Tiff Mc

5 Years
Sep 21, 2014
My girls are sick! I found one hen on the ground the other night instead of on her perch and her feet are curled and she can't stand up. She is no longer eating and I'm having to give her vitamin water from a syringe. I found another hen today limping and wobbling along. And anther hen that I thought was broody the last two weeks was off her best today and she is half the size she was a couple weeks ago! I love m girls! What is going on?
Have they been wormed and deloused? Do the Valbazen for worms and Ivermectin for mites, lice, etc. Broody hens don't eat too good btw. I'd treat them all though.
Is it extremely hot where you live? It sounds like they may have a vitamin deficiency (riboflavin) that can cause curled toe paralysis, but Mareks disease could also be a possibility. Were they vaccinated for Mareks? I would start some poultry vitamins in the water right away, but avoid Poultry Nutri-Drench because it lacks riboflavin. Here is some reading about Mareks and vitamin deficiency:
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I'm in middle TN and we have had a pretty mild summer. Only a couple days in the mid to upper 90's. I just spoke I my immediate neighbor and she has had four come down with the same thing? Her four did not make it! I'm in a race with time at this point!
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Also forgot to mention that I have had these hens for two years and my neighbor has ha her 40 something for several months. Gets range in age.
If you lose one, I would send a refrigerated (not frozen) body off to the state vet for a necropsy, and ask for Mareks testing. Mareks is spread through dust, dander, and droppings, so having an immediate neighbor with a similar disease is scary because it can either be spread by wild birds going between properties. Did she see symptoms of paralysis of a leg or wing, or paralysis of the neck. Mareks has so many different symptoms since there are 4 types, and some birds get some symptoms while others have differing symptoms. I would call the state vet and talk to them about what you are seeing, incase they have seen other cases. Here is the contact info:

Kord Animal Disease Diagnostic Laboratory - Kord Animal Health
Diagnostic Laboratory
TN Dept of Agriculture
436 Hogan Road
Nashville, Tennessee 37220
Phone: 615-837-5294 Fax 615-837-5250
Just spoke to my neighbor. Her babies started holding their heads weird and then couldn't walk... I'm so sad if it is Mareks! I know 100% that 6 of my 8 girls were vaccinated, but two of that 6 is showing symptoms!
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There are other neurological diseases which could be possible, so I would do some research first before assuming it is Mareks. Botulism, lead or chemical poisoning, and aflatoxin poisoning from moldy feed are a few of the other possibilities. The Mareks Faq by Nambroth (the first link in post #3 contains more about this, and is very good to read. There also could be some rare virus showing up in your area, thus checking with the state vet tomorrow may be wise. Also ask how to send a body for a necropsy, and ask if there is any cost, as some states are free. Make sure that you aren't seeing any respiratory symptoms, or symptoms of coccidiosis. I'm so sorry that this is happening.
I said goodbye to one of feathered friends this morning and met with the Dept. of Ag. I sacrificed one of my ailing hens in hopes of saving the rest of my flock. I'm sad to say goodbye to her, for she was still clinging to life, but she was clearly not getting any better! I will keep you all posted when I get the pathology report back.

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