hen breathing with beak open

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by lambchicks, Dec 8, 2010.

  1. lambchicks

    lambchicks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    1) What type of bird , age and weight. Ameraucana hen, 9 months 4 or 5 pd.
    2) What is the behavior, exactly. holds beak open. gave her some water and then heard a gurgling noise, some whezzing before that. poop is white foamy, would not come off roost this morning., has not laid an egg in many days, as far as I can tell, but my other Ameraucana's have not either. all other breeds that I have are still laying.
    3) How long has the bird been exhibiting symptoms? sincne we let the out this AM
    4) Are other birds exhibiting the same symptoms? no, except the not laying, but the weather is pretty cold here now. high today is 35
    5) Is there any bleeding, injury, broken bones or other sign of trauma. no
    6) What happened, if anything that you know of, that may have caused the situation. nothing
    7) What has the bird been eating and drinking, if at all. dont think so except when i forced her to drink.
    8) How does the poop look? Normal? Bloody? Runny? etc. foamy, white
    9) What has been the treatment you have administered so far? seperated her from flock at this time.
    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 need to self treat, my vet will not do chickens.
    11) If you have a picture of the wound or condition, please post it. It may help.
    12) Describe the housing/bedding in use. bedding is straw, houseing is 8 x 8 with 8 other chickens in that tractor, shared run with 9 others in same run, different tractor.

    Not sure if this is pertinent: her tounge is almost white, not pink like I have seen in the past. Do all chickens have pink tounges?
     
    Last edited: Dec 11, 2010
  2. sben451

    sben451 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have an 18 month old black hen with almost the same symptoms. I put her in a very large dog crate in the garage with a heat lamp in front of the crate(it's in the 30's here). I had suspected gapeworms, but could not see any when I looked down her throat with a flashlight. I went ahead a wormed her anyway, with Ivermectin pour-on (6 drops on her back). Had DH get some broad spectrum antibiotic from the feed store (Duramycin 10). After we figured out the amount to use, we mixed the powder in her drinking water. I'm not sure she's drinking much on her own, so several times a day, I give her as much as I can of the water with the med. mixed in, with an eyedropper. I don't think she is eating much of anything either. I tried yogurt with some layer mash yesterday, but she wouldn't eat. I keep layer pellets in here crate. She seems pretty alert, no nasal or eye discharge, but wheezes when she breathes--and does the open beak breathing (gaping?). I'm afraid she might have a respiratory problem, but we don't have a vet that treats chickens here. She even sounded a littly gurgly this morning, but it was after I got her to take the water with the dropper. [​IMG]
     
  3. lambchicks

    lambchicks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    sben451, what does you hen's poop look like? how long has she been like this? I was thinking about doing the antibiotic thing too. I am trying to find oxine or biophene to hopefully stop it from spreading to my others, but havn't found any yet. let me know what is happening with yours.
     
  4. jjthink

    jjthink Overrun With Chickens

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    So that she doesn't have to use energy to keep warm, keep her in a comfy warm (not hot, but comfy warm) place with quiet and all her needs close at hand.

    My regular vet (kitty, dog) doesn't treat chickens - they usually don't - so I researched and found avian vets. Likely they are around. Also, Peter Brown at First State Vet Supply does inexpensive consults and can send out needed meds, but there will be a time lag...

    JJ

    Edited to add - just reread the title. Open mouth breathing can mean pain, can mean heart issues. I would pretty much conside rthis an emergency.
     
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2010
  5. lambchicks

    lambchicks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks JJ, I am concerned about the stress of seperating her from the rest of the flock. I might bring her in, at least she would be warmer.
     
  6. jjthink

    jjthink Overrun With Chickens

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    Does she have a really good feather-buddy who could keep her company?

    Open mouth breathing really is an emergency.

    You might give her aspirin water for pain relief (1 baby aspirin [81 mg] crushed in 1 cup of drinking water - can dunk favorite fruit bits in aspirin water to get her to get some in her quickly) but this will not obviate the need for urgent medical attention.

    JJ
     
  7. CaliBlueChicken

    CaliBlueChicken Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sorry to hear about your chicken [​IMG] I wish I knew something that could help. The only things I thought of (coming from my nursing assistant training) were to keep her warm, and be careful when feeding so that she doesn't aspirate and get fluid in the lungs. This is just my personal opinion... I wouldn't force feed and risk aspiration just offer liquids and foods. But that is just me. Anyhow, good luck! [​IMG]
     
  8. jjthink

    jjthink Overrun With Chickens

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    Yes, absolutely do not force feed at this point. See if you can just entice her to take choice bits of fruit dunked in aspirin water. If she has no interest in food/water you have an even greater emergency because it means she feels dreadful.
    JJ
     
  9. sben451

    sben451 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My black hen is about the same as earlier. I've had to give her the medicated water with an eyedropper several times today. She has layer pellets in the crate, but I don't think she's eating much, if any at all. She's been like this since Monday AM. She's not wheezing as loudly as before, but I can still hear it a bit. I didn't check her poop--have pine shavings in the bottom of the crate and she may have covered it up. [​IMG]
     
  10. lambchicks

    lambchicks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mine did take some water and a bit or two of raw egg. I am just getting home, and going to go and see if I can get her to take another couple of dips.

    Thanks for all of the replys so far, I was hoping that someone would come along with some more ideas. Help?? anyone?
     

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