Breathing Issues... Possibly egg bound?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Vermont Poultry, Jan 31, 2017.

  1. Vermont Poultry

    Vermont Poultry Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 22, 2016
    Northern Vermont
    A couple of days ago I noticed one of the GLW pullets making strange noises, I passed it off because I though it was because she was upset at me for being near the nesting boxes. until the next day she made the same noise almost 24/7. It sounds like a owl howling and a weird off sounding purr. I forgot about her making the noises so I spent 5 minutes looking around the coop for an owl or wild bird, then to realize it was a chicken. I once again passed it off as just a weird chicken thing and another day went by. Today she made the noise all morning and afternoon. I was a bit curious as too why she making those noises but was busy doing other things so I forgot about it until about an hour ago, when she seemed to have a hard time breathing, and when she would make the noise she made it whenever she inhaled and exhaled, and she was breathing through her beak.

    Possible explanations/culprits:

    1. Oyster shells... Yesterday I refilled their metal container of oyster shells, they had been without it for a few days so they immediately devoured the shells, so fast in fact that the chicken with the breathing issues threw some of it back up and would make weird dinosaur noises while doing so. They ate all of what was in the container (the cups holds about 2 cups of shells) so I refilled it again and they ate a little bit from that. When I felt the pullet's crop it was very hard (which is not unusual, it seems common for them to have a hard crop and it go away), but maybe the oyster shell was clogged? I don't think this is likely because I just today refilled their shells, and the breathing issue started 2-3 days ago.

    2. Egg bound... Checked the inside of the chickens mouth and throat, their was a piece of pine shaving on the back of her mouth but it was not in the way of her "vocals" or opening to her trachea. I felt her abdomen and there definitely is an egg in her, but it is not near the vent and highly doubt this is the issue because there is no issue with the vent and I believe she has laid since she started the noises.

    3. Lung infection/ other respiratory illness... I think this is the most likely cause, she has many symptoms that would help conclude this idea. For example, the breathing issue progressed over time, strange noises, labored breathing. I would not want it to be this cause then there is a fair chance other chickens may contract this, but at the same time being egg bound seems worse.

    I would greatly appreciate health advice to help this chicken, preferably from someone with experience and not someone who just wants to respond.

    Additional information
    -My climate (Low 20s to Mid 30s low humidity)
    -Coop Size (8'x8', paddock/ occasional free range, guineas live separate most of the time)
    -Birds (15 pullets, 1 cockerel, 6 guinea fowl all 6-7 months)
    -Currently we have at least 2-4 inches of snow
    -Coop is moderately ventilated.
    -Bedding is often moist, today it was dry
     
  2. MasterOfClucker

    MasterOfClucker Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Can you post a video?
     
  3. Vermont Poultry

    Vermont Poultry Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 22, 2016
    Northern Vermont
    [​IMG]
    The sound is very faint compared to earlier, she is relaxed so she is not stressing her lungs. It sounds like me breathing through my nose at first but it is actually the bird. At the end you can hear it better. Sorry for the bad quality and audio my phones camera is partially broke.
     
  4. MasterOfClucker

    MasterOfClucker Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 19, 2016
    Iowa
    Pretty hen.Try doing it tomorrow when she is alert.Hens will make a lot of sounds when they are confined in small space due to the snow.Her comb is fairly red which means there is good circulation to her head.I have hens that make weird noises when confined,I actually have one that makes really weird gasping/noise and she is fine(Only does this when confined).The noise at the end is just a chicken mad because they are confined.All chickens will express there feelings via mouth.Try letting her out in the snow today just put straw on top of it and they will go out if the noises persist i would contact a vet.There are a few avian vets in vermont.If you cant find/get to a vet it would be best to separate her from the flock and put her in a small dog kennel in a warm environment and provide her eggs and tuna often.Can you open her mouth and check for any abnormality's?I know its pretty hard to do a towel will help.Decreasing dust in the coop as well as providing moderate ventilation will help too.
     
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2017
  5. Vermont Poultry

    Vermont Poultry Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 22, 2016
    Northern Vermont
    Definitely has gotten worse, we brought her inside and I checked her throat before I brought her in and it looked fine, didn't see blockages or redness/swelling. She is breathing very hard and her abdomen contracts quite significantly when she breaths. She is making the same noises as in the coop just louder. It sounds as if she is about to suffocate but when I let her walk around in the basement she acts like a normal chicken. But she is eating and I think drinking less which can be because she is separate from the other chickens, her poop is greenish and very watery. I put 2 eggs in a box cause she likes to sit on them and act broody for a couple hours every day, but then stops suddenly. There is this weird kind of clicking noise coming from around her abdomen area. The other chickens outside don't seem to happy, yesterday afternoon 2 o' clock approximately we took her out of the coop, and today we only got 6 or 7 eggs from 14 chickens (excluding the sick one and the rooster)... We have never gotten that low of a number since they first started laying, we get at least 12 on a low day, and we average about 13-14 eggs a day. Did they stop laying because we took her out? P.S the eggs we did get were oddly all in one box and a broody hen has confiscated them.
     
  6. MasterOfClucker

    MasterOfClucker Chillin' With My Peeps

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    When was the last time she laided a egg?
     
  7. Vermont Poultry

    Vermont Poultry Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 22, 2016
    Northern Vermont
    Yesterday morning, She has not laid since. She did sit on a couple eggs I put in a cardboard box but then got bored. I'm thinking its air sack mites. I was told if you hear a clicking noise in their internals that mites could be the case.
     
  8. MasterOfClucker

    MasterOfClucker Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 19, 2016
    Iowa
    Can you take her to a vet?Many diseases can cause labored breathing.
     
    Last edited: Feb 2, 2017
  9. Vermont Poultry

    Vermont Poultry Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 22, 2016
    Northern Vermont
    Not sure if there is an avian vet in our area. Tight on money too so we will see. Hopefully we can get her to a vet though.
     

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