HELP! Sick Hen in with Week Old Babies! What to do?


10 Years
May 18, 2010
I went out to check on the girls this morning and I have my first sick hen ever
. Apparently there's something going around according to the feed store employee, so I picked up some duramycin just in case. Well, I think I jinxed us
. Should I isolate her right away? Start dosing the whole flock right away? They are on an automatic waterer so I'd have to throw in a nipple waterer real quick. Also, how much duramycin to how much water?

Her symptoms:
breathing heavily from her mouth, sneezing, congestion

Thought I'd fill one of these out:
1) What type of bird , age and weight.
1. EE, 10 months 2. GLW, 10 months
2) What is the behavior, exactly.
1. mouth-breathing, nasal congestion, sneezing, mild honking noise when breathing, decrease in appetite.
2. chest congestion, cough-like gasping every few minutes, lethargy, decrease in appetite

3) How long has the bird been exhibiting symptoms?
less than 24 hours
4) Are other birds exhibiting the same symptoms?
similar, but different
5) Is there any bleeding, injury, broken bones or other sign of trauma.
6) What happened, if anything that you know of, that may have caused the situation.
I have no idea, unless one of the chicks we brought in for our broody was infected, but the mother hen nor any of the 9 babies have been affected...and there are 4 other chickens in the coop showing no symptoms
7) What has the bird been eating and drinking, if at all.
layer pellets and fresh water (now with vitamins/electrolytes and duramycin added)
8) How does the poop look? Normal? Bloody? Runny? etc.
slightly more watery than usual
9) What has been the treatment you have administered so far?
duramycin in water as well as added vitamins/electrolytes, added only a few hours after symptoms were noticed
10 ) What is your intent as far as treatment? For example, do you want to treat completely yourself, or do you need help in stabilizing the bird til you can get to a vet?
I have no idea...I've never had a sick bird before so I don't know
11) If you have a picture of the wound or condition, please post it. It may help.
12) Describe the housing/bedding in use
8x6 house-style coop with a 8x16 run with gravel as the substrate and access to the yard when supervised. bedding is pine shavings
Last edited:
I would absolutely isolate her AND dose the whole flock.
Sure hope all goes well for you and your birds.
Ok thanks, she's isolated in the dog run (might have to clip her wing to keep her in there) and I'm mixing the duramycin right now. How much medication per gallon of water?

Should the babies be dosed as well?
Oh boy...two of them have it. I'm separating mama and babies right away. I'm running out of places to put them!

2 with symptoms in the dog run who were FINE yesterday
4 still in the coop
mama and 9 babies in a 4x4 rat playpen in the shop
8 bantam chicks in the brooder in a separate room of the shop

I need to know if I should just dose everyone, including the chicks and the bantams who were raised separately.
Last edited:
I bet they all need some antibiotics, but not sure of the dose for chicks, I bet it would be a smaller dose. I THINK I read 1 talbespoon per gallon of water, but I am not sure call the feed store they may have someone who knows.. good luck. at least give the chicks a drop of ACV in there water, don't give ACV and antibiotics in the same water bowl
Human Encyclopedia

Registered: 01/11/2007
Posts: 4871
E-mail PM Re: CRD - Duramycin dosage for chickens?Here is the info altho you will in my opinion be best served (to ensure the proper dosage and concentration) by calling the number given at the bottom of the page and asking a service representative (you want the 800 mg concentration) ... they are usually very helpful and will ensure you get the correct info for the smaller amount you need.
excerpt (important):
"....Tetracycline Hydrochloride Soluble Powder
Duramycin 10 Caution
Prepare fresh solutions at least once a day; solutions are not stable for more than 24 hours. Use as sole source of tetracycline. Deliver the recommended dosage level in divided doses. Diagnosis should be reconsidered if improvement is not noticed within 3 days. The concentration of drug required in medicated water must be adequate to compensate for variations in the age and class of animals, feed consumption, and environmental temperature and humidity, each of which affects water consumption..."

I just copied this from a search, I put in duramycin dosage in the search and got this, there is a web site in the text to look up more info
Thanks! I asked the feed store guy and he said 1 teaspoon of antibiotic. I have not given any to mama and babies yet because I'm not sure on the concentration, but I'll be adding some vitamins and electrolytes to their water for now. I think I'll do ACV in one water dish and antibiotic/vitamins/electrolytes in another. Mama and babies are good so far in their pen in the shop. The brooder babies are fine as well, and the other four girls in the coop seem fine for today, however I will be cleaning out and disinfecting the coop. They too have antibiotic water available but are hesitant to drink it.

The two sick girls do not look good at all. One is coughing or something, I can hear raspy sounds when she breathes, and the other has a stuffy nose and sneezes. She also makes quiet honking noises when she breathes and is breathing out of her mouth. They were not interested in food or water when I offered it

Would VetRx help either one of them? Our feed store doesn't get any until Thursday, but I can go to the next town and pick some up at Wilco if it will help either one of them.
Last edited:
Now the question do you give them water when they aren't interested? Neither of them really want to drink anything right now

New posts New threads Active threads

Top Bottom