Bloody stools in the coop--- what to do??

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by DesertSilkieHen, Jan 8, 2016.

  1. DesertSilkieHen

    DesertSilkieHen Out Of The Brooder

    Oct 21, 2015
    Tucson, Arizona
    This evening I noticed a few bloody stools in my chicken coop and don’t know what’s wrong and how best to treat it. I have five 12-14 week old silkies in a 50 sq ft coop on pine shavings. They’re all acting normally and have healthy appetites. One, Ty, has been on the thin side and has lost a little weight recently (and is perhaps the most food-motivated) so I figured she had worms and was going to start them all on a feed store dewormer this weekend. In the past two days they’ve had continual access to water and been fed medicated grower mixed with layer, tomato, lettuce, seedless red grapes, plain yogurt on bread, meal worms and a new poultry seed mix (pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, dried raisins, dried beets, dried broccoli). None of them have been vaccinated for cocci. They went on a road trip five days ago when I was coming back from winter break, which could have been stressful.
    I’ve brought them all inside into my warm house and am putting sanitary pads on them to determine which one has bloody stools but don't know what to do next. Are bloody stools (soft but not diarrhea) sufficiently urgent to warrant a Saturday trip to a vet? If so, do I bring multiple chickens? I once brought a lone chicken with a leg injury to the vet, only to have her die from the stress, so I’m worried about doing more harm than good. What's likely to be the problem and what (apart from potentially taking them to the vet) should I do?
    Also, if it's cocci, which I'm worried about, should I take them to a 24 hour vet tonight or wait till the morning? Or can I treat it at home?
    Last edited: Jan 8, 2016
  2. Wyorp Rock

    Wyorp Rock Flock Master

    Sep 20, 2015
    Southern N.C. Mountains
    Can you post a picture? Could the treats possibly be tinting the poo with a red color?(Tomatoes, red grapes, raisins, dried beets)?
    You have them on a mix of medicated chick starter and layer feed. Are any of them laying?
    If you decide you need to treat for cocci and treat with corid, you will most likely need to stop the medicated feed (look at your label on the feed bag, it will tell you) and just feed regular chick starter.
    IMO if they are not laying yet, I would just feed chick starter or an all flock type feed. Also, limit treats to no more than10% of their daily intake. Layer feed does not have enough protein for growing chicks.

    Also here is a poo chart to help you determine what is going on.
  3. Wishing4Wings

    Wishing4Wings Isn't it Amazing?

    May 7, 2012
    Sonoma County, CA
    I am not an expert, but have done lots of reading on coccidiosis. First, if your chicks are active and eating, they likely do NOT have coccidiosis, at least not an advanced case. A chick with the problem will be very lethargic, often standing with feathers poofed (hard to tell on a Silkie!) and disinterested in food. This is a telltale sign regardless of whether you see blood in the stool. Treatment is Corid (Amprolium) in the drinking water, which you can get at the feed store. If one has symptoms, you should treat the whole flock.

    Since your birds are getting medicated feed, cocci should not be a worry. Could the beets, tomatoes, or grape skins be part of what you are seeing? I fed mine blueberries and saw poo in brilliant shades of green and blue the next day! At their age, they should be done getting the medicated feed. Also, hold off on layer feed until they are actually laying. The extra calcium can stress the organs.

    What you might be seeing is a natural sloughing off of intestinal lining that is frequently seen in poop. Do a quick google search of "bloody chicken poop" and compare the pics with what you have. If you are seeing lots what is unmistakably blood, then they are probably overloaded with cocci and need the Corid. You can take a fresh poo sample to the vet, and they can perform a float test to see if cocci are present.

    There is no vaccine for cocci. It is naturally in the environment and healthy chickens can handle it in small doses without ill effects.

    You don't need to worm them unless they have worms. Again, this can be determined by taking some fresh poop to a vet for a float test, and they will look for worm eggs. They can even tell you the type of worm so you can get the appropriate wormer, if needed.

    Their behavior is one of the best indicators of health. Watch for signs, that will be very subtle, as birds always try to mask an injury or illness. Most of the time, when people notice there is something wrong, the problem is quite advanced. Also, watch the one you think is losing weight. It might be worms or it might be that she is low on the pecking order and not getting access to the food.

    Good luck!

    Wyorp Rock posted just as I was finishing up, so sorry if some of the info is repeated!
    1 person likes this.
  4. casportpony

    casportpony Team Tube Feeding Captain & Poop Inspector General Premium Member Project Manager

    Jun 24, 2012
    My Coop
    Can you post some poop pictures? -Kathy
  5. casportpony

    casportpony Team Tube Feeding Captain & Poop Inspector General Premium Member Project Manager

    Jun 24, 2012
    My Coop
    If you do decide to treat with Corid, 20% powder dose is 1.5 teaspoons per gallon for 5 days, then 1/3 teaspoon per gallon for 7-14 days. The 9.6% liquid dose is 2 teaspoons per gallon for 5 days, then 1/2 teaspoon per gallon for 7-14 days.


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