Gapeworm or something else?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by skunknchatter, Dec 31, 2014.

  1. skunknchatter

    skunknchatter Songster

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    Two day ago I noticed my rooster just sittingout in the snow gasping. Stretching his neck out and opening his beak wide. His comb was grayish purple. I picked him up and brought him inside. I noticed first that he had mites so I sprayed him for those. Then I got on BYC and searched previous threads. I decided the most likely culprit was gapeworm. Our feed store had Valbazen in stock and was willing to sell it by the cc so I got 1 cc and gave him half of it. I put him in a dog kennel in the basement with food and water. That first night he just lay down and slept. But when I checked on him the next morning he had drank all of his water but not eaten. He was still gasping but not as badly. Not stretching out his neck but still opening his beak to breath in. When exhaling he made a wheezing sound. When I checked on him that evening he had eaten quite a bit. His comb was also a lovely red color again. This morning when I checked him he had eaten all his food and drank his water down again. I gave him more food and water and waited for the afternoon so I could put him back outside when it was the warmest. Granted today that is only 20F. His breathing was even better today although not 100%. He still opened his beak just a bit when inhaling. I put him back out and he crowed (sounded like he had a terrible cold) twice. I figured that was a good sign if he could do that. However, when I went out to clean out the coop and put down new bedding he was siting and gasping again. I put him in the coop where it is a bit warmer since the sun beats directly on it.

    So is it gapeworm? Is it respiratory? Is the cold causing extra problems? He is 8 and has been out in colder winters than this. Never had a heater or anything in the coop. None of the other chickens are showing any signs of problems but will all be wormed just in case. Any thoughts? Does he need to be kept inside until the weather warms up a bit? Inside until I re-dose him next week? I don't want to spend a ton of money at this, he is a chicken after all, but I'd like to help him if I can. I'm rather fond of the old guy. He's never made an an aggressive move towards anyone adult or child. I'd kinda hate to lose him.
     
  2. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble Premium Member 9 Years

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    I seriously doubt it's gapeworm. However capillary worms can cause crop issues resulting in the symptom you're seeing. If it were a respiratory problem, there would be other symptoms; possible facial swelling, runny nostrils, bubbly eyes etc...
    Reworm him again in 10 days with valbazen, give him 1cc orally undiluted.
     
  3. skunknchatter

    skunknchatter Songster

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    We do have wild pheasants around here so I thought the gapeworm might be the culprit. However, I understand it is rare and I couldn't "see" any in his throat. Thanks for the tip on the capillary worms. With any luck the Valbazen will take care of the situation. He definitely doesn't have any runny or crusty eyes, noes, etc.

    He's 8lbs but you think a full cc of the Valbazen will be okay for him?

    Thanks for the quick reply.

    Oh and I don't know if it matters but... his poop is pretty firm and normal. Green and white and no worms that I can see (I've seen wormy poop before so no visible worms in his). I haven't had a fecal done to test for eggs.
     
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2014
  4. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble Premium Member 9 Years

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    A full cc of valbazen is safe for him. You wont "see" gapeworms in his throat even if he had them. Also, birds with gapeworm dont eat nor drink, they are too busy trying to breathe and not suffocate.
    Birds can have worms without seeing them in feces. When you see them in feces, most likely it's an infestation and internal damage has occured. You wont be able to see capillary worms in feces. Green feces can be a sign of worms among other things.
     
  5. casportpony

    casportpony Go Team Tube Feeding! Premium Member Project Manager 6 Years

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    X2 on the 1 ml dose of Valbazen, it's perfectly fine for a large boy like him.[​IMG]

    -Kathy
     
  6. casportpony

    casportpony Go Team Tube Feeding! Premium Member Project Manager 6 Years

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    -Kathy

    Edited to add:

    Note that I'm not saying the problem is gapeworms, just wanted to share the info that eggcessive found.
     
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2014
  7. skunknchatter

    skunknchatter Songster

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    Rooster spent the night out in the coop with everyone else. Temps were -10F. Today he is eating and drinking but still "gaping". When I went to pick him up he did stand up and run away. Good sign since the last two days he's just sat there. When he's not gaping you can hear him wheezing. He is also shaking his head and "sneezing/coughing" today which is new. He wasn't doing that before. Eyes and nose are still clear. Still no other chickens exhibiting signs of sickness.
     

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