Bloody droppings, two negative fecal floats. Next steps?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by fowlpun, Dec 30, 2014.

  1. fowlpun

    fowlpun Hatching

    Jun 18, 2013
    Hi there,

    I've done a ton of searching online and on the forums. I spoke to one of the state poultry inspectors, but I figured I would ask here too.

    Here's what is going on:

    I have three birds. One is an older (about 3 years) Red Star that finished going through a molt towards the end of Thanksgiving. The other two are Easter Eggers and this is their first winter. One Easter Egger is still laying, the other two birds are not laying currently. I am supplementing their coop with light from 4AM-10AM each day.

    The Red Star and one of the Easter Eggers have had bloody droppings off and on for the last 6 or so weeks.

    I keep things clean, the chickens have adequate coop and run space, and have occasional free-range time in my side yard. Roughly once a month I add apple cider vinegar to their water for a few days followed up by probiotic. I have been adding probiotics to their waterer regularly over the last couple of months.

    I've brought two fecal samples (a couple of weeks apart) into my local vet that have been tested for parasites (I confirmed that they are testing for cocci among all the other common worms/etc.), both tests have come back negative.

    I have seen intestinal lining passed in droppings before, it's most definitely blood, and not lining.

    Other than the lack of egg laying and bloody droppings, the only other noticeable symptom is pale combs (not super pale, but not bright red as they often are). All three birds are active and eating/drinking well.

    If it's not a parasite, my thoughts would be that it may be something bacterial. I'm not a huge fan of giving antibiotics to the chickens without knowing specifically what's wrong (I don't want to kill off beneficial bacteria in their systems), but I am concerned that I may lose the birds if I do not take additional action.

    Thank you for any thoughts you may have about the best way to proceed!

    tl;dr bloody droppings, negative fecal float. Since it's not cocci, what could be wrong?
  2. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Crossing the Road

    Apr 3, 2011
    southern Ohio
    Welcome to BYC. There can several problems that cause blood in the droppings--coccidiosis, capillaria worms, and enteritis. There are probably more reasons, but those are common. I think I would not believe the fecal results if they came back negative for cocci and worms. If I were you I would give them a 5 day course of Corid (amprollium) in their water to treat for cocci. Corid is not an antibiotic, but a thiamine inhibitor, and won't harm them at all. Then I would give them Valbazen 1/2 ml orally to each bird, and repeat that in 10 days. If you still see blood in the droppings afterward, then I would treat them with either Tylan, amoxicillin, or chlortetracycline, which ARE antibiotics that are commonly used to treat enteritis caused by clostridium perfringens in the soil. Here is a link about enteritis:
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2014
    1 person likes this.
  3. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble

    Nov 27, 2008
    Jacksonville, Florida
    Sometimes fecal float tests arnt reliable/accurate. I recommend that you follow the treatment regimen that Eggcessive suggested.
  4. fowlpun

    fowlpun Hatching

    Jun 18, 2013
    Thanks for the replies, I'll update with progress. Have a good holiday!

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by: