Help!!!! My chickens have colds

ooltewah

In the Brooder
6 Years
Sep 10, 2013
16
1
26
Ooltewah, TN
Help!!!! My chickens have colds! They are sneezing and my special rooster that is normally very aggressive is pitiful. I bought some vetRX I think it is and have been putting that on him. I cleaned his nose and removed all the gunk. This is serious because these chickens are my 12 yr old sons who brought here from his daddy's after his daddy got killed in a tragic motorcycle accident three months ago. Please give me any suggestions
 

Eggcessive

Addict
Premium Feather Member
10 Years
Apr 3, 2011
61,851
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southern Ohio
Sorry about your son's dad. Do they have face or eye swelling, eye bubbles, or a bad odor about their heads besides the nasal gunk and sneezing? There are many different respiratory diseases such as mycoplasma G., coryza, and infectious bronchitis, plus others. Some are viruses and some are bacterial, and they tend to all look alike so it's hard to know which one you are dealing with. You can try and treat them with antibiotics such as Tylan 50 1 ml daily by mouth for 5 days (or as a shot for 3 days.) These diseases may come back on them again and again, plus infect any new birds to the flock, so many people will choose to kill chickens with respiratory disease. Here is a list of diseases and medication suggestions: http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/ps044
 

BantamLover21

Crowing
7 Years
Jul 24, 2013
23,660
1,566
426
Help!!!! My chickens have colds! They are sneezing and my special rooster that is normally very aggressive is pitiful. I bought some vetRX I think it is and have been putting that on him. I cleaned his nose and removed all the gunk. This is serious because these chickens are my 12 yr old sons who brought here from his daddy's after his daddy got killed in a tragic motorcycle accident three months ago. Please give me any suggestions

Chickens don't really get "colds" like humans; they get respiratory diseases which are often serious. Some common respiratory diseases include Infectious Bronchitis, Infectious Coryza, and Chronic Respiratory disease (caused by Mycoplasma). Symptoms usually include, depending on the disease, sneezing, coughing, nasal discharge (sometimes bad smelling in the case of Coryza), rattlling/gurgling in the throat, and swelling of the sinuses.

If the respiratory disease is caused by a bacteria, then antibiotics are usually effective. I would recommend purchasing some Tylan50 or Tylan200 injectable (it also comes in a powdered form but that form doesn't work as well) or possibly some Oxytetracycline (sold under names like Terramycin, Duramycin, Tetroxy HCA-280, etc.). You can usually find those antibiotics at a livestock/farm supply store, or order them online. Penicillin most likely will not work, as it is a more narrow-range antibiotic.

The Tylan50 injectable dosage is 1cc for large fowl, .5ccs for bantams, injected into one side of the breast once daily for 5 days. The Tylan200 dosage (just a stronger version of Tylan50) dosage is .5ccs for large-fowl, .1-.3ccs for bantams, injected into one side of the breast once daily for 3-4 days. Alternate the side of the breast that you inject into, and use a small guage needle, as Tylan can make the injection area sore.

The Oxytetracycline (I'm going to abbreviate it OTC) dosage is 1 teaspoon powdered OTC per gallon of drinking water for 7-14 days. Treat for the entire recommended amount of time even if symptoms disappear. Do not give probiotics, dairy products, or Apple Cider Vinegar during treatment with OTC or Tylan.

In the case of a viral disease, antibiotics will not work. The best thing you can do is isolate the affected birds and give them supportive care (encourage them to eat nutritious food, put vitamins/electrolytes in their water, keep them warm and comfortable, etc.). Sometimes, this care will help their immune systems fight off the disease. But if the disease continues, you might consider culling your flock, disinfecting your premises, and then getting a new, disease-free flock.
 

Wyandottes7

Crowing
6 Years
Jul 24, 2013
20,586
1,321
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Chickens get respiratory infections, not colds. Unlike cold in humans, respiratory diseases are more severe. They can stay with a flock for its whole life, appearing during times of stress. Or, they might just be a one time occurrence.

I recommend giving them some probiotis and electrolytes, and well as nutritious foods like scrambled eggs, egg yolk, moistened chicken feed, and yogurt. Make sure that the sick birds aren't in drafts. If all of your birds have the disease, there would be not purpose for isolating them, but if only a couple birds are sick, isolate the sick ones.

If the disease is viral, all you can do is give supportive treatment. However, if it gets worse, or doesn't get better, get some antibiotics. You could start out with a broad-spectrum, water soluable one like Oxytetracycline (Terramycin, Tetroxy HCA-280, and Duramycin are all versions of oxytetracycline). But, you could also try a stronger antibiotic like Tylan50. Tylan50 is one of the best antibiotics. It is given as an injection using a small needle (20-22 gauge) once daily into the breast muscle for five days. Give 1cc for large fowl, .5ccs for bantams, and switch sides of the breast muscle to prevent irritation. Remember to not give any dairy products like probiotics or yogurt while giveing antibiotics.

There is a powdered version of Tylan, but it isn't as easy to find. You can find Tylan in most farm supply stores. It is sold for cattle and large livestock, but is commonly used for chickens. Tylan can be given orally, but this doesn't work as well, and I recommend giving injections instead.

If you've never given a chicken an intramuscular injection, here is a link to some information:http://shilala.homestead.com/injection.html

Here is a chart showing some various medications/treatments/dosages for chickens:https://sites.google.com/a/poultrypedia.com/poultrypedia/medicine-chart

The VetRx that your are giving them may or may not work. It can help birds recover, but in my experience, it really doesn't do a lot. Still, there is no harm in giving it.

Respiratory diseases will never be fully cured. They will remain with your flock, even if you don't notice it all the time. Sometimes your birds will be healthy, but if they experience a lot of stress, symptoms may reapear. Some people would recommend culling an infected flock. However, many people keep birds that have had a respiratory disease, and their birds never have any problems again and are perfectly healthy.

Hope this helps! Make sure your birds get enough to eat and drink.
 
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schnebbles

Songster
7 Years
Jan 6, 2013
678
21
126
Indian Lake, Ohio
Quick question - my chickens were sneezing - I gave them duramycin for 7 days and it seemed to be pretty much going away so I quit it, then noticed silkies sneezing so I started it again (only a few days off) - anyhow my bantam cochin is acting ill, I picked her up and she sounded weezy and looked like she was breathing a bit out of her mouth. Put VetRx on her - SHOULD I BRING HER INSIDE? my chickens seem so tempermental to the weather. They have a clean coop, are allowed out all day so they get wet if it rains (usually they try and stay in the coop) but they get the damp, cold weather (40's at night lately).
 

Wyandottes7

Crowing
6 Years
Jul 24, 2013
20,586
1,321
401
Quick question - my chickens were sneezing - I gave them duramycin for 7 days and it seemed to be pretty much going away so I quit it, then noticed silkies sneezing so I started it again (only a few days off) - anyhow my bantam cochin is acting ill, I picked her up and she sounded weezy and looked like she was breathing a bit out of her mouth. Put VetRx on her - SHOULD I BRING HER INSIDE? my chickens seem so tempermental to the weather. They have a clean coop, are allowed out all day so they get wet if it rains (usually they try and stay in the coop) but they get the damp, cold weather (40's at night lately).

If only a few of your birds are sick, it would be helpful to bring them inside. However, if you have a lot of sick birds, it would not be very plausible to bring them all inside. They will probably be just fine outside, as long as it isn't too drafty.
 

schnebbles

Songster
7 Years
Jan 6, 2013
678
21
126
Indian Lake, Ohio
I only have 7 chickens and the cochin just looks worse, like sleepy kind of. She's the only one I was contemplating bringing in. I seem to be having bad luck so far with my babies. They are all tucked in and the cochin should stay warm where she is, I hate to put heat out already, I think that's for worse winter weather.
 

Eggcessive

Addict
Premium Feather Member
10 Years
Apr 3, 2011
61,851
54,414
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southern Ohio
Just start with a fresh quart mixed correctly. The bag or container should give directions for a 1 gallon container--just divide that by 4. May not have harmed them if they didn't drink too much.
 

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