Disease spreading through flock... killed 3


Dec 10, 2015
Hi how can I prevent this disease from spreading any further in my flock? Three of my chickens have died.
They were coughing, sneezing, breathing sounded gurgly and congested. Sometimes they would randomly twitch their head and gasp. They were very sleepy and depressed, did not want to eat or drink or move anywhere. They had diarrhoea watery, with green chunks. I spoon fed it it's usual feed and water... but it didn't help, the food and water seemed to come right out very fast. They became weaker and weaker. I am worried this would continues spreading to other chickens. How can I prevent this or help those that are showing similar symptoms?!


Queen of the Coop
Jan 14, 2015
Placerville, California, USA
This is most likely a respiratory disease of some type. The really not-great thing about respiratory diseases is that they all look very similar but may require different medication. The ideal thing to do would be to get one of birds showing symptoms blood-tested by a vet.

Have they been in the same area as other chickens? Unfortunately diseases like these are extremely contagious and oftentimes the whole flock will get it in a very short amount of time. These diseases are sometimes and even oftentimes treatable but they are almost never curable, meaning they will stay with the flock for life. Even birds who have never showed symptoms have potential to be asymptomatic carriers.


10 Years
Mar 24, 2009
California, central valley
I agree, getting a bird tested would be extremely helpful. Then you know what you are dealing with and how best to treat/manage it. A lot of these things are viral, some are bacterial. The problem is, even when it's viral it often morphs quickly and easily into secondary bacterial infections and pneumonia. That is what usually kills the bird rather then the disease itself. For that reason it is a good idea, if you want to save the birds rather then cull, to treat with antibiotics. This prevents the secondary infections and they are usually then able to recover. Depending on what they have, you may see repeat flare up's from now on or you may never see another outbreak, just really depends on what they have. Their carrier status also depends on what they have. Some diseases like infectious bronchitis leave birds a carrier for a short time, other diseases result in a bird being a carrier much longer or for life. An avian vet can take some blood samples and do other testing to help you find out what it is.

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