First Chickens, not off to a good start...please help...sick!

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by mrsgibber, Mar 16, 2009.

  1. mrsgibber

    mrsgibber Chillin' With My Peeps

    674
    2
    141
    Jun 3, 2008
    Bolton, CT
    I previously posted in a different section but given the state of things today I thought I'd put it in the disease section....can any one help?........

    Well I'm very stressed out myself right now. I don't think they are coughing, I believe they are sneezing but two of them spewed BLOOD when they sneezed. I called the farm where I got them yesterday and took three of the five back to them. Two of the hens are quite happy and behaving quite well so I kept them.

    I got to the farm and found three others that looked healthy and i know I probably shouldn't have done this because come to find out the farmer has lost a few hens to whatever this but didn't think it had infected the pullets since they are kept completely separate and hadn't so much as gone outside yet with the other hens & roosters. She started treated her hens with an antibiotic and said she hasn't lost any since but she still doesn't know what this is.

    Well I took the new three home and she gave me a 7 day supply of treatment to add to their water as well to prevent or stop these ones from getting sick. Only one of the new birds is sneezing now but they are all active and seem fine otherwise as where the other three I took back seemed more listless.

    What should I do? Should I just take them all back and try to gets some new chicks to raise (which I really don't feel ready to deal with yet) or should I try to stick it out with these five and see if they stay healthy?

    My husband and I put so much money and even more labor into getting these chickens here, it is so upsetting to be starting out this way. sad
     
  2. chookchick

    chookchick Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,901
    22
    176
    Aug 18, 2008
    Olympia WA
    I am sorry you are having such a difficult start with chickens!
    As you are probably aware now, NEVER take chickens from a place that has any kind of illness--it's a recipe for heartbreak. Spewing blood when they sneeze is, I believe, a sign of ILT. I'll try and dig some info on that up. If your hens remain healthy, they will probably be a carrier for whatever disease they have been exposed to. This means that you will probably not be able to introduce any new chickens without them getting sick. If you are willing to accept that, then go ahead and keep them. I would suggest mulling the situation over for a few days, and keep your options open.

    Here's a link with some info on ILT--http://www1.agric.gov.ab.ca/$department/deptdocs.nsf/all/agdex2216

    Here's another thread on ILT---hope this is not your issue, but it sounds bad....

    https://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=116130
     
    Last edited: Mar 16, 2009
  3. MoodyChicken

    MoodyChicken Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,869
    14
    181
    Feb 15, 2009
    Northern California
    That's not good at all! Coughing blood is a unique symptom and only 2 or 3 diseases cause that, all of which are very serious (I know Laryngo is one). I would be very cautious around those birds (as far as keeping them and exposing them to your flock). I would definitely remove them and thoroughly disinfect everything they could have touched. I'm not trying to freak you out, but just be wary. Don't purchase any more birds from that breeder, even if they look healthy (it's a near guarantee that they're carriers).
     
  4. Henrietta23

    Henrietta23 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 20, 2007
    Eastern CT
    I'm so sorry you're going through this. Thank you for bringing it to my attention! I am only a matter of miles from the place where you got your birds. I'm now concerned that this could be spread to my birds. Am I unfounded in this since what I've read so far seems to indicate I'd most likely contaminate my birds by adding infected birds to my flock or through dirty shoes or clothes, etc. Crossing my fingers. I've been to the farm once and the birds all seemed healthy then. That was a while back and my birds are all fine. I will be much more careful in the future about where I visit and cleaning my shoes, changing my clothes before being around my own flock!
     
  5. MoodyChicken

    MoodyChicken Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,869
    14
    181
    Feb 15, 2009
    Northern California
    Quote:I have shoes specifically designated for my chicken coops. They don't go anywhere else and I won't wear any other shoes up to the coops. I also have jackets that I only wear around my coops. Just little precautions to help prevent things.
     
  6. mrsgibber

    mrsgibber Chillin' With My Peeps

    674
    2
    141
    Jun 3, 2008
    Bolton, CT
    Quote:I was there just weeks before and in the pen with the chicks. All was good. They went away for a few days and left a friend (who has a chicken farm) take care of their farm. When they got back they had two hens dead and two more died shortly after and it all went downhill from there. She gave me the pullets thinking that whatever made her flock sick wouldn't have gotten to the chicks/pullets because they are completely separated. It's sad. [​IMG]

    You have to follow strict biosecurity measures when you visit their farm. Here are some measures I've found on line that you should practice to protect your birds. Like I said, I had to totally strip my coop (thank god it's a small one), throw away all their feeders, waterers and even rip up the lino that I had put on the floor. I then had to scrub down the entire coop with Oxine and must repeat once a week for four weeks. I have actually sprayed it down three times in every nook and crevice. Then I air it out all day in the sun. But here are the measures I found for visiting other poultry farms:

    How can I prevent ILT from infecting my flock?

    Preventing the introduction of ILT and other viruses onto your farm should be the goal of
    all producers. Preventing the introduction of ILT into your flock is not difficult to do if you
    follow some “common sense” guidelines.

    • Avoid moving any birds onto or off your farm during an ILT outbreak.
    • Do not visit other poultry producers during an ILT outbreak.

    Dr. Bob Hillman, Executive Director of the Texas Animal Health Commission
    recommends simple biosecurity measures that can be taken to help protect flocks:

    1. “Keep a spare pair.” Buy a pair of inexpensive rubber boots, and wear them only
    on your own premises, to avoid ‘tracking in’ disease.

    2. “Give germs the brush off!” Use a long-handled brush to scrape off manure, mud
    or debris from tires, equipment or boots, then disinfect.

    3. “Disinfection prevents infection!” Mix a solution of three parts bleach to two parts
    water, and use it liberally to clean rubber boots and equipment brought onto your farm.
    If visitors don’t want their vehicle tires sprayed with disinfectant, ask them to park
    outside your gate.

    4. “Make visitors take cover.” Don’t be shy about asking visitors to disinfect their
    footwear -- or better yet, provide guests with disposable shoe covers, or footwear worn
    only on your place.

    I wish them the best, it's not a fun thing for them to go through just starting out homesteading.
     
  7. MoodyChicken

    MoodyChicken Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,869
    14
    181
    Feb 15, 2009
    Northern California
    Confirmed, it was ILT?
     
  8. mrsgibber

    mrsgibber Chillin' With My Peeps

    674
    2
    141
    Jun 3, 2008
    Bolton, CT
    Quote:Can't say 100% because I don't know if she took any for narcropsy (sp) but all signs point to it. They had all the symptoms and I called Peter Brown (aka the chicken doctor) and he said yup ILT because of the bloody cough it had to be.
     
  9. Cetawin

    Cetawin Chicken Beader

    13,752
    58
    333
    Mar 20, 2008
    NW Kentucky
    I am so sorry you are going through. I cannot stress enough to make sure everything is disinfected thoroughly. Even if they are not sick, they came from a sick environment.

    Personally, I would take them all back, spend the time and effort to disinfect the coop area, my vehicle, clothing, yard, run and etc. Then wait a couple of weeks and repeat it. Then I would get new babies from somewhere far away from this farm and start over.

    Why people do not manage their animals and then pawn them off on someone else is beyond me. But as a recent poster stated...


    "You cannot fix stupid"
     
  10. mrsgibber

    mrsgibber Chillin' With My Peeps

    674
    2
    141
    Jun 3, 2008
    Bolton, CT
    Quote:Actually I did take them all back on Wednesday. Luckily this nasty episode is all over. Now I am starting fresh with chicks.[​IMG]
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by