4 week chicks with crusty swollen eyes with masses on eyes and mouth-pox??

Saramoore8311

Hatching
Aug 6, 2020
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I have 8 4 week old chicks in an isolated brooder by themselves outside in our barn. My other chickens have not had any contact with them, nor have they been on the ground yet. At least 3 of them have varied issues with their eyes. One is swollen and crusted over, and the the other side looks like the eye is gone as it’s recessed and crusted up around where it would be. Another has just a small small/bump above its eye, and another has a swollen/crust around its eye lids. Some have masses by their mouths. I’ve had chickens and chicks for 4 years but the only tine we had anything similar was when we first started with chickens. They were similar but not the exact same but some did lose eyes and some died. Those had a respiratory with pox that collided and just got super nasty but many had a clear infection (white) in their eyes. These do not. Is this just a really awful pox case? I don’t see runny noses, I hear no sneezing sounds, and our mosquitoes aren’t even bad yet. We’ve treated so far with tylosin in the water and terramycin on the eyes but not sure what else to try or if those will even help. Advice?
 

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Eggcessive

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Apr 3, 2011
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Where are you located? It sounds like you are in a region where fowl pox is a serious problem. There is a vaccine available in the future for any new chickens who have never been exposed, but it is not given until they are 8 weeks old.

There is dry fowl pox on the skin, comb, and face. Wet pox which is inside the beak and throat is much more deadly, and causes yellow plaques. When the eyes have dry pox scabs, it can be a set up for a secondary infection in the eyes. Antibiotic ointment applied to the eyes twice a day can be helpful.

Pox should go away in 3 weeks, but the dried up scabs can drop off and continue to infect other chickens. The main thing is to keep them eating and drinking, and watch for nostrils or eyes to become blocked. Normally you don’t want to disturb scabs, but if they are blocking an eye or nostril, I would remove it. Some use Betadine to paint on scabs not close to eyes to help clear it up. Chickens who recover should be immune to future outbreaks. Here is some reading about pox:
http://extension.msstate.edu/publications/fowl-pox-backyard-flocks
 

Saramoore8311

Hatching
Aug 6, 2020
2
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Thank you, felt pretty sure this was what it was. I’ve raised chickens for 4 years and it’s usually just the black scabs on the comb, maybe a small one by the eye and it’s never been a big issue. Why MIL just vaccinates hers for it and offered us the leftovers but I passed bc I knew ours were too young still And even when we don’t vaccinate it’s just never been this bad. We’re placated one south east Houston by the coast, but mosquitoes haven’t really been that bad yet. I’ll continue to treat the eyes then and see if the poor babies heal up in a few weeks. They’ve had it about a week so far. Thanks for the help!
 

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