Can’t identify this chicken illness! Help!

surprenant

In the Brooder
Mar 31, 2017
4
0
30
So my third chicken in two months is coming down with the same ailment. The first two didn’t make it :( . So the symptoms seem to go like this: First the chicken kind of separates itself from the others.. still acts pretty normal but definitely something is “off”. Next I notice them standing a little funny. Sort of upright or maybe just hunching their necks.. I thought eggbound? This does t seem to be it because according to what I’ve read an eggbound hen will die pretty fast and this is a two week illness. When I pick up the chicken sometimes fluid comes out of their mouth. It doesn’t smell bad. Is it sour crop? I give them vinegar in the water, and yogurt. Didn’t help! Also an odd symptom is sort of a head bobbing to the side.. they sort of do this ducking to the side with their head here and there..They just slowly stop eating and drinking and I end up just trying to get them to take water with electrolytes and probiotics and keep them comfortable. So my third chicken in weeks is starting with the same symptoms.. any ideas on what this ya and what I can do about it...
 

coach723

Free Ranging
7 Years
Feb 12, 2015
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North Florida
I'm very sorry for your losses. :hugs
It doesn't sound like eggbinding to me. They wouldn't last 2 weeks. There are so many possibilities that it's very hard to say. Since you have had so many with the same symptoms I would highly recommend that you have the third one necropsied if she dies. That is the only way to know for sure. It could be reproductive problems (how old are the birds?) or a virus, or a toxin, or a bacteria. It's just very hard to say. A bird that dies can have fluid come out of the mouth from the crop. Were they laying? Did you notice any bloating in the abdomens? Any respiratory symptoms like bubbling eyes, discharge from eyes/nares/beak, any lesions or plaques in the beak? Were droppings normal?
Here are some resources for necropsy, it really is the best way to know for sure.
https://www.metzerfarms.com/PoultryLabs.cfm
https://www.aphis.usda.gov/animal_health/nahln/downloads/all_nahln_lab_list.pdf
 

ChickenCanoe

Enabler
Premium Feather Member
11 Years
Nov 23, 2010
33,928
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St. Louis, MO
X2
It could be dozens of things. Likely a slowly progressing bacteria or a virus.
If she is getting very sick, the best tack would be to take her to your state poultry lab where they will humanely euthanize and run lab tests to find out what is killing these birds.
Without doing so, you will be guessing at best. You've already tried homeopathic remedies without knowing what the problem was. From now on, it is time to be proactive and find out exactly how to proceed. Some diseases, even slowly progressing ones, require removing all birds from the housing and leaving it vacant for up to 6 months or so. Some only require a medication (if it is bacterial) but not all bacterial infections have a cure. Most other things with those symptoms may not have a cure.
Find out what it is so you don't continue to lose birds.
What state are you in?
 

surprenant

In the Brooder
Mar 31, 2017
4
0
30
X2
It could be dozens of things. Likely a slowly progressing bacteria or a virus.
If she is getting very sick, the best tack would be to take her to your state poultry lab where they will humanely euthanize and run lab tests to find out what is killing these birds.
Without doing so, you will be guessing at best. You've already tried homeopathic remedies without knowing what the problem was. From now on, it is time to be proactive and find out exactly how to proceed. Some diseases, even slowly progressing ones, require removing all birds from the housing and leaving it vacant for up to 6 months or so. Some only require a medication (if it is bacterial) but not all bacterial infections have a cure. Most other things with those symptoms may not have a cure.
Find out what it is so you don't continue to lose birds.
What state are you in?
I’m in MA... and I have three baby chicks in my house in a brooder so I really need to figure this out! I have two healthy older chickens left that are just over three years old. I gave the coop a really good scrubbing a few weeks ago but I think I’ll do it again and rake out the run and put in new sand or chips.. it breaks my heart to see them sick :((
 

surprenant

In the Brooder
Mar 31, 2017
4
0
30
I'm very sorry for your losses. :hugs
It doesn't sound like eggbinding to me. They wouldn't last 2 weeks. There are so many possibilities that it's very hard to say. Since you have had so many with the same symptoms I would highly recommend that you have the third one necropsied if she dies. That is the only way to know for sure. It could be reproductive problems (how old are the birds?) or a virus, or a toxin, or a bacteria. It's just very hard to say. A bird that dies can have fluid come out of the mouth from the crop. Were they laying? Did you notice any bloating in the abdomens? Any respiratory symptoms like bubbling eyes, discharge from eyes/nares/beak, any lesions or plaques in the beak? Were droppings normal?
Here are some resources for necropsy, it really is the best way to know for sure.
https://www.metzerfarms.com/PoultryLabs.cfm
https://www.aphis.usda.gov/animal_health/nahln/downloads/all_nahln_lab_list.pdf
So I believe none of them were laying but now that you ask I have seen some funky shelless eggs but not for a few weeks..no respiratory symptoms at all droppings maybe some greenish and mushy under her roost and her butt was poopy yesterday and I lowered her into warm water to clean it .. it was mostly white .. she’s sleeping in the nest box tonight :( poor girl! Also I have to figure this out ASAP I have three four week old babies in a brooder in my house.. I need to clean my coop and run and make sure once my babies are out there that it’s safe for them. I also have two of my original girls left (3 yrs old) and I don’t want them to get sick! Thank you for the links I will look into that!!
 

ChickenCanoe

Enabler
Premium Feather Member
11 Years
Nov 23, 2010
33,928
29,746
1,117
St. Louis, MO
I’m in MA... and I have three baby chicks in my house in a brooder so I really need to figure this out! I have two healthy older chickens left that are just over three years old. I gave the coop a really good scrubbing a few weeks ago but I think I’ll do it again and rake out the run and put in new sand or chips.. it breaks my heart to see them sick :((
While it is good to maintain a clean coop, some pathogens can still survive a good cleaning.
Here are some contacts for testing.
https://www.mass.gov/state-public-health-laboratory-services
https://www.mass.gov/service-details/diagnostic-testing-services
 

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