Gasping Chicken

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Mandy707, Nov 5, 2017.

  1. Mandy707

    Mandy707 Hatching

    Jul 11, 2016
    Hi, my name is Amanda and I have a sick hen. She is a 7 month old black australorp. I noticed the other day that she was moving a little bit slower than the other chickens in my flock and that she was slightly hobbling like she hurt her foot so I made a note to keep an eye on her and bring her inside if it got worse but she seemed to get better. Today I noticed that she was slow moving and she let me pick her up and as I held her, I noticed that she was gasping for air. She stretches her neck out real far and it almost looks like something is stuck in her throat. She doesn't seem to be limping anymore. She just isn't being very active. She has been exhibiting the gasping symptoms just for today. None of my other birds have these symptoms. I've put her somewhere warm and comfortable and she occasionally gasps but for the most part is resting and hiding her head in her feathers. All my birds are free range so I haven't noticed if she has irregular poop but I am going to check her next bowel movement. I really don't have any idea what treatment to administer and I am looking for some help/advice. From what I've read gapeworm is rare in chickens so I don't think she has that. I think she possibly has a respiratory infection or some kind of infection. She has no other symptoms other than the gasping and recent lethargy. She is a very sweet chicken and I'm really worried about her. Any input/advice is greatly appreciated and I thank you for taking the time to respond to me.

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  2. Rickba

    Rickba Songster

    Apr 28, 2017
    If it's respiratory get some TC, Tetracycline, and mix it in her water. It will turn the water yellow but it is the best thing for resp'y illnesses.
  3. Wyorp Rock

    Wyorp Rock Enabler

    Sep 20, 2015
    Southern N.C. Mountains
    Hi @Mandy707 :frow Welcome To BYC

    I'm sorry your pullet is not doing well. She's very pale for 7months old - do you know when she last laid an egg?
    Check her crop to make sure it's emptying overnight. If you can take a sample of poop to your vet for testing that would be a good idea.
  4. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Enabler

    Apr 3, 2011
    southern Ohio
    Sorry about your sick chicken. A vet would be the best thing you could do if possible. If not, try to get some fresh droppings checked by your regular vet for worms and coccidiosis.

    It does sound like she may have some sort of respiratory infection, such as bronchitis, MG, ILT, or even fungus like aspergillosis. All are hard to diagnose without testing. Gapeworm or capillary worms are treated with 5 straight days of SafeGard Liquid Goat Wormer 0.25 ml per pound (1 1/4 ml for a 5 pound bird) given orally. The SafeGuard horse paste may be used as well. Or if you have Valbazen you may use that at 1/2 ml orally for 5 days.

    Fungal diseases are more common in wet muddy conditions. Viruses or bacterial infections can be spread by carrier birds, including wild birds. Tylan 50 injectable given orally, 0.2 ml per pound twice a day for 5 days would treat a bacterial disease such as MG or coryza. Viruses may run their course for several weeks.

    I would treat her with a wormer and an antibiotic, just to cover all bases. There is an egg withdrawal of 14 days after the last day of worming. Keep her drinking water, perhaps using a poultry vitamin in her water, and feed her treats of chopped egg along with her usual feed. Sometimes wetting a small amount of the feed is a good way to get water into them. Good luck on her recovery.

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