Help asap! Sick hen with possible aspiration

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by BigMoma3, May 16, 2019.

  1. BigMoma3

    BigMoma3 Chirping

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    Sorry this is quite a story and I'm new to the group. Everyone I've asked in person (including a farm vet) has given me a different answer, but I'm desperate and going to try one more time so here goes...

    4 days ago I noticed my 2 year old RIR hen was lethargic and not wanting to walk. I examined her and she had poo all over her bottom. She had no interest in eating or drinking and had noticeable weight loss. I thought maybe egg bound, so I brought her in, gave her two warm epsom salt baths and calcium doses in water. Two days later no egg and still sick. At this point I could getnher to drink some electrolyte water and eat a few meal worms. Some people said maybe worms...I tried apple cider vinegar with cayenne pepper in water and went to get food grade diatomaceous earth from local Farm Store when the lady there told me it might be coccidiosis. At this point I took a fecal sample (which was now mere watery green diarrhea) to the only farm vet within 100 miles. It tested negative for parasites and coccidiosis. The receptionist there told me I could Google all day but the only way to know for sure would be to bring her in and have an exam because the vets "went to school for this". I went and told vet all her symptoms. He took her temp-106. He checked her crop and looked for sites of infection on her body. He determined it was an internal bacterial infection and gave her a dose of baytril and an anti-inflammatory for fever. He opened up her beak and basically squirted the stuff in, and I never saw her swallow. As soon as we left she started gurggling horribly and gaping her mouth open to breath. I am pretty positive "vet who went to school for this" shot the meds straight down her trachea. Even I know you can't do that. So now my poor baby won't eat or drink anything and can't breath. The vet visit was yesterday, and she is still alive this morning but now she spit up clear fluid from her beak earlier. At first I thought maybe she was getting out some of the meds from her lungs but when I researched it came up most likely aspirated pneumonia. I'm so desperate and want to help. She's a fighter and hasn't given up yet amd I don't want to give up yet either. Is there ANYTHING at all I can do for her??? Thank you for taking the time to read this.
     
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  2. BarnhartChickens98

    BarnhartChickens98 Crowing

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    Welcome to BYC! sorry to hear about your hen, you said she spit up some clear fluid, what does her crop feel like? is it hard, squishy, empty? the crop is located on the right breast right underneath the skin.
     
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  3. BigMoma3

    BigMoma3 Chirping

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    Hi! It has seemed empty this whole time. Someone did suggest this morning it might be sour crop, but when I read about it I wasn't sure it was. However I have an update. I just went out to check on her and when I picked her up some more fluid came out except this time it was yellowish. I had read you could tilt them slightly down and massage the crop to help it pass. Well when I did this, a LOT came out. And it was green and thick. I did this two more times and the same thing happened. I have now put her down to take a break. Could it have been sour crop the whole time? Can sour crop cause her to run a fever?
     
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  4. BarnhartChickens98

    BarnhartChickens98 Crowing

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  5. BigMoma3

    BigMoma3 Chirping

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    Thank you! Will do
     
  6. Wyorp Rock

    Wyorp Rock Enabler

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    Welcome To BYC!
    I'm sorry to hear about your hen.
    The normal body temperature range for an adult chicken is 105-107 F to me it doesn't sound like she's got a fever.
    The vet only gave one dose of Baytril? Did he send more home with you to follow up?
    "Normally" Baytril is given for 3-5 days.

    Is your hen able to poop? What does that look like?
    What you describe for this morning, she is having issues with her crop. Does her breath smell bad - yeasty or fermented? If it does, then Sour Crop. If there really is no odor, then you could be dealing with an impacted, doughy or slow crop.

    You don't mention when your hen last laid an egg? When you examined her, did you notice if her abdomen was bloated or felt like it had fluid in it? Often crops issues are a symptom of an underlying condition - worms, coccidiosis, infection and reproductive disorders are common conditions that accompany crop issues.

    Read the article below to see if one of the crop problems sounds like what you see/feel - report back to us with your findings along with some photos and we will go from there.
    http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/impacted-slow-and-sour-crops-prevention-and-treatments
     
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  7. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Free Ranging

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    I think you're right about the aspirated trachea thing.
    Is the vet a good avian vet with poultry experience or just a good vet?
    I agree about the problem with only a single dose of Baytril.
    I'm sorry I've never dealt with sour crop in my life.
    When there is an unknown, unexplained condition I always go back to basics.
    Isolate her somewhere with warmth and excellent ventilation. For the rest of the day, I'd just stick with plain water. First thing in the morning I'd give her a few drops of Nutri-Drench. Then provide water with the same dose of Nutri-Drench per the label directions for chicks 4-6 weeks old, (0.5 fl. oz. per gal). If you don't have somewhere close to buy Nutri-Drench today, you can substitute some Poly-Vi-Sol without iron until you can get some ND.
    The Baytril will have wiped out her good gut bacteria. So get some probiotics in her.
    I like Gro2Max powder. Until you get some, give a little bit of full fat plain yogurt or kefir with active cultures.
    I like the idea of the raw ACV but put it in the water. That will make the bad gut bacteria uncomfortable.
    If you are on city or county water, get some aquarium chlorine/chloramine neutralizer without any other additives for fish.
    She's obviously out of production currently so she doesn't need layer feed. Give her a starter or grower feed till she recovers fully.
    Try not to treat at all - especially with corn or scratch grains.
    After a couple days, treat with diced yams or carrots, dark berries like blackberries, raspberries and blueberries. Wild turkeys dig and eat tubers in winter and the long chain carbs are good for good gut bacteria.
     
    Last edited: May 16, 2019
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  8. BigMoma3

    BigMoma3 Chirping

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    That artical was wonderdul thank you! The vet gave me 6 days worth to bring home of the baytril so a total of 7 days. However I'm not sure if I believe anything he says oe does because he also said the normal temp is 102-103.

    I'm not sure when she laid her last egg. I don't really have a way to determine who is laying in the coop but she hasn't laid in the 4 days I've had her seperated. I checked her abdomen when I brought her in the first day and it didn't feel swollen. I'm only starting my third year with chickens though and have never experienced any sicknesses yet, so I'm not sure what I'm looking for.

    She has only pooped once today and it was dark green, not as watery as it has been.

    From the article it does sound like sour crop. It doesn't sound like impacted or doughy crop. She has been super sick though so I do think it was caused by an illness and not just slow crop. The vet did say she didn't have coccidiosis or worms according to the fecal sample... However I don't know if he even knows what he's looking for now. He said he thinks she has enteritis and that's what the Baytril was for. However, if it was not caused by enteritis then I am only making it worse by giving her the Baytril since it will kill even more good bacteria. I haven't changed the eaves or anything so I don't know what else would have caused it. She has never had a slow crop before.

    Oh and I'm not sure about her breath. She has been stinky for a while but I thought it was mostly the diarrhea. But the liquid she vomited smells absolutely horrible.

    And as soon as I figure out how to upload pictures I will get some. Not sure what all to take pictures of but will do my best.

    Thank you!!!
     
  9. BigMoma3

    BigMoma3 Chirping

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    And please excuse any typos. I'm going back and forth between checking this thread, taking care of my three kiddos, and nursing my chicky, so I have to type quickly!
     
  10. BarnhartChickens98

    BarnhartChickens98 Crowing

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    for pics if you are on a computer you can drag and drop them into the text box or use the upload a file option.
     
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