Coccidiosis - Desperate - PLEASE help

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Brahmadarma, Oct 12, 2008.

  1. Brahmadarma

    Brahmadarma Songster

    Aug 13, 2008
    Is it possible that I can get a 7 wk old chick through this when she has been pooping blood ever since I got her. The whole flock has been treated with Sulmet and Amprolium.
    I isolated this one when she got the ruffled feathers, closed eyes look and made sure she got all the meds (in the feed as well). She made quite a recovery - started preening again, active, eating, even grew a bit.
    But she is still pooping blood. Can she possibly survive this?
    I am at my wits end and don't know what else to do. I don't want to lose her. I also don't want to keep giving antibiotics if its doing no good.
    Can anyone help?
  2. mypicklebird

    mypicklebird Songster

    Aug 8, 2008
    Sonoma Co, CA
    If she is still alive, that is a good sign. Do you know for sure they have coccidia (or she still has it) can you have a fecal sample checked by a vet to ID your problem?

    They have to develop immunity to the parasite. The sulfa drug and amprolium are stat drugs- they inhibit the coccidia from reproducing well, but do NOT kill the organism. The chicken with help of the stat drugs is supposed to have minimal signs once exposed to the organism from litter/dirt, and they develop immunity. It is in the dirt, and they will keep getting exposure- so it is essential that the chicken develop it's own resistance to the organism.

    You have this in your environment, so be sure to have all new chicks you introduce be on medicated start or the equivalent before exposure to the contaminated dirt.

    So all are better except this one, and they all were treated the same? It may not be cocci, or this specific bird may not be as hardy, or this bird may have something else wrong with it. What is your goal for this bird? Pet or primarily for eggs? If primarily for eggs, this is not a good long term prospect for a good producer, having such a hard time in it's first few months.

    If this is going to be primarily a pet, continue your supportive care- good nutrition, consider probiotics/vitamin additives, get a fecal done to see if there are a million coccidia there causing the clinical signs.

    If you are in a country that has the coccidiocidal drugs such as toltrazuril available- look into that, perhaps a vet might be able to rx a smaller amt compounded for a single individual.

    If you are in the US, marquis paste is in the same class, rx only, is being tried as a one day treatment for coccidia in small animals. It is a 'cidal' drug. It is off label for everyone except for horses. For this though, you will need both a willing vet to dilute it for you (it only comes in large tube of concentrated paste), and a fecal to back up the diagnosis.
  3. Brahmadarma

    Brahmadarma Songster

    Aug 13, 2008
    Thank you so much for all that. Yes I am thinking a fecal analysis is the way to go. I have been giving her yogurt all along as a probiotic.
    At the beginning there was more bloody poop so I assumed it was more than one bird. No others showed signs other than that though.
    I isolated her just to give her special attention, and when she improved I put her back in with the others, knowing that they had all been subjected to it anyway.
    For almost a week there was no sign of blood, then it reappeared, and as far as I know it is just her.
    I checked with the Amprolium vet rep. and he suggested a secondary infection of necrotic enteritis. She doesn't have diarrhea though. He also told me that they will develop immunity with Amprolium but not with Sulmet.
    I only have five birds, they are primarily pets but I will be eating the eggs. I don't care if this one is a poor layer, I just want her to live and be able to get the nutrients from her diet. It worries me that she has been bleeding for so long.
    Other than that she is doing quite well,smaller and scruffier than the others, but eats well and is just as active.
    So do you think she is past the danger now? Is there anything I can give her to help her get really strong?
    I will try to get a fecal analysis done tomorrow.
  4. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude

    Sulmet will continue intestinal bleeding beyond the actual cocci, I've been told by those in the know. I've had terrible issues with cocci this year, having to treat multiple times and I've heard that from so many people. Never had this happen before the groups of birds I hatched this year. They've always been on medicated feed. Makes me wonder if the entire poultry feed industry decided to forgo the meds and save $$$, OR maybe the Amprolium is defective, if that's even possible. I hope you find out the cause. Please let us know.
  5. spook

    spook Songster

    Apr 21, 2008
    North Central Florida
    Apparently cocci is even affecting some breeders that never allow their birds to touch the ground! Also a claim that an adult bird was affected with cocci.
    So yes, 7 week old birds can be affected. Now, I understand that once they have had cocci, they will test positive.
    I did use Sulmet on my birds that showed positive for cocci and it works well, but...if Speckledhen says use something different, use something different cause she is "in the know" loop too! [​IMG]
    I thought that I read through the Unicorn that Yogurt prevented Cocci....hmmm?

    Speck- I do agree with you. I was thinking that same thing and then wondered if it was the dirty feed. But that wouldn't affect us all acrossed the USA. Are they skimping on medication, bought cheaper meds for the use in starter feed that is not quality. Hmmm.
  6. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude

    Mine eat yogurt almost every day. For awhile, they had powdered nonfat milk in their starter, too. Milk products are an old remedy. Something is just very weird about all these cocci outbreaks when on medicated feed. I didnt have any trouble the first couple of years with cocci and now I have it with every group that hits the ground.

    Fenbendazole is an anti-protozoan (kills Giardia) and I was told that it may help with cocci in chickens, too, so I did dose a group who'd had Sulmet already (two rounds of Sulmet). It seemed to wipe it out for a long time. The dosing is a bit tricky for a chick, though. This is a very off-label use, but it may be better than losing chicks to this. Worth trying, IMO, but worming is hard on an adult bird, so it could be doubly hard on younger ones.
    Last edited: Oct 12, 2008
  7. Brahmadarma

    Brahmadarma Songster

    Aug 13, 2008
    That's interesting what you said Speckledhen - that Sulmet can cause bleeding beyond the actual infestation. I think that must be what this is. She was the only one that showed real signs other than the poop, it must have taken its toll on her whole system.
    Also, I believe Sulpher-based meds are harder on them. The Amprolium acted pretty quickly, I would recommend that first in future.
    So then tonight, when I was settling them in, she walked over to me and did a big brown and white poo! I nearly cried!
    I am going to stop all the medication now, not based on that, but its been two months now, they need a break.
    I am giving them pedialyte and polyvisol and yogurt to help them back to normal (hopefully).
    I appreciate the feedback and advice, I panic easily, I only have five and they are so precious!
  8. dlhunicorn

    dlhunicorn Human Encyclopedia

    Jan 11, 2007
    too little info ... have they been on the ground (and what were the conditions > damp etc) ...did you use medicated feed.... did this bird come from hatchery or did you hatch yourself? How are they housed? What is the weather like?

    Here is info on cocci (drugs and some good general info):
    (click on those pages to bring them up full screen)

    you MUST move the birds out of a known cocci problematic area (read above link and you will understand why) ... unless you can burn the ground and expose it to several weeks of full sunlight then moving is your only option as the basis for dealing with a long standing problem.
    Keep them away from damp or shaded areas.
    Keep young birds off the ground the first five weeks ( I have a paved patio area and I regularly drown it with ammonia > bleach and other "normal"disinfectants do nothing against cocci.

    Lastly cocci is not the only reason for blood.
  9. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude

    The only problem with moving them is that it's next to impossible for most. And how do you know where the cocci is? Could be everywhere on the property. You cannot treat what you cannot see on the grounds. If you have three chickens and a mobile coop, sure you can move them, but I have 50+ birds, permanent buildings and pens and they freerange part of every day (except the youngest ones). So moving is not an option for many people.
    Diana is very correct that cocci is not the only thing that can cause bloody poop. The next thing would be a heavy worm load, which fenbendazole will work on, though you dont want to use that on molting birds or you may get feather malformations; or necrotic enteritis (cocci gone overboard is what I think that is). And she is also correct, that bleach will not kill cocci, only ammonia will, a little known fact I found out in all my reading.
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2008
  10. Brahmadarma

    Brahmadarma Songster

    Aug 13, 2008
    Thank you Diana, that is very comprehensive information that you forwarded, I have to leave for work soon so will read it thoroughly later. You asked for more info so here goes:

    I constructed the coop and run on ground that wild quail and many other birds were regularly present on, in fact they used to dust bathe there. But this is true of all the land around here. I am in the Malibu hills, it is very dry.
    I had seven chicks that I also treated for cocci but they were all killed by my dog. They had only just started going out into the run at four weeks old.
    This next batch are all from the same local feed store who gets them from a hatchery, not sure which one.
    I cleaned the coop with bleach. Didn't do anything about the soil, understood they needed to build immunity from some contact, just not overload.
    Have always cleaned the coop out daily from the beginning, still do. They are on wire and newspaper so its easy to monitor the feces.
    Fed on medicated chick starter. First treated with Sulmet in water. One week off before starting with Amprolium. Followed directions and did full course with both. Went back to full strength Amprolium (on the advice of the Amprolium vet rep.) after one week of half strength because of the presence of blood.
    I have been feeding them yogurt daily.
    I have just stopped medicating and am adding Polyvisol and Pedialyte to the water.
    All the chicks (8 wks and one 4 wk old) appear healthy and active. But there is still blood in the poo, I think from just the one who is 8wks. and is smaller than the others.
    I have to leave now, but I will come back to this later.
    Thanks for your help.

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