Gas dip for scaly leg mites on feathered feet

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Emma Miriam, Jul 13, 2017.

  1. Emma Miriam

    Emma Miriam Chirping

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    Hello! I have three hens and just discovered that one of them, my Light Brahma, has scaly leg mites. I turned to the Chicken Chick (http://www.the-chicken-chick.com/2013/03/scaly-leg-mites-in-chickens.html), and her gas dip treatment seems the fastest and most reliable. However, I'm nervous to do this for my Brahma since she has feathered feet. Will it hurt her feathers in any way? And most importantly, if she later pecks at her feathers or feet, could she get sick?

    Also, do you think I should treat all three of my hens in this way, even though the feet and shanks of the other two look perfect?

    Thank you so much for your help!
     
  2. Wyorp Rock

    Wyorp Rock Enabler

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    More than likely after the gasoline has dried/evaporated it wouldn't be any more toxic than using some recommended pesticides.

    Anytime you are hesitant to try something, then research it thoroughly. If you still aren't comfortable, then try another method.

    You can also look into using something like VetRx - this may be more suitable for you.

    Scaley Leg Mites can be hard to get rid of, so you will need to be diligent and follow-up with any method of treatment you choose.
    It is also a good idea to clean out your clean your coop and treat with a Permethrin based poultry spray change the bedding and repeat in 7days or follow the manufacturer's label.

    Just my thoughts:)
     
    casportpony likes this.
  3. Emma Miriam

    Emma Miriam Chirping

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    Thanks so much for the reply! After looking into it more, I think I'll just go with the vegetable oil + tea tree dip, then vaseline. May take longer but she's a very tame bird so it won't be too hard to treat her every day for a few weeks.

    I have trouble cleaning out the coop thoroughly since it's just a dirt floor (hardware cloth is buried). Whenever I clean I spray Poultry Protector on the roosts and walls, but anything on the ground could probably just bury itself in the dirt and avoid contact. I've read elsewhere that scaly leg mites spend their entire life cycle on the chicken, so you just need to treat the roosts rather than the whole coop. Gail Damerow in the Chicken Health Handbook recommends brushing roosts with VetRx twice a month to kill scaly leg mites, so I think I'll try that? I can also replace the bedding and clean as best as I can.

    Thanks again!
     
    Wyorp Rock likes this.
  4. Wyorp Rock

    Wyorp Rock Enabler

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    That sounds good!
    Yes, Scaly Leg Mites do spend most of their life on the bird, but it can slowly spread from bird to bird with contact. It does seem most logical that roosts should be treated because of the close proximity of roosting birds.

    I would think replacing the bedding, using the VetRx and Poultry Protector, along with treating her legs, you will be good to go:)
     
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  5. ADozenGirlz

    ADozenGirlz The Chicken Chick[IMG]emojione/assets/png/00ae.png

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    To be clear, the gas dip treatment is not "mine," it is recommended, suggested and proven effective by Dr. Michael Darre, Poultry Professor of 30+ years at the University of Connecticut and the Cooperative Extension Service Specialist for the US Department of Agriculture. This isn't some crazy blogger nonsense made up in someone's culinary herb garden. It is safe and effective.
     
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  6. Emma Miriam

    Emma Miriam Chirping

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    Thank you Kathy for replying! I certainly do know that, and your blog is always the first place I go to for any chicken questions: you always provide very logical and proven advice, which I find incredibly valuable. I was just nervous because of my Brahma's feathered feet -- in treating the mites I didn't want to inadvertently damage her feathers, and thought it would be irresponsible for me not to double check. I appreciate you clarifying here.
     
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  7. ADozenGirlz

    ADozenGirlz The Chicken Chick[IMG]emojione/assets/png/00ae.png

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    I think you're smart to question the safety of any advice you receive online as much of what's available is churned out by individuals that have not done their due diligence with regard to research and don't consult with veterinarians, poultry nutritionists or poultry PhDs as I do. You can feel confident that this treatment is safe and effective and that your bird will be mite-free by day 3. Other methods cannot make that claim and your bird will continue to suffer from the infestation as the suggested treatments with oil, etc. are not capable of killing the nits. The nits will hatch and the cycle will continue with the treatments that sound more pleasant than gasoline.
     
  8. Emma Miriam

    Emma Miriam Chirping

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    Thank you Kathy for your advice. I wanted to follow up about my experience with these treatments. I tried vegetable oil and vaseline for a couple weeks (dipped in oil and slathered on vaseline every 2-3 days) and it didn't make any difference at all -- perhaps I didn't keep at it long enough, but I didn't want to wait any longer for results. So, I did the gasoline dip July 30-August 1, following the procedure exactly except for substituting vaseline for A&D ointment, which I had read was fine to do. No ill effects from the gas and I was feeling good that my hen was now mite-free.

    However, I just checked my hen this evening to see if the scales had fallen off and new regrown (tough to tell without inspecting her since she has feathered feet), and there's still no visible change at all! Scales are still raised just as much. If the gas dip worked, I should be seeing results by now, a month later, shouldn't I? What would you recommend I do?
     
  9. ADozenGirlz

    ADozenGirlz The Chicken Chick[IMG]emojione/assets/png/00ae.png

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    The problem was the mites and the damage they inflicted to the scales. The mites and their nits are now eradicated. The scales are going to take time to slough off. If you don't show the birds, the appearance of the legs is of no consequence. You can either not worry about it or you can give the bird regular soaks to soften the scales and brush with a soft fingernail brush. I don't see the benefit to that and it would probably just cause more stress for the bird.
     
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  10. Emma Miriam

    Emma Miriam Chirping

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    Thank you for the quick reply! Yes, I don't care about the appearance of the scales at all as long as the mites are eradicated and it isn't causing her pain. One further question, though: let's say it takes months for the scales to fall off, or maybe they never will (I just did some reading and saw that it's possible the scales may never return to normal). How will I know if the mites were to come back -- just if I saw further raising of the scales? I won't want to treat "just in case" because of the stress the dipping causes.
     
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2017

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