Gasping Hen, dont know what to do for her. Please help.


5 Years
Oct 6, 2014
Went to feed the girls early this morning and found one of my hens gasping. She is not eating. Tried to look down het throat and she flew frantically around the coop. Tried a little water and the same result. Eyes are fine. No discharges from vents. I did change food to pellets the other day from crumbles. Massaged crop and throat areas. Crop seems empty. Maybe the pellets gummed her up? That's why I tried a little water. She shook it out and flew around. Not sure whats going on here. Going to feed store and get crumbles and put some more grit in coop.
Can anyone help a hen out?
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Welcome to BYC. It's pretty upsetting I'm sure to see her in distress, and so scared. Is the gasping silent, or is she making sound when she does it? Is she having any chirping or sneezing? After she goes to sleep on the roost, maybe you can listen to her for any gurgling or rattles when breathing, and look for any nasal drainage which may show up by having dirt around the nasal openings. Do you live in a tropical area where gapeworm could be a factor? It is spread by the Surinam cockroach and will only be a problem in very warm areas. She may have a respiratory disease which could be a virus, a bacteria, or a fungus from mold. Has it been wet and moldy where you live? Here is a link to read about the common respiratory diseases such as mycoplasma (MG,) infectious bronchitis, coryza, ILT (which can cause gasping,) and aspergillosis (which can cause silent gasping:)
Thnaks for the info. I will do research and hopefully get this taken care of. I just looked at here again. She is still gasping(poor thing). She is not making any gurgling noises. Her physical appearance looks fine. Other than me massaging her crop and throat and trying to look down her throat earlier today, she flew around crazily after I did that. No discharges of any kind. She does make a very faint noise while doing the gasping. Other than that I am at a loss here. Wish I could help her.
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Do you have any vets in your area who would see chickens? Infectious bronchitis can also cause gasping, but sneezing is also common. Some of the respiratory diseases will respond to Tylan 50 injectable given orally or by injection--1 ml daily for 5 days for a 5 lb chicken. Reduce the dose to
1/2 ml if under 5 lb.
Ok, I did the reading of common disease's in the link you posted. Thank you. I believe the symptoms are more in line with the Aspergillosis or the Equine Encephalitis. I do see mosquitos in the coup area. And we do have horses and cattle in Benicia CA.
So, there is no treatment for the Equine disease and the Aspergillosis.
On the other hand, I tried some apple cider vinegar in a dropper down her throat.
I will update tomorrow.
She may have had something stuck farther down in her throat or she may have aspirated something into her lungs. I had a very, very similar situation this past spring. Sudden onset of severe gasping for breath in a young hen that had been completely normal and healthy prior. Poor bird was in a panic, huge eyes, couldn't get a breath. She passed away on the way to the vet. Necropsy revealed she had aspirated something into her lungs. Her body tried to wall it off which in turn created large cell mass that basically suffocated her.

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