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General chicken heath questions?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by xxSonja, Sep 6, 2010.

  1. xxSonja

    xxSonja Songster

    Dec 2, 2009
    Firstly, this is not an emergency, non of my chickens are in danger, sick, or injured. No ones life is at risk. So if you can help someone else immediatly please do, these questions can wait... If you think this should be in a different subject please let me know, i was unsure where to post it.

    Now Ive had chickens on and off for a few years, never anything fancy, i doubt more than 5 have even been pure breeds. I love my mutt chickens, and want the best lives for them i can offer.
    Recently a few questions have been come up that i found i was a little fuzzy on or wanted to know more about, so here i am asking for answers / advice / experienced opinions. I would greatly appreciate it if you could answer with as much depth and explanation as possible, Thankyou.

    What colour should a chickens eyes be? And does it vary depending on breed/age/sex?

    What causes an firm upright comb to become floppy? Is it something to worry about?

    Should a chickens crop be hard, firm with give, or soft?

    Should the crop be evenly balanced or off to one side?

    Chickens that eat feathers. Is it bad behaviour or a lack of something in the diet? And how do you tell the difference?

    Should a roosters spurs be trimmed or removed? how dangerous are they? and how fast do they grow?

    Should you Vaccinate your backyard flocks? Is it worth it? And if so what should you actually vaccinate against?

    Breeding. Should you limit it to only breeding pure breeds for health reasons, or will cross breeding still give you happy healthy birds?

    Are there any certain breeds that have specific or are more prone to particular health issues?

    Can chickens be outside no matter what the weather, rain, hail or shine, all day everyday without serious illness occuring? (obviously not in severe weather)
    Can they be kept indoors all day everyday without health issues?

    What if any diseases or illnesses are transferable from chicken to human and vice versa?

    I realise that a few of these must have been covered before, and i apologise as i either couldnt find the posts or they didnt cover my specific questions. I may add more questions later as they occur to me.


  2. sheila3935

    sheila3935 Songster

    Jul 10, 2010
    Stonington, illinois
    Im new to chickens so I would like to know some of the questions you have asked. I do know that with my RIR their combs started to flop when they started to lay. Their crops are off to the side a little, And it shouldnt be rock hard just firm when they have eaten alot. My roosters are not old enough to have big spurs but Ive been told you can remove them but they will grow back so you have to do it every so often. The spurs can cause damage if they come after you but hopefully you have a good roo that wont do that.Keeping them outdoors or in use common sense. They do need sunshine, and when it rains not just a sprinkle or two I put them in their coop. they dont do well in drafts in cold weather. I know you can get histoplasmosis from the chicken droppings actually the dust from dried droppings but if you keep youe coop clean the risk goes down as far as breeding it depends on what you want and if you are going to be selling chicks. Some of my prettiest hens are barnyard mix. The other questions I dont know I am sure someone here will be able to answer for you.
  3. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble Premium Member

    Nov 27, 2008
    Jacksonville, Florida
    Wow! With all those questions, a book could be wriitten! As a matter of fact, I recommend you purchase "The Chicken Health Handbook" by Gail Damerow like I did years ago. It has all the answers to all of your questions. In addition, I've seen all the answers to all of your questions here in BYC forum at one time or another. I recommend you use the search box provided. Good luck!

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