Cough amongst chickens -no other signs, but I am going out of town...

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Sussquires, Feb 13, 2017.

  1. Sussquires

    Sussquires New Egg

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    Sep 28, 2015
    I have noticed my chickens coughing - 9 girls, about 4 or 5 coughs in about a half hour. I don't notice anything terribly amiss - they are not lethargic, their eyes seem bright and I don't notice any nasal discharge. I am mostly concerned because I have to be away for 10 days later this week. They are all about 9 months old, except 1 who is 1 year and 9 months. They have been together for 6 months.

    I did notice they had some green algae in their water, and I cleaned out their heated waterer, and will put in ACV. I thought I might also give them yogurt.

    The weather has been up and down warmish and cold, rain and snow, and the coop was pretty messy, (cleaned it yesterday) as is the ground, which currently has about 6 " of snow.

    The only other unusual thing I can think of is that they won't walk in the snow, and so I put down straw from a condensed bale of straw for them to walk on...no, not spoiled at all.

    Any suggestions or should I try to get to a vet before I leave? Any help appreciated! Thanks!
     
  2. Wyorp Rock

    Wyorp Rock Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

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    Sep 20, 2015
    Southern N.C. Mountains
    Welcome To BYC

    When do you notice them coughing the most - after you put hay on the snow, during/after eating, nighttime roosting, when spending most of their time in the coop, etc.

    Coughing can be from a number of things, eating too fast/inhaling food, dusty straw/hay/bedding, ammonia buildup in coops that aren't properly ventilated and respiratory illness like Infectious Bronchitis or Mycoplasma.

    Try to monitor when and where they seem to be coughing the most. Make sure they are drinking plenty of water.

    If you have vet care, that would be best.
     
  3. Sussquires

    Sussquires New Egg

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    Sep 28, 2015
    Thanks for the welcome and the info!

    I have noticed them cough in the coop while roosting but also under the coop where there is straw, and where they are mainly hanging out lately because of the snow.

    Yesterday I cleaned out the coop, which, because of our recent weather and a minor surgical procedure I had, was dirtier than I had ever let it get before.

    Today, my coop door hinges broke (mighty windy here) and I spent a fair amount of time down there. I can't be sure, but it seemed there might be less coughing.

    In the meantime I called a vet and am waiting for a call back, but she doesn't work every day.
     
  4. Wyorp Rock

    Wyorp Rock Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

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    Sep 20, 2015
    Southern N.C. Mountains


    Wintertime, we humans tend to close the coop up more than we should and air flow/ventilation is limited, ammonia builds up along with dusty conditions. This can cause some respiratory symptoms like sneezing, but generally after correcting these things, the sneezing subsides after a few days. Since you are going out of town, it's better to see a vet, then take a wait and see if they improve.
     

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