Chicken lost voice, wheezing, and gasping for breath. VIDEO ADDED

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by IkeO, Oct 14, 2016.

  1. IkeO

    IkeO Out Of The Brooder

    Mar 21, 2015
    Yesterday morning I came out to check on the chickens and heard one of my hens sneeze about 3 times. Then i noticed that she wasnt making any noise like the rest of the chickens. When i looked closer she had her mouth open (like she was hot) and i could hear her wheezing like breathing was difficult.

    I brought her in the house and have her in a crate with some food and water. I mixed in a little Rooster Booster Multi Wormer into her food and waiting to see if she gets worse/better.

    Its about 3 am and she does not look like she is doing well at all! She is really gasping/wheezing for breath now and her tail is down. I've looked down her through but I dont think i see much.

    I've looked all over the web but it doesnt seem like this is a spcific symptom. A lot of people suggest gapeworm.

    If you can, please help. Thanks.
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2016
  2. Venevee

    Venevee Out Of The Brooder

    Oct 12, 2016
    So sorry to hear about your hen.
    It sounds like she might have ate too much too fast. My hens have this problem sometimes, but not this severe. The best thing you can do right now is try to get her to drink water. If she is refusing to drink on her own, splash some water on her beak. If she still refuses, try to tube or syringe some water down. Don't let her eat anymore until she's had some water or shows signs of getting better.
    I hope she gets better!
  3. Sounds Respiratory too me...Which could be nutritional or a disease?
    If feeding them lots of treats? It is a nutritional issue....Lots of things come to mind....
    I will first hit on nutrition....Most common reason Backyard Chickens get sick....
    Laying hens need Layer pellets, Oyster shell and granite grit everyday....Treats only at 5% of daily ration...Meaning a Tablespoon each bird per day...Exercise is needed and stress to a minimum.......

    Healthy Chickens do not get sick...It takes a few weeks for Chickens to show symptoms of illness...

  4. IkeO

    IkeO Out Of The Brooder

    Mar 21, 2015
    Added Video of what she sounds/looks like. :(
  5. Wyorp Rock

    Wyorp Rock Flock Master

    Sep 20, 2015
    Southern N.C. Mountains
    I am assuming she is still doing this, since the video was just added.

    Re-check inside her beak to make sure she doesn't have some food/debris stuck in there.
    Does she still sneeze at all?
    How does her crop feel - gently massage downward.
    When was the last time she laid and egg?
    Is her abdomen swollen - feels fluid filled/bloated, hard, soft, normal?

    It's hard to tell exactly what is going on. It almost looks like stridor or some type of blockage in her windpipe.

    If she has a swollen abdomen (fluid filled) then she could be experiencing stress/breathing difficulty from internal laying/reproductive issues like Peritonitis, Ascites, cancer or tumors.

    Respiratory illness is always a possibility, something like Infectious Bronchitis, but you report no other symptoms, so I would look into a blockage first.

    It would be best to seek vet care if you have it available.

    Try to keep her hydrated the best you can.
  6. MrsBrooke

    MrsBrooke Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 11, 2014
    Magnolia, Texas

    If you suspect gapes, you can swab down her throat with a q-tip... You'll see little red strings if she's gaping.

    You can treat that with Valbazen goat wormer.

    Keep us posted!

    Last edited: Oct 14, 2016
  7. IkeO

    IkeO Out Of The Brooder

    Mar 21, 2015
    OK update:

    She, 'Waffles', seems to be improving! She is eating and drinking like normal. She is still inside and away from the flock. The only thing I've given her so far is 'Rooster Booster De-wormer + vitimans'. She is starting to get her voice back but it just sounds a little hoarse and weak. She is no longer doing what she was doing in the video but you can hear just a tiny bit of wheezing when she breaths. But overall it looks like she is getting over this. She also laid an egg this morning as I'm writing this. So that's a good sign, right?

    When I looked down her throat it looked normal to me.

    I'll keep monitoring her closely and update anything I notice.
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2016
  8. IkeO

    IkeO Out Of The Brooder

    Mar 21, 2015
    I will check for this as this seems to pop up as the symptoms for gapes alot. Thanks!

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by