Coughing Rooster & Hen...Help

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by jrottie, Nov 26, 2012.

  1. jrottie

    jrottie Out Of The Brooder

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    I am looking for some help with my 2 yr old Australorp Roo, and my Americauna Hen. I live in SW Ohio, and the tempratures have been on a roller coaster ride the past month. 3 wks ago is was in the low 70's here, and then dropped into the low 20's in one day. when that happened my Roo started sneezing, coughing, and shaking his head a lot. I figured he had just caught a cold. His appetite has remained normal, and he travels the yard all day with the other 15 hens. He has quit sneezing, but his crow is horrible, and he is still coughing. Last week it was in the low 60's here until Friday, when it again dropped off into the 20's at night. Today my favorite hen started sneezing and coughing like the Roo. The only difference with her, is she quit laying over the weekend, and spent most of the day in the coop. She did come out and got some meal worms from me, and I observed her eating from the feeder, but no foraging the last 2 days. I love these goofy birds, and want to be able to help them, but with no vets in this area that take care of poultry, I am calling to the smart people out here to help. The other girls seem to be fine. The coop is thoroughly cleaned out every 5 to 6 days. It is elevated 2 feet off the ground. I use a mixture of Cedar and pine shavings for bedding, and they have a full roost above, which they all use at night. Their water is changed at least twice daily, and they are only in the coop at night, or when the weather keeps them in. My wife wants to put a heat lamp in one end, to knock off the chill, but I have been told that is a big no no. any help would be much appreciated....Thanks ...Rob
     
  2. Trampledbygeese

    Trampledbygeese Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sounds like you care a lot about these birds. Hope someone here can help. Keeping the coup clean is a good place to start.

    Question, why cedar? Most varities of that tree can cause cancer - I don't think your chickens have this, as it takes years, but still... Personally I tend to stay far away from wood shavings except maybe in the summer for the nesting boxes. I'm more a hay/straw girl when it comes to bedding, but that's not for everyone.

    What's the ventilation like in your coup? Condensation and stale air is more likely to damage chickens than cold. Basically, if your coup is full of spider webs, the ventilation is good, if not, then there is not enough airflow. This is usually the biggest problem for chickens, especially when the weather changes.

    I usually keep the window open till it's minus 5 degrees C. (don't know what that is in F.) and even if it gets colder than that, there are several roof vents that are always open. It gets so moist with all the chickens breathing in there, that they get lung troubles if I close the window earlier.


    If your ventilation in the coup is good, it could be an illness. By now the whole flock would have it, so isolation may not be useful. Perhaps a dose of antibiotics?

    If you are not doing it already, it's time to put some extra vitimines in the chicken water.

    Hope this helps a little, maybe someone else here can be of more use.
     
  3. Angelpoo

    Angelpoo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    [​IMG]

    I would also like to add that it is "cold season" electrolytes would be good to add to the water. Sounds to me like they have a little cold. The warmer they are the faster they will get better. Its normal that when a chicken is under stress like weather or sick etc that they will stop laying for a bit. I see no problem with a heat lamp... other than it being super dangerous if it drops and starting a fire. I have had a heat lamp in my coop every winter and they have been fine. I keep in above my water and make sure its high enough above the water that if they chickens jump on the water feeder to warm up under it (which they do) that it isnt close enough for them to knock over or burn their feathers on. and yes cedar and pine can be bad. i use horse wood shavings... not sure what they are, but it doesnt smell, so its not pine or cedar.

    Hope your little "goofs" get better soon. Best of luck.


    Sincerely,
    BeautifulJade [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
     
  4. Trampledbygeese

    Trampledbygeese Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I forgot to mention, I've found a corrilation between lack of grit and breathing problems/sneezing durring the winter months. Usually I give them some extra sand and they gobble it up and start getting better.

    I don't know why this is, some sort of connection between digestion and breathing? Maybe like a kind of sour crop without the sour breath and squish neck?
     
  5. jrottie

    jrottie Out Of The Brooder

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    I don't use a large amount of cedar, and it is covered over by low dust flake pine shavings. I have always been told that the cedar will keep away mites, fleas, and lice,and that seems to hold true. I haven't had any parasite problems in my coops. There are two large windows that let air flow through real well. I added apple cider vinegar to their water yesterday, and they both seemed more active today. I am not sure if that helped them, or the warm oatmeal breakfast I cooked this morning did, but they did seem better today. Tonight we are dipping into the upper teens, so I pray they will endure the cold tonight. I appreciate all the help. I would entertain the horse wood if I knew where to get it in Ohio. Thank You again....Rob:)
     
  6. jrottie

    jrottie Out Of The Brooder

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    I will give them more grit. I have 39 chicks in the brooder, and they eat a lot of grit, but havent been giving the big girls any, because they free range all day. My mistake is probably assuming they get enough out in the lane :(
     
  7. jrottie

    jrottie Out Of The Brooder

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    What kind of electrolytes do you recommend, and where is the best place to get them? Little goofs? That is a good description of my bunch...lol
     
  8. Angelpoo

    Angelpoo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I use "electrovite" or "poul-vite" but anything should work ;)
     

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