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I am worried my Silkie hen may have a disease..

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Wild--Star, Nov 29, 2015.

  1. rebrascora

    rebrascora Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hi

    Sorry, I didn't mean to suggest in any way at all that you didn't feed your hens well. It's just that when one starts feeling ill, they sometimes don't feel confident enough to muscle in with the others to get enough, or they appear to be eating but are not actually swallowing anything.... perhaps just picking up food and dropping it again.... but gradually they get weaker and can't pretend to be normal anymore and just huddle somewhere. By then, they have already eaten into their body reserves and lost condition and have nothing left to fight the illness..

    Anyway, it's good to hear that she has perked up a bit after her bath and great that you are already familiar with tube feeding.
    I have Marek's in my flock so I know how difficult it is to have a sick bird and to hope for the best but know that the worst is more likely to happen. All you can do is do your best for her and make her as comfortable as possible.

    Good luck
     
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  2. casportpony

    casportpony Poop Inspector General Premium Member

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    Make sure you tube lots of fluids before tubing food. I usually start by giving 2-3 ml per 100 grams, repeat in 60-90 minutes if crop has cleared, then once or twice again every two hours.

    -Kathy
     
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  3. Wild--Star

    Wild--Star Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thank you, I realized you weren't trying to say I didnt feed them well dont worry xx i was just saying that I do make sure they have proper nutrition so you didnt think otherwise but I totally get it, if she is unwell she may not be eating right and it very well could be why she is displaying certain behaviors. Thank you heaps for the info i appreciate it, as soon as i buy a new plastic syringe (hopefully tomorrow) i will start to properly tube feed her.
    I checked her this morning before i left for my last day of a tafe course i have been doing and she seems the same she has been lately but better then yesterday thankfully.
    I hope your flock are doing well too x
     
  4. Wild--Star

    Wild--Star Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks, will do x i fed her some mushy food yesterday and she ate a bit, not via plastic syringe yet but i will hopefully get one tomorrow and hopefully get some antibiotics soon.
     
  5. Wild--Star

    Wild--Star Chillin' With My Peeps

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    She is isolated from the others and I have been tube feeding her and she has been taking most of it so that is good but now she seems to be having head spasms, i think they are voluntary but I dont know why she is doing this?
    though she had developed a huge hard lump on the top left side of her breast. I dont think its the crop as that is on the right side isnt it? But i am unsure so it may very well actually be an impacted crop. It seems to be bothering her and i think thats why she keeps shaking her head so much.


    She has been laying on her side mostly and will rarely sit up straight and uses her wings for balance. She seems to have trouble using her right leg (right and left is from my view when looking straight at her) but i dont think it is fully paralyzed or anything but it is always splayed out in front of her. She has also been twisting her head right backwards. She still seems very unwell and gasps for air.

    I dont know what to do... they dont have a vet near me that knows about chickens and apparently my hens were not inoculated when we bought them.

    Now my other silkie doesnt look well according to my mother who says she has been displaying the signs that the other hen first had before she got really sick. So i am out of options. I dont know how to help them, especially if i do not know whats wrong.
    I really need advice, this is really stressing me out, i havnt been sleeping properly over it. I just want them to get better i do not want to lose again, i just wish i could help...............



    Please, does anyone know anything that can help me?
     
    Last edited: Dec 5, 2015
  6. rebrascora

    rebrascora Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'm afraid that sounds very much like Marek's Disease.... I currently have a legbar cock in a similar state. I've tried for over a week to nurse him but his condition is deteriorating and he is now struggling with his breathing and I'm psyching myself up to cull him as his quality of life is getting to the point of no return. It's a horrible illness. It is heart breaking and you are not alone in going through this. You might want to try human anti virus drugs.... if you read the "Not an emergency, Marek's in the flock" thread you will find a little more info there about it as some people on that thread are trying it.

    The lump may be a tumour or it may be her crop not emptying. You are saying it is on the right, but then later you say you are calling the right as your right as you look at the bird.... which would be the bird's left?. Am I right?...If so, that would suggest it's more likely to be a tumour.

    Personally I've come to the conclusion that all I can do is make them as comfortable as possible and give them the chance to pull through on their own with supportive care from me but no intrusive procedures, rather than trying to push food and drugs into them etc as that just stresses them more and stress makes the Marek's worse. That is just my experience in dealing with the Marek's birds that I have had.

    I have found that it actually becomes mentally easier to deal with it once you know that it is Marek's and there is not a lot you can do.... it kind of takes the pressure off you to try to heal them.

    Last winter/spring I had one pull round from being very sick and scheduled for culling, just by giving her a friend in sick bay. Perhaps if you put your other poorly looking silkie in with her, they will rally each other. Mine started with an almighty fight even though they were both sick/disabled, then they settled down to a solid friendship and both were eventually reintegrated into the free range flock in the spring..... just so you know there can be hope.

    Best wishes

    Barbara .
     
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  7. slordaz

    slordaz Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I would also recommend adding a clove of chopped garlic to feed and using a warm wet paper towel to try and clean off the discharge. It will help her be more comfortable. I did it for mine 2x a day and she got over it.
     
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  8. Wild--Star

    Wild--Star Chillin' With My Peeps

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    will do thank you x
     
  9. Wild--Star

    Wild--Star Chillin' With My Peeps

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    All right thank you, i hadn't been able to find much info on Marek's but i'll look into it. I'm sorry about your chickens. I am not sure I want to put the other silkie in with her as yet as she seems relatively normal except for a few minor things but if she gets a lot worse a I will put the two hens together. I am unsure if the lump is a tumor or her crop as it would be the chickens right but my left. Now it seems to be more in the middle, its quite hard to tell, by the way she positions herself. If it is her crop i would say it is an impacted crop and i do not know what i would do for that but i am unsure.
    At least i know that it looks like Mareks so I can know what I am in for.
    There is one vet that may or may not know something about chickens but it would cost $85 just to get her looked at. So I could go in and spend $85 just for them to tell me they know nothing. So I dont know if a vet trip would be worth it as she looks very poorly but the thing is, she is holding on and fighting and i just wish i could help her but it doesnt look like she'l make it but I go in every morning and she is still fighting for life. I dont want her to suffer but I dont know if there is any hope of her getting better.

    I will look into antibiotics.


    Thanks heaps though, you've been a big help and i hope you have luck with your flock. Just in case, would you be able to tell me a little bit about Mareks disease, I will look it up anyway but a brief first hand description would be helpful. Thank you again x
     
  10. Wild--Star

    Wild--Star Chillin' With My Peeps

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    This does sound like Marek's Disease, t is awful. I went onto this link https://www.backyardchickens.com/a/the-great-big-giant-mareks-disease-faq and it was very informative. I am about to go onto the link suggested above: https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/741957/not-an-emergency-mareks-in-the-flock
    It very well could be at tumor then and i think her leg and wing is partially paralyzed.
    Poor little chicken....

    I am sorry for anyone who has to go through this...
    If I ever get chickens again I will insure they are inoculated. I just really hope it doesn't spread through the flock.
     

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