Chicken sneezing, conjunctivitis

cousin_okri

Hatching
Mar 31, 2020
3
0
9
Hello everyone,

I'm sorry I didn't have time to introduce myself properly to the community, I'm planning to do it a bit later. I am a beginner in caring for chicks, it's my 1st time I own any birds.
I'm asking for a professional piece of advice or any help to determine type of disease which struck my Plymouthrock chickens (unvaccinated).
Around 10 days ago I bought 5 new 4-month old chicks (Czech dominants) to my coop and put them on quarantine for a week, they all looked healthy and active. New chicks were vaccinated (the previous owner told me). I put them in a coop, they were separated from my flock with a grid to avoid pecking.
The situation happened three days ago, the weather was nasty for many days (around 55 F*) and it poured cats and dogs.
One of my Plymouthrock chickens (2 m.o.) showed symptoms (had a swelling around one eye) and was starting to cough. I isolated it immediately to a special "infirmary cage", but others three showed the same symptoms within next 2 days so I brought them all back to the main coop as there was no point in keeping one away from the flock if they were all ill. New chickens had no changes in behavior and were all healthy (and still).
They are rather active, eat and drink almost as usual. Here's a link to the video, as you can see one of them seems to be recovering (or I may be wrong), the others are a bit sad (sorry for the Russian language, I made this video for my friend)

You might say, I should have consulted a vet right away but unfortunately there are no vets specialized on poultry in my area. Private farming is undeveloped here where I live (Moscow region, Russia). I wonder if poultry vets even exist here. Maybe large industrial poultry farms have vets but they provide no service to private individuals (no vaccines as well). I browsed Russian forums and found out, a chicken's life is hard and short if it gets ill: most people just cull it and get a new one. I don't want such fate for my flock as I do love animals and don't treat chicks as running bags of eggs and meat.

Plymothrocks seem to be suffering from laringotraqueitis (I looked through some articles). I suppose the infection might come from vaccinated dominants but I'm not sure as I have no experience. It means I made a mistake putting them together but they would contact with each other one day anyway.

I'm worried for my chicks because I raised them from an egg and became quite attached. If anyone can help me I would be very grateful.
 

Eggcessive

Addict
Premium Feather Member
10 Years
Apr 3, 2011
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southern Ohio
You probably have a respiratory disease that has been brought into your previous chickens by one of the new pullets. The two diseases that cause swollen eye and sneezing are mycoplasma gallisepticum ((MG,) and coryza. Coryza may have a bad odor from the beak. Unless you are seeing blood-tinged mucus coming from the beak and nostrils, I do not think your are dealing with LT or ILT. You probably should close your whole flock to new birds, until the last one is gone, hopefully years from now. If you can obtain an antibiotic, such as Tylosin, Tiamulin, or Enrofloxacin, those would treat MG. Or you could kill any sick birds, but there may be more. Make sure chickens are drinking enough water.

It only takes a week or more for a carrier to spread a respiratory disease. Those carriers may not show any symptoms. Respiratory diseases are chronic, and may come back again. All survivors and flock members would need to be considered as carriers. You may treat the eyes by cleaning with saline, and applying an antibiotic ointment or eyedrop twice daily. If pus occurs in the eyes, sometimes that may need to be squeezed out or removed. I hope that you can help your flock.
 

cousin_okri

Hatching
Mar 31, 2020
3
0
9
You probably have a respiratory disease that has been brought into your previous chickens by one of the new pullets. The two diseases that cause swollen eye and sneezing are mycoplasma gallisepticum ((MG,) and coryza. Coryza may have a bad odor from the beak. Unless you are seeing blood-tinged mucus coming from the beak and nostrils, I do not think your are dealing with LT or ILT. You probably should close your whole flock to new birds, until the last one is gone, hopefully years from now. If you can obtain an antibiotic, such as Tylosin, Tiamulin, or Enrofloxacin, those would treat MG. Or you could kill any sick birds, but there may be more. Make sure chickens are drinking enough water.

It only takes a week or more for a carrier to spread a respiratory disease. Those carriers may not show any symptoms. Respiratory diseases are chronic, and may come back again. All survivors and flock members would need to be considered as carriers. You may treat the eyes by cleaning with saline, and applying an antibiotic ointment or eyedrop twice daily. If pus occurs in the eyes, sometimes that may need to be squeezed out or removed. I hope that you can help your flock.

Thank you! I forgot to mention that I noticed one of chicks had bloody mucus on its beak during 1st day, then it disappeared but coughing remained. I have Enrofloxacin in my pet medkit and will apply it immediately.

Does it mean that any future offspring from carrier-birds will get sick and will also be chronically infected? Or do they develop immunity?
 

Eggcessive

Addict
Premium Feather Member
10 Years
Apr 3, 2011
59,696
51,441
1,302
southern Ohio
Mycoplasma (MG) does pass through hatching eggs. Any chicks added to the flock can become exposed and be sick or become carriers as well. It can vary with flocks how many will become sick. Some may be resistant but still carry the disease, and continue to spread it their whole lives. Once all chickens are gone from the flock, you can wait a couple of weeks, and add new birds without it spreading. MG is only alive in the environment for about 3 days once chickens are gone. ILT may last a few weeks in the environment. ILT is a virus and will not respond to antibiotics, but MG will.
 

cousin_okri

Hatching
Mar 31, 2020
3
0
9
Mycoplasma (MG) does pass through hatching eggs. Any chicks added to the flock can become exposed and be sick or become carriers as well. It can vary with flocks how many will become sick. Some may be resistant but still carry the disease, and continue to spread it their whole lives. Once all chickens are gone from the flock, you can wait a couple of weeks, and add new birds without it spreading. MG is only alive in the environment for about 3 days once chickens are gone. ILT may last a few weeks in the environment. ILT is a virus and will not respond to antibiotics, but MG will.
Thank you very much for your help!
 

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