Help! First time chicken owner and some of might have coryza!

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by PolishGal, Oct 14, 2009.

  1. PolishGal

    PolishGal New Egg

    Oct 14, 2009
    I am a first itme chicken owner with a small flock (18 chickens) in a house we built in my backyard. It is separated into two sections separated by chicken wire. One section houses the egg layers (wine dots red hens and auracanas *sp?*) and the other section hold our "fancy chickens" (silkies, cochins, and polish).
    Some of the red hens and auracanas started showing weepy eyes and sneezing when we introduced a new hen to ther section of the house. As the week went on, two of the wine dots showed the same symptoms. They then got mucus discharge from their eyes and nostrils. We isolated the really sick ones in cages in our garage and began treating the entire house with antibiotics. It's been two weeks and my dad has had to cull two of the reds and a winedot. I am worried that we will have to cull more and I don't want our "fancies" to get sick. None of them have showed any symptoms yet.
    We have been disinfecting the house regularly and putting fresh antibiotics in their water daily. I heard that pedialyte added to the water can help their systems too because of the electrolytes.
    All of the articles I keep reading makes this sound like coryza. Although, they haven't displayed any swelling or discoloration that I've seen. They have also been eating and drinking, but are quite lethargic.
    I apologize that this is so long. Is there anything else I can do? I don't want to lose my first flock [​IMG]
  2. PunkinPeep

    PunkinPeep Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 31, 2009
    SouthEast Texas
    At the very least, you need to separate any of the birds that aren't showing any symptoms from the rest. And then wait and observe those to see if they develop any.

    If they have coryza (or almost anything with similar symptoms), your birds will probably be carriers, even if they don't show symptoms. And you should remember that if you give or sell anyone any of your chicks or your adult birds. They will pass it on just like the new bird did to your flock.

    This is a wonderful example of the need for quarantine measures.

    That said, i'm really really sorry for your loss. I'm sure this is devastating to you. [​IMG] It would be to me.
  3. HidingInTheHenHouse

    HidingInTheHenHouse Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 21, 2008
    What kind of antibiotic are you using? If it is Coryza, you need to use the specific anitibiotic that will work for that, or your problem will not be solved. If you call your county extension office, they should be able to tell you where and how to send your next cull to get it tested to see exactly what you are dealing with. There are many different things that exhibit respiratory symptoms, so it could be any number of organisms, even a virus.
  4. sjarvis00

    sjarvis00 Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 4, 2009
    Shawnee, OKlahoma
    Coryza has a very bad smell, once you smell it you will know that smell. The smell is hard to describe, it is strong, and sour sick smell. If it is coryza the eyes will discharge a white pus about the cosistancy of cottage cheese. It wont be watery.
  5. PolishGal

    PolishGal New Egg

    Oct 14, 2009
    Well, the discharge is more like a yellow mucus and we have been cleaning up their faces to keep the mucus away from their eyes and nostrils as much as possible. Would it matter if I quarantined all the ones that are showing no symptoms in the same pen? We don't have the space or cage numbers to keep them individually.
  6. PunkinPeep

    PunkinPeep Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 31, 2009
    SouthEast Texas
    The main thing is to keep the sick chickens and the healthy chickens away from each other. So yes, keeping the healthy chickens all together is fine. But first sign of a symptom, get them out.
  7. Wild Chicken

    Wild Chicken Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 1, 2008
    West Michigan
    Polish Gal...hang in there!! I have rewrote here what I have written in another post. And quarantining birds is not a sure fire way to avoid problems (read further down in my post).....

    Coryza DOES NOT always have a smell, doesn't always have a cheesy discharge from the eyes (mine is yellowish and sticky), and it DOES NOT cross into the egg. So you can have a flock that has coryza and still sell hatching eggs or chicks....just not adult birds.....This is all information that I received from the Chicken Dr. (Peter Brown). He has a PhD in poultry and has studied poultry for over 40 years. You are going to get a LOT of different opinions on the board, with people wanting to give you a lot of false information (from people that mean well). I consider Peter an expert and so I have taken his advice for my flock that has coryza.....
    BTW..he also said that 98% of all backyard flocks would test positive for any number of CRD.......

    "That is EXACTLY what I have found out with talking with Doc Brown and doing much can cull your whole flock, start over and be right back where you were!! Doc told me last night about a gentleman he is helping that has over a hundred specialty bantam show birds, many that are from the last of breeder lines (VERY valuable and irreplaceable birds). He has a CLOSED flock....guess what ????? He has 4, that's F-O-U-R, diseases going through his flock right now. Ms, Mg, Bronchitis and ????. He is quarantined by the state and is facing uncertainty.

    My problem started with bringing in pullets. I quarantined them for a MONTH, have slowly started introducing them to my flock by moving their outdoor "cage" closer to the rest. So they are still separated but only by livestock fencing.....the others can't get to the food or drink. These new birds have not shown any signs until yesterday, after 2 of my hens got sick last week. So I have done everything I was "supposed" to, and the flock still came down with Coryza.

    Wild birds can carry it, you can get it from the feed mill, I am a dental hygienist in a rural area with many farmers, so I can pick it up at work, etc. It was only a matter of time before something like this happened to me....or will happen to anyone that has a flock of chickens. rant We can do what we feel and know is the right thing to do and STILL come down with crud.

    It's very frustrating, but I love my birds and won't change it for the world. I'm choosing to not cull my whole flock, to treat the ones that are sick, to vaccinate when they are all well, and THAN cull the ones that aren't getting better, as Doc Brown said those are the ones that are the carriers. This man is the Chicken god and should be awarded something for his efforts!! He has saved my flock from their own fate."

    So I would separate the birds that show symptoms, treat them, and as others get sick, separate and treat them also. If you need any more information, email/pm me and I would be happy to share with you what Peter has told me to proceed with my flock!!

    Good luck!!
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2009
  8. PolishGal

    PolishGal New Egg

    Oct 14, 2009
    Thanks for all the info Wild Chicken. I brought home some pedialyte tonight that the vet said I could dilute in their water to help them if they are dehydrated since they didn't want to eat or drink much. It doesn't help that it's been damp and rainy all day too. We have the sick ones divided up now-the really sick ones in one pen in our garage, and the ones just showing symptoms in our shed. Hopefully the electrolytes will help get their systems going again. I'll keep you posted. I may be asking you for some more info soon [​IMG]
    P.S. all my well birds are now in a separate part of the house we sectioned off that is disinfected and separated by plastic. They still have access to the run, but not in the same area as the sick chickens were in.
  9. sammi

    sammi Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 21, 2007
    Southeast USA
    you really should get some poultry vitamins or Poly-vi-sol liquid baby vitamins..Enfamil brand, no iron..give 2 drops on beak once a day for 4 days and 1 drop for 4 days.

    what antibiotic are you using?

    Peter Brown's supply web site is:

    all antibiotics have info for use...just click..injectables and water solubles.
    the home page of the site has articles.

    here is a link for instructions on how to treat:

    hope this helps.
  10. teddiliza

    teddiliza Chillin' With My Peeps

    I am in a similar situation, where I bought 3 pullets last week ( 4 months old) I noticed when I got them home that one was rattly and had yellow goo in its nostrils and sneezed frequently. Another appeared ok but had some yellow goo on it's nostril. The third looked completely healthy and we put it in a box by itself.

    After culling the sickest one, I contacted the state over concerns about being sold sick birds- though the owner said they were fine that morning- (I'm thinking he didn't spend much time with his chickens).
    I had also talked with an avian pathologist (Dr. Shaw @ University of MO) who said that the only way to prevent new disease coming in to your flock is to buy chicks from an npip certified flock/or hatching eggs. He says you take your chances with adult birds being carriers that look healthy, but when stressed illness breaks out and spreads to the rest of the flock. He also said that not all illnesses can be tested for, and you should quarantine new birds for at least 4 weeks to check for illness.

    After much thought, I am donating these purchased birds to be tested- which is being paid for by the state- because of the circumstances where the owner took the rest of the birds to auction-not knowing-I assume- they were exposed to the sick one. They are testing them for avian flu,coryza, bronchitis, and mycoplasmosis, and some other things. They said they will be humanely euthanized before being necropsied. I will be quite upset if they tell me that I'm paranoid and the birds just had allergies. I have had allergic birds in the past- which I discovered after changing to a different bedding that the symptoms stopped.

    I wish you luck, and hope your chickens get better.

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