Dwarf Tapeworms

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Malpower, Jun 26, 2010.

  1. Malpower

    Malpower Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I just got a call that my chickens' fecal sample showed dwarf tapeworms. Last week the vet had said to give him a sample that had poop from all the hens since if one had parasites the others probably would too. I had been told the results were negative earlier this week but just found out about the tapeworms which they say are not real common to chickens (the dwarf variety that is). I can't talk to vet until Monday about this, although they'd like to give injections to all 4 hens soon as possible but I can't get the hens to them, so am hoping the vet will come here to the hens next week.

    Has anyone had this kind of tapeworm in their chickens? Anything to do to protect against them? I usually put DE in their feed but maybe should put more.

    One thing I just found on the Internet and wonder if anyone else knows more about this -- there's a "Lesser Mealworm Beetle" which can infest feed and carry and leave pathogens. They are small black beetles. I feed my girls lots of live meal worms and haven't seen bettles with them, but have recently been buying dried meal worms (Happy Hen Treats) and have noticed that some containers often have black beetles in them. Never thought much about them since some feed, including dog food has sometimes been buggy. Does anyone know anything about this, these little black beetles? I have just ordered 6 more containers of the dried meal worms and decided to try to cancel the order but must wait till Monday. I'd hate to stop giving the hens these treats since they love them and are a helpful "lure" when needed, but if these beetles could be the cause of the tapeworms, I have no choice. Considering all the bugs and stuff the hens eat free ranging during the day, I just hadn't considered these beetles a problem.

    I talked with vet's office before seeing the info on the beetles -- all vet's office could tell me was that the tapeworms were probably picked up in the poop from other critters that hang around the coop area (squirrels, rats, cats, birds, raccoon, and so forth) -- unfortunately there's no way to keep them away even though there is fencing and a netting roof -- they all have learned to come through netting where there are openings around trees. Also, vet's office said these worms can be transmitted to humans and that I should throw away all the eggs the girls have laid -- <sigh> -- it will be hard but guess I'll have to throw out three dozen that I was going to give to family and friends this weekend!

    Would love to know if anyone has some good info and advice. Thanks so much.
     
  2. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD Premium Member

    It was my understanding tapeworms are transmitted via the fecal-oral route. Meaning you'd have to have fecal contamination on/in eggs for a human to get it, and to have to eat the egg raw.... Now if you treat for tape worms, you do want to toss those eggs. Are you sure that is not what the vet was meaning?

    And for the dwarf worms... I think they are most commonly found transmitted between fleas and rats.
     
  3. Malpower

    Malpower Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks for your response!

    Re the eggs -- I haven't yet talked to the vet about all this, only a staff person and she's the one who said I should throw out all the eggs I have to be on the safe side -- she wasn't speaking about those after treatment which, yes, I would assume one wouldn't want to eat. I think I'll hold onto my eggs and not toss until I talk to the vet on Monday -- cuz I agree that it seems that the egg inside the shell should be fairly well protected, but being rather new to chickens, what do I know? [​IMG]

    Unfortunately there are a lot of rats around, but night visiting critters, including a couple of cats, and some bait boxes, seem to have lowered that population a bit, but guess they'll always be scurrying about with their fleas, etc. Curses!
     
  4. Malpower

    Malpower Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Since the vet isn't available for me to talk to until tomorrow or the next day and I'm impatient to know more -- I've been reading about treatment for tapeworms and see that Albendazole or Valbazen are the drugs that work best for tapeworms. The vet's office was saying that they needed to inject all my hens and I'm not sure what would be the drug -- but the big problem is getting the hens to the vet, or catching them if the vet comes here and then has to inject them (fortunately just 4 hens, but they were adopted at about 4-5 months and had never been handled, so can only pick up one, and then have to be lucky and quick about it) -- so, I'm wondering if there's something for the worms that would be a liquid that could be fed to them on, say, bread?? I give them a bit of bread each morning and at the moment am giving meds to one hen on her piece of break each day. Do the Albendazole/Valbazen come in liquid or some form that could be fed in/on food, or are they only injectable?

    This also leads me to a question about worming the hens in general -- they've never been wormed -- is this something I should do on a regular basis, and how, with what and how often? I'm embarrassed to be so ill-informed about this. [​IMG]

    Thanks!
     
  5. 1_FnkyFrm

    1_FnkyFrm Chillin' With My Peeps

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  6. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble

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    Wazine, ivermectin and safeguard will not kill tapeworms. Malpower, you are correct that Valbazen will kill them, and a host of other worms including roundworms. Valbazen is sold as a liquid and jeffers livestock has it online. Like you said, you want to put it on a piece of bread and give a piece to each chicken. Here is the dosage: One half cc/ml for standard chickens...one quarter cc/ml for small chickens. Repeat the Valbazen treatment in 14-21 days and discard all eggs in the garbage during he whole timeframe. Dont feed the eggs back to your chcikens neither. Provide probiotics, extra protein mixed in their feed a day or two after worming, for several days after each worming. I'm curious to know what the vet plans to inject them with to kill the tapeworms...please ask him and let us know. Thanks in advance.
     
  7. Malpower

    Malpower Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:Thanks, this was good info for general worming -- I already give the hens DE and ACV on a daily basis, maybe it's helped with any other worms, maybe not, but unfortunately not these tapeworms. Thank you for the link!
     
  8. Malpower

    Malpower Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:Thank you so much -- this is most encouraging to know -- something that can be dosed out to each on bread! Whew! Catching them, injecting or even trying to put anything in their mouths would just not work! And thanks for the dosing info too. I'm going to ask the vet about this and see what he says, and will also let you know what it is he injects them with.

    Would you agree that keeping and using any eggs that have been laid up till the time they're given any meds are OK to eat? How long should one wait after the treatment is over to eat the eggs, a couple of weeks?

    Kerry
     
  9. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble

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    As I stated, the normal withdrawal time is 2 weeks. You dont want to eat the eggs because the wormer, and possibly a dead tapeworm could be passed into the egg. This is why you need to throw the eggs in the garbage. When you reworm them again in 2 weeks...same thing...throw the eggs away. I know, you're looking at 1 month of disposing eggs and I dont like doing it neither. But why risk the chance of getting a poison in your, or your family's body no matter how strong or how weak the poison is? Better to be safe then sorry. Your chickens will be weakened after the wormer, this why you need to provide probiotics etc...to rebuild their immune systems etc... As far as eating the eggs prior to discovering or prior to worming...tough decision you have to make! We have eaten the eggs prior...otherwise we'd be paranoid about eating anything, and so far, we havent seen a parasite in any our eggs that we've cracked open. There are some BYC'ers here who have though. I feel that as long as the eggs are cooked well enough,there shouldnt be any problems at all.
     
  10. Malpower

    Malpower Chillin' With My Peeps

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    No, I agree and had no intention of eating eggs after they'd been treated -- don't like throwing them away but it doesn't really matter at all -- the eggs aren't the most important thing here.

    I'll have to think about the eggs I DO have already -- we've been eating them and I give many away each week. So far I've not seen anything at all odd when cracking them. I'm assuming if a worm got in, it would be obvious, yes?

    I often give the hens yogurt in the evening, is that alone probiotic enough for them, just give them more than usual, or is there something more they should have?

    Won't see the vet until tomorrow evening and may not talk to him before then either but will be most interested in what he gives them and if he gives me some Albendazole/Valbazen to dose them for the weeks to come.

    Once again, thanks so much for the information!

    Kerry
     

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