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Chick acting odd

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by BackyardDove, Mar 24, 2016.

  1. BackyardDove

    BackyardDove Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 8, 2014
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    I have a Silkie chick that's almost 7 weeks old whose been acting odd lately. A few days ago, his buddy that he had been with since he was 2 weeks old died. I'm not entirely sure why he died, but I had been keeping the chicks on our covered porch and the day before he died, an unexpected wind storm/cold front hit overnight. It had been in the upper 80's for a while, so I felt it was safe to go ahead and put them outside so they'd stop stinking up the house. They still had a heat lamp at night, but I think the winds and sudden temperature drop weakened him too much. The Silkie chick was doing just fine, but later that day he started acting lethargic. I didn't think much of it, but the next day he was still lethargic, and I didn't feel any food in his stomach. I had taken them inside where it was warm to wait out the cold front, so I hadn't been using the heat lamp. I didn't know what else to do, so I put the heat lamp back on them, and he perked up a bit after that and started eating and drinking a bit. That was a couple days ago, and he's still acting lethargic and not eating as much as the others. He's a bit underweight and his stomach still isn't very full. The bulb on the heat lamp burnt out, so they haven't had a heat lamp on them, but he shouldn't need a direct heat lamp at 7 weeks when's he's inside and his cage is right next to another cage with a working heat lamp.


    If it's significant, I put him and the chick that later died in a cage with a few chicks I bought a couple weeks ago. These chicks are a couple weeks younger than he is, but they are all healthy looking, very active, eating normally, etc. The silkie's dropping are normal and there's nothing that physically tells me what might be wrong with him. If anybody can help, I'd really appreciate it!
     
  2. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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    It is hard to be certain, but coccidiosis could be a possible cause of death. Symptoms are lethargy, weakness, standing hunched, not eating, and runny droppings with mucus or blood. Corid liquid or powder added to the water for 5 days is the treatment. This is obtained in the cattle medicines of feed stores.
     
  3. BackyardDove

    BackyardDove Chillin' With My Peeps

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    No, I've dealt with coccidiosis before, this isn't it. The chick who died had absolutely no symptoms of sickness. And he hasn't been in a situation where he could've gotten coccidiosis, up until these past couple of weeks he's been in a cage with a wire bottom so the droppings can fall through. The cage he's in now also hasn't gotten nearly dirty enough to have coccidiosis build up to an unsafe level. He's also not acting weak, if you startle him, he will go running. He's just not jumping around and being as active as the others.
     
  4. BackyardDove

    BackyardDove Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Well, I suppose I can go ahead and treat him for coccidiosis. I realized that the last time some of my chickens got coccidiosis, they were all a lot older than 7 weeks. I also realized that the chickens who got coccidiosis were in the same cage as what he is in now, though that happened a couple years ago and I scrubbed down the cage with bleach. Still, I don't know why the others aren't showing symptoms, they're all younger and should be more susceptible than him. Should I also treat the chickens in the cage next to theirs? They are all 2 week old chicks and haven't come in contact with the other chickens, their cages are just right next to each other. And is it safe to treat for coccidiosis while deworming? The chicks are currently being treated with Wazine right now, since they don't eat medicated feed.
     
  5. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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    Chicks that young don't usually need worm treatment. I would wait until they are 3 months or older. Coccidiosis, however is pretty serious. Corid treatment in the water is pretty harmless to do. Since it is a thiamine inhibitor for the coccidia, and not an antibiotic, it won't harm any, but might save lives. I would treat with one thing first, and then give some vitamins and probiotics for a few days, then if you want to treat for worms, then do it separately.
     
  6. BackyardDove

    BackyardDove Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Yes, I started him on treatment earlier today. He had only been given Wazine for a day, I started them on it yesterday. Unfortunately I seem to have lost the Sulmet medication I used for my other chickens that got Coccidiosis a couple years ago, but I got another medication. I can't remember the name, I think it was something like Corid or Corad. Hopefully this is what's wrong and hopefully I'm not too late, one of the other chicks pushed him over earlier and he wasn't able to get up. I've since separated them and placed the other chicks in a different, clean cage. They aren't showing symptoms, but I'm going to start them on Coccidiosis treatment tomorrow anyways. I also have lots of vanilla yogurt, which worked really well as a probiotic last time.
     
  7. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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    Corid is really good since it treats all strains of cocci. Sulmet only treat the worst 2 strains. If you can get plain yogurt, there are more probiotics in it. There is quite a bit of sugar and vanilla in vanilla yogurt, and just a little yogurt. Good luck with the chickens.
     
  8. BackyardDove

    BackyardDove Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The worst 2? I thought it treated the two most common? Sulmet was all that was available in the town I live in, but Sulmet has been pulled from the shelves these past couple months, so now they have Corid. Oh yes, and I meant plain yogurt, not vanilla.
     
  9. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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    It treats the two worst strains which can be deadly. There are 9 or more strains, and the two or three worst ones are the killers. There have been warnings the last few years about taking many of the antibiotics and sulfa drugs out of feed stores to control antibiotic resistance in humans. I guess it is starting to happen already.
     
  10. BackyardDove

    BackyardDove Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I didn't know that. I suppose so, Corid is still around but Sulmet is nowhere to be found and there's no real reason why they pulled it from the shelves. The Silkie chick has been on the medication for a day now. It's still too early to tell if he'll get better, but he's at least not getting worse. I also found blood in the droppings of the chicks he was with, they're only a few weeks old so they shouldn't be shedding their intestinal lining or anything that would normally explain bloody droppings. I started them on medication today. I still don't really know how they could've gotten Coccidiosis, I cleaned that cage thoroughly with bleach. Plus, for most of his life, he was in a wire-bottomed cage, so he had limited contact with feces. It was only last week on Wednesday that I put him into a cage with shavings. And if that other chick died from Coccidiosis, that means they all got a terrible infestation of Coccidiosis in just a few days. Ever since my first Coccidiosis scare, I've been keeping things pretty clean, and though I was a little late cleaning their cage last time and the waterer dumped over once, I can't imagine them getting this sick over just that in such a short amount of time.

    Is it possible that the chicks I bought and put in with them made them sick? I thought they were perfectly healthy because they were the same age as the chick who died and so if they had a sickness they would've died quickly too, but maybe they had been exposed to increasing amounts of Coccidiosis over time, and though they were still sick, they built up enough of an immunity so that they didn't immediately die/show symptoms up until today? The chick who died was only four weeks old and had spent his entire life in a cage indoors, so he wouldn't of stood a chance against a high amount of Coccidiosis. But the Silkie chick spent his first few weeks of life outdoors with his mom, and probably had an somewhat of an immunity to some microorganisms like Coccidiosis.
     

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