Diarrhea in coop one dead silkie, what to look for?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by yolkoroo, Jan 1, 2013.

  1. yolkoroo

    yolkoroo Out Of The Brooder

    May 4, 2011
    I had been out of town for the holiday and came home to be told my silkie had been acting strange and sitting in one place for long lengths of time. She was still eating and drinking She did not go into the coop least night on her own, so I placed her inside, which disturbed some of the chickens. In the morning she was up and about, and ate at least; however by afternoon she had died. I did find several spots of diarrhea in the coop, some of which is on the upper level, where my standard and larger birds go (but the silkies do not fo here). Is there anything I can do proactively to protect the rest of the flock? He chicken who died was only about 2 and 1/2 years I'd age. I thought electrolytes all around, but what else?
  2. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner True BYC Addict

    Feb 2, 2009
    Northwest Arkansas
    How are the others acting? Are they active and acting normal or are they standing around fluffed and puffed up and being lethargic? There are several different things that could cause something like this. The diarrhea and her death may not even be related, but they probably are.

    My first thought in something like this is Coccidiosis. It's unusual for an older bird like this to get Coccidiosis unless they have been exposed to a new chicken that could be a carrier. Then it is not all that unusual, especially if the coop or run are wet. I suggest you look up the symptoms of Coccidiosis and see if that fits what you are seeing. You don't always get bloody poop with Coccidiosis.

    They can get diarrhea without being ill. Some treats or foods will cause that, like pumpkin if they eat a lot. There is nothing unusual or wrong with that. But again, it is a symptom to look to see if something is wrong. With a chicken dying, it is real suspicious. From what I read in yoru post you don’t know for sure she had diarrhea but I’d assume she probably did and watch the rest of the flock really closely.

    There are a lot of things that can cause a chicken to act sick then die. It could be a disease. It could have been poison of some type. It is often that an internal organ just quits working. She may have eaten a nail or screw that punctured her gizzard when she tried to grind it up. She may have injured herself. It may be a f lock problem or an individual problem.

    It is not unusual for a chicken to just die. If you deal with living animals you will deal with dead animals. That’s just the way it is. But her death and the diarrhea are huge warnings to be on the lookout. If others start acting lethargic, you have a flock problem, not an individual problem. If another acts lethargic, I’d start treating the flock for Coccidiosis while still looking for other symptoms. I’d also do a web search for chicken necropsy in your state. Each state is different. Look up what you have to do to preserve a chicken that dies and what it would cost to get a necropsy. It’s probably too late for that Silkie but you can decide of you want to get a necropsy done if another one dies and you will already know what to do to preserve the dead chicken.

    This type of thing tends to happen when you are out of town or something else is going on. There is never a good time but it seems it is always a really bad time. It probably doesn’t help you to say that a lot of us have experienced things like this. I know it can be unsettling, particularly because you just don’t know what happened or what, if anything, you might have been able to do to prevent it.

    I wish you luck.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by