Chickens not laying have been sick

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Mo Chicken Mom, Oct 24, 2014.

  1. Mo Chicken Mom

    Mo Chicken Mom New Egg

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    I left town for a weekend and it rained the entire time. My kids were watching our animals and I came home to sick/dying chickens. They got sick from wet food, muddy water, and cold wet conditions in general. I lost 3 of 23 chickens within 24 hours of being home. I called the vet and they were put on sulfadimethoxine for 5 days.The rest survived and are looking good and acting normal again. I have not gotten more than 2 eggs since. Is there any hope for my girls? How long should I wait to find out? Is there anything else I can do to help them recover?
     
  2. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

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    [​IMG] Egg production generally drops off this time of year because of shortening day length. This added to all the stresses that your hens suffered has caused the drop off in egg production. They will lay again, but may wait until spring depending upon their breed, age, and the degrtee to which they were impacted by this unfortunate situation. Just keep them clean, dry, and provided with lots of feed.
     
  3. Ol Grey Mare

    Ol Grey Mare One egg shy of a full carton. ..... Premium Member

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    Hi and welcome -though sorry under these circumstances.
    When your birds might return to production will depend on a few factors. How long has it been since this occurred? You have mentioned the length of treatment but not really a time frame in which this has all taken place - so if it's been just a week or two that's a different scenario than had it been a month or two ago that this all started. Are they first year pullets more likely to run through this first winter or are they older laying hens who would have been more likely to lay off a bit for the winter anyway? Wet food and muddy water really aren't likely to cause the sort of outbreak you saw - did your vet offer a specific diagnosis to pinpoint just what illness you were dealing with (another thing that will factor into total recovery)? What specific symptoms did the birds exhibit?
    At this point, if the birds are no longer symptomatic and just in the recovery phase the best thing for you to do is to support that by providing the best conditions for them and allow their bodies to do the work.
     
  4. Mo Chicken Mom

    Mo Chicken Mom New Egg

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    They are first year pullets, we were getting between 16-18 eggs per day until last weekend when they got sick now, 0-2. I believe the diagnosis was possible cocci he did not do any tests just went on symptoms. They had discolor/pale combs, lesions, ruffled feathers with a lack of shine, lethargic, and not eating well. It is apparently common in our area with wet conditions. We ended medication about 24-36 hours ago. I was just wondering how long I should give them before I should expect to get eggs again and if there is anything I should do to help them recover. I switched their food to one with a probiotic and added organic minerals. I know the days are getting shorter but we did put a light in the coop. They are eating better but still not as good as before. I was giving them fresh garden veggies all summer but the garden is down to just peppers and they do get bells for added vitamin C.
     
  5. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

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    The switching of feed is another factor that has probably added to the drop in production.
     
  6. Cindy in PA

    Cindy in PA Overrun With Chickens

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    These chickens got into this shape in one weekend?? Never seen that happen. Food doesn't get wet if it's in the coop. As far as muddy water, I've never found a way to keep chickens from drinking out of puddles.
     
  7. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    What kind of lesions and where on the bird were they? Where they only on the dead/dying birds?
    Any pics might be helpful. Did your vet suggest a necropsy?

    I too would question that this could happen so quickly...where are you located?
    Could be that they were already carrying an infection and the degradation of their environment caused enough stress that the infection overwhelmed them.
    Or there could have been another stress factor such as a predator attack?

    The light in the coop can take some time(up to 6 weeks) to have an effect.
     

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