Debating on putting down my Blue Wyandotte ...

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by mnrneuspeed, Sep 12, 2012.

  1. mnrneuspeed

    mnrneuspeed New Egg

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    I have a hen that was born late May of this year ... so that puts her 3 months and some change. I just lost a Polish to something. She (the polish) became real lethargic, and her breathing became real slow and heavy. Her course ran about 1 1/2 weeks. She kept getting worse and worse, so we put her down. I'm starting to see the same thing in my Wyandotte. I know everyone says this, but this hen is my baby ... she's the sweetest out of the five I now own.

    Here's the facts I know: her poop looks regular; greenish with the little white stuff on top .. my wife actually saw her poop yesterday. For the past two days she hasn't ate the chick feed that the others do, but she ate some Greek yogurt with vitamin E in it about five hours ago. She mostly keeps her eyes shut now, and can't stand up on her right side. She will attempt to stand up but will fall right over to her right every time. Her leg nor wing are broken, and I don't see any bite marks. All my hens supposedly were treated for Mareks before I got them as babies. I gave her a real close exam, and didn't see any mites, or bugs, and her vent looked okay. Her crop isn't full or hard. She actually hasn't ate much today or yesterday beside the little bit of yogurt. She does NOT have any running discharge around her nose or mouth or eyes. We use wood shavings (not cedar) .. pine "I believe". I have full faith that the bedding material is okay.

    She acts like she's super sleepy. I started noticing her change two days ago. She didn't even fly up to the perch for the past two nights. The other chickens pooped on her, so I know she didn't move all night. If you pick her up, her eyes will open but almost instantly close.

    That's about all I can tell without cutting her open, which is what I'm trying to avoid. I can't tell you much about the polish I just lost, other than I thought she had wrye neck. Her neck/head would instantly fold under her chest, and she eventually became non responsive. We put her down about three days ago after about a week of attempted health care. I'm hoping there is nothing contagious in my coop. I don't see anything similar between the way these two birds acted other than they both are / were sick.

    A few facts about the coop area ... All poop in the coop looks okay/normal. None of the hens are laying eggs yet. I have four other chickens, but they're all about the same age. I just bought a new waterer from Southern States, but I cleaned it pretty good, and keep fresh water in it. The coop area looks like a normal coop ... some of the boards are treated wood, but none appear to be pecked at. We keep if fairly clean, so it doesn't have an overly strong odor. I noticed an average sized rat nearby the other day and it's breaking into my shop where the food is located. My chicken coop/run is built onto the side of my shop so I imagine he's probably eating from the chicken food in my feeder as well as the bags inside the shop. I haven't seen any rat turds inside of my run "yet". I'm feeding all my chickens Chick Starter feed. I do not have any oyster shell inside their area yet for them to eat on. They seem to be munching on the small grains of dirt that are loose in the run.

    I'd rather loose all of my other chickens than this one, but nature has it's own way. If she has to go, then she has to go ... but I don't want her to suffer for the next week or two before I say "okay, she's had enough". Let me know if there is any other information I can provide. I could even possible upload a video to youtube if it would help.

    Any ideas?
     
  2. soler

    soler Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Is it medicated feed?

    Off hand the top two guesses could be worms or cocci. I just had a cocci case on a two month chick that showed no symptoms of cocci until i had the poop tested - she looked like she had something neurological or marek's.

    So, my first response would be, bring a poop sample to any vet (will cost you $20-30) and you will know if it's any kind of parasite. My second response would be try treating right away with corid and see if she gets better. It sounds like you might have something infectious n which case doing a poop test would be so helpful. If it were me i'd put them on corid AND test the poop.
     
  3. FlyHigher

    FlyHigher Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Could it be Newcastle disease?
     
  4. mnrneuspeed

    mnrneuspeed New Egg

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    I might have her poop tested just to see if there's anything I need to be concerned with when it comes to my other chickens. The chick starter feed I'm using is not the medicated kind. I used it to start with for the first few weeks of their life, but have since switch to regular chick feed. I'll have to read up some on Newcastle disease, and cocci to see if it matches what I'm seeing. Thanks for those suggestions, and I'll let you guys know what I find out.
     
  5. chickenzoo

    chickenzoo Emu Hugger

    I would get her started on Corid..often found with cAttle med at Tractor supply...I would get her on some.NOW. It won't hurt her either way...but it sounds like coccidia. if so she.needs to be treated yesterday...... as the more she.goes without treatment the more.damage occurs. It is the.same med in mediated feed..just. Much stronger dose. Id treat everyone that is in with her. Keep her warm and separate from others. Put vitamins in water and make sure she drinks it.
     
  6. 1muttsfan

    1muttsfan Overrun With Chickens

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    Vaccinating young chicks helps decrease the incidence of Mareks, but does not completely prevent it. Still, it doesn't sound typical for Mareks. Any respiratory signs? If she is still eating, you might wait a little longer before putting her down. I use a mix of yogurt and vegetable baby food, and scrambled eggs, to feed anyone hurt or ill.
     
  7. soler

    soler Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I totally agree with chickenzoo.
     
  8. mnrneuspeed

    mnrneuspeed New Egg

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    Just to bring a conclusion to this post, I ended up losing five of the six chickens I originally bought back in May 2012. They all showed the same symptoms (slowly losing the ability to stand, heavy breathing, one wing would generally go limp, they would drag themselves around, and symptoms would get worse), so I took my last bird to the NC Dept of Agriculture for a necropsy before it died.

    To sum up all the medical lingo:

    Mareks Disease.


    All my chickens have supposedly been vacinated for Mareks at birth, but it's no telling. The big hatcheries could be lying, or maybe it's another strain in our area ... who knows. Anyway, just though you guys viewing this post down the road would like to know. If anyone speaks medical lingo ... heres a little bit of the report:


    Lab Findings

    Necropsy

    General Results

    The bird was euthanized humanely and necropsied. External examination did not reveal external parasites, lesions, or
    injuries. A moderate to marked thickening of the right sciatic nerve was noted. A small (roughly 1.5x0.75 cm) whitish,
    firm tissue mass with a smooth cut surface was loosely attached to the subcutaneous tissue of the abdomen between
    the posterior end of the keel bone and the cloaca. The appearance of visceral organs and other tissues was
    unremarkable. Tissues were collected for histopathologic examination.

    -Histopatholog

    General Results

    Sections of brain, peripheral nerve, trachea liver, kidney, spleen, proventriculus, bursa of Fabricius, ovary, adrenal
    gland, and a tissue mass were examined.
    Brain: Multifocal lymphocytic vasculitis and perivascular encephalitis, with foci
    of gliosis and/or lymphoid cell infiltration.
    Peripheral nerve: Lymphocytic neuritis that ranges in severity from mild to very
    severe.
    Liver: A large vein in one section shows marked lymphocytic phlebitis. Multifocal portal and perivenular
    infiltration of lymphoid cells and mature and immature granulocytic leukocytes.
    Kidney: Marked infiltration of medullary areas and the wall of the ureter with lymphoid cells.
    Spleen: Expansion of the periarteriolar lymphoid sheath.
    Proventriculus: Moderate infiltration of the mucosa with lymphoid cells.
    Ovary: Marked interstitial infiltration of granulocytic myeloid cells.
    Adrenal gland: Infiltration of a periadrenal ganglion and nerves with lymphoid cells.

    Tissue mass: An encapsulated mass of dense population of lymphoid cells in connective tissue stroma.
    Bursa of Fabricius: No changes of diagnostic significance.


    Diagnosis
    Marek's disease.
     

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