2nd sick (lethargic) hen after introducing new ones

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by SF Chick, Mar 9, 2012.

  1. SF Chick

    SF Chick Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 17, 2009
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    Two months ago we got 2 pullets to add to our flock of 3 hens, aged almost 3 years. We quarantined the new ones for 4 weeks, so they've been integrated for over a month. 2 weeks ago one of the older hens got a droopy comb and was acting lethargic, including sitting in the nesting box for hours. I didn't see mites, she was breathing OK, her crop was fine, eyes clear, poops looked normal (although I couldn't tell which were hers). She had been laying frequent soft-shelled eggs for the prior few weeks. I felt inside her and found an egg (hard shelled) and followed instructions for egg bound chickens, but she died within 48 hours. I concluded she had a reproductive problem/infection.

    Now Cleo, another of the older hens, is acting sick. She is lethargic and went into the coop to roost in the afternoon. I have isolated her. I haven't examined her closely (it's dark now), but does anyone have any suggestions of what to look for or do, assuming she has whatever the other chicken had? Could the new chickens have brought something in, despite being quarantined earlier and seeming healthy?
     
  2. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble

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    Inspect her for lice/mites. Your birds may also need to be wormed if you havnt done so.
     
  3. SF Chick

    SF Chick Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 17, 2009
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    She is very sick this morning. She won't eat or drink. I don't see lice or mites. Her poop is green, I don't see any worms in it, and she spit out some green watery stuff too. Advice??
     
  4. chickenzoo

    chickenzoo Emu Hugger

    What does her crop feel like, is it emptying normally, any smell from her mouth? They don't have to have worms in heir poo for them to have worms. I would give her a very small dose of Safeguard liquid wormer for goats. If you can only find horse paste use about half a pea size dollop on your finger and wipe into her mouth every other day for three days. Add vitamins to her water. Keep her warm with a light as she can't keep her own body temp well. If she won't drnk try watering down any food you can get in, if nothing then you can mix a vitamin water mix and using a syringe inject three CDs under the skin. Do that every few hours to help hydrate her. You can try putting scrambled egg in her mouth.

    If her crop is not emptying you will need to give apple cider vinegar and olive oil etc...and massage the crop to see if you can get it to empty properly again.
     
  5. klmclain1

    klmclain1 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 14, 2011
    someone correct me if I'm wrong... it's my understanding that green poop means nothing is being digested. How does her crop feel? Is she eating anything? As a last ditch effort, I'd worm her (and all the others) with Valbazen NOW, put ACV in her water, give her some high protein food like canned cat food, AND give her vitamins. If you determine there's a crop issue - give her some olive oil and massage her crop. I'm really suspicious that there's a crop issue with the green poop/spitup.
     
  6. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    Feb 2, 2009
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    That is a hard one. It could be something totally unrelated to the new chickens. Maybe they are finding some moldy food? Maybe they found some tacks or screws and have punctured their gizzard when trying to grind them up. Maybe a wild bird brought in a disease. I really don't know.

    It is possible that the two pullets you brought in had a disease they can transmit, but they themselves have an immunity to it. If they have an immunity, it does not matter how long you quarantine them, you won't see evidence. That's why I think a more effective quarantine includes putting a possibly sacrificial member of your flock in with them to see if either flock has a disease they are immune to but can transmit.

    I'm not anywhere as good with diseases as many others on this forum so I won't address possible treatment.

    Good luck!
     
  7. SF Chick

    SF Chick Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 17, 2009
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    Thank you for the advice. Crop still seems empty, no smell from her mouth but her poop is still green and very smelly, and she makes sick little sounds. Our feed store has very limited supplies (now I know to order them and have them on hand). I bought Sav-a-Chick and fed 10cc into her beak through a syringe. She won't eat or drink on her own, and I can't get the scrambled egg in her beak. I bought Wazine, the only dewormer the store had, but I'm reluctant to use it because it says it's only for roundworms. Could worms cause a chicken to decline this quickly (the one who died 2 weeks ago also went very fast)? The store also sold me tetracycline hydrochloride. I don't know if there's any point in throwing meds at her now without knowing what's going. I'm thinking I'll order Valbazen for the remaining chickens. By the way, I always put ACV in their water.

    I appreciate all your ideas.
     
  8. chickenzoo

    chickenzoo Emu Hugger

    Worms can bring them down very fast, because you don't see it happening or often notice the small changes that happen... It can go on for weeks before all of a sudden the bird acts sick. New birds bring in new worms too... Their are many difference kinds of worms... You don't need to see them in poo for them to have them. Safeguard paste is what I use on very sick birds, just a pea sized dollop in the mouth every other day for three does on very thin birds.... As you don't want the worms to die all at once. Repeat in fourtenn.

    Also if she has an infection..... Treat with an antibiotic. With chickens it is often a guessing game, you get to know the symptoms over time.

    I treat with the simplest and less expensive treatments first that are often seen, then move on to the less often seen ones.
     
  9. SF Chick

    SF Chick Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 17, 2009
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    A friend suggested coccidiosis because of how quickly both hens declined, but there has been no bloody poop. Is that still a possibility?
     
  10. chickenzoo

    chickenzoo Emu Hugger

    It's possible , as the new birds could have brought in a different type but usually older birds dont get it as easily. Giving Corid wouldn't hurt her..... But I would worm as well as give an antibiotic as well.
     

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