Chicken sneezing, scratching face, breathing with mouth open


Jun 9, 2017
6-month old, Wyandotte/barnyard cross. She seems well enough during the day - maybe a tiny bit sick looking, but it’s so slight that I may just be paranoid. But during the night while on the roost all her symptoms come out. She scratches her face a lot to the point where she’s created a sore or two. She breathes through her mouth and sneezes a fair bit.
The thing is, I’ve either had terrible luck or I’m doing something seriously wrong beyond my knowledge - but some of my other girls seem a bit under the weather, but with pretty different symptoms. I’ve taken one of them to the vet before for what she had and it turned out to be a mild respiratory infection. I guess it’s making a second round. But either way it’s not showing the same way in her then it is in the fee others that have symptoms. I’m worried it’s the same illness that another chicken I had died from - but the only matching symptom is the open mouth breathing. That chicken never got diagnosed but in autopsy I found a black lump in her throat.
I’m thinking of taking her to the vet. For now I’m giving her VetRX at night and putting apple cider vinegar in the water. Thanks for any help


Premium Feather Member
11 Years
Apr 3, 2011
southern Ohio
Sorry about your chicken. It sounds like you have a chronic respiratory disease in your flock, such as MG, that comes and goes. Stress can bring it on, but the original sickness was brought into your flock by exposure to a carrier. Birds with MG are carriers for life, and the other birds exposed may be as well. Did you get your birds from the same place?

Are you seeing any eye watering, bubbles or foam, or nasal drainage? Is there any head shaking? Cleaning the eyes (if watery or crusted) with saline or water, and applying some antibiotic ointment to the eye twice a day is helpful. Tylan 50 injectable given ORALLY 2-3 times a day for 5 days can help treat symptoms of MG. Dosage is 1/4 ml per pound of weight.Remove the needle from the syringe to give the medicine a drop at a time, then let them swallow. It is found in feed stores in the cattle medicines.
Here is a good link to read: Mycoplasma gallisepticum (MG) Infecti....pdf

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