this stuff is it coats the part of the injured chicken in BLUE so that they don't get pecked at on their red, bloody injured area. VERY IMPORTANT, wear gloves and apply this outside! You don't want to get it on your hands or your counters...don't ask me how I know!
Vitamins and Electrolytes are very good to have on hand! This is something you can use at the first sign that your chicken is unwell. This will be the first thing most members will use while they investigate to see what is wrong.
WHAT I AM ABOUT TO SAY IS THE VERY REASON I AM WRITING THIS ARTICLE!! BE PREPARED!
So you realize that you have a coccidiosis outbreak in your coop! Do you have CORID on hand? (Or Sulmet) How much do you give? Do you want to spend hours trying to figure it out or do you want to have it NOW? Another knowledgeable BYC member or an internet search suggests that your chicken should be on antibiotics...now what? Most of these treatments we use on chickens are made for large barnyard animals and the dosing on the packaging are for very large volumes. Other members here have done the research and the math so you don't have to guess!
(BIG THANKS to casportpony for creating these very helpful threads!)
What I have done here is taken this information and copied the dosing down right on my packaging! No panicking looking for threads or posting, no searching for a piece of paper I have written it down on, I have it handy when the need arises!
I suggest doing this for all the medicines you have on hand. Be prepared! *Put some clear tape over where you write your instructions so they don't get smeared off by moisture.