Chicken breathing through mouth passed away


6 Years
May 22, 2013
Hello! We had a 3 year-old golden comet named Papaya. Last night she passed away, Before that we noticed her walking a little too slow. We picked her up and gave her water and olive oil. We brought her inside and she closed her eyes and she also couldn't stand up. She had a purplish black comb and wattle for quite some time and we put frostbite ointment on it and it seemed to help. She just lay there with her head back and breathing through her mouth.We gave her apple cider vinegar water and she opened her eyes and swung back her head. After a while she suddenly flapped her wings and fell of our lap. She flapped around on the ground for a few moments and then her heartbeat slowly stopped. We were just wondering whether anybody knew if she sounded like she had a specific disease. Thank you so much!
I am so sorry for your loss. It sounds as though she wasn't getting enough oxygen there at the end.

My advice is to consider worms, and mites/lice, as they can take a hen down right to death. I have seen purple combs and death with worms.

It could be other things too but I don't know-

so here is a general link with diagnosis charts at bottom:
Thank you so much for writing back so quickly. We will try to deworm our chickens. Is there a specific dewormer you would recommend? Thank you!
It could be many things and there's no way to know for sure without having a necropsy done. Anything would just be a guess. It could have been a respiratory disease, cancer or some other disease process that affected her heart/circulatory system etc. You also have to be extrememly careful giving birds anything orally so that they don't aspirate it into their lungs.

Edited to add: If you want to deworm, and it's a very good idea, Valbazen or Safeguard are excellent choices. Both are liquid (look for Safeguard for goats). Valbazen in particular is very safe, it does not result in a big worm kill off right away which can create blockages or dead worm toxicity for the bird, it works over a period of days and it's very effective. Give standard size birds 0.5 ml orally and repeat the dose in 10 days. Discard eggs until 10 days after the last dose.
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