Is this an upper respiratory infection? What should I do?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by MKandtheforce, Aug 28, 2013.

  1. MKandtheforce

    MKandtheforce Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My partridge silkie Chewbacca is sick. I've got her separated from the other hens and she's camped out in the garage right now. I just have no idea what to do and would like to do something to make her feel more comfortable, if not cure her.

    I had thought she was molting-- one of my other birds had been showing signs, so I figured that she might be molting, too. So I didn't really pay attention over the first few days that she was acting "slow". Finally, yesterday, I picked her up and looked at her face and was horrified by the nasal discharge and just the general look of her face.

    She has clear nasal discharge that feels rather sticky. Her feathers, dirt, and shavings keep getting stuck to it. It's making bubbles on her beak, and though I try wiping her beak every now and then, it just comes back. She's keeping her eyes firmly shut-- I can't tell if she's able to open them at all or if she's just determined to keep them close. She's breathing through her mouth for the most part. I had a friend over to take a look (she's more experienced with chickens than I am) and she also noted that there's an odd smell, but it doesn't smell ridiculously disgusting like it had been on a sick chicken she had. I saw Chewie eating this morning, so at least she's getting something in her.

    Is there anything I can do to help her? :( Thanks, all. This is my first time being a chicken-nurse, so I want to try and be as helpful as I can.
     
  2. Wyandottes7

    Wyandottes7 Overrun With Chickens

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    Yes, that does sound like a respiratory infection. If there's a smell, it could be Coryza, but there are many other respiratory diseases that are very similar.

    If you haven't already done so, isolate her. This will hopefully prevent her from contaminating the other birds, but they may have already contracted the disease. Keep her in a nice large cage/dog crate. Give her electrolytes and probiotics, as well as yogurt and some scrambed eggs. Make sure that she continues to eat enough.

    I would recommend getting some Tylan50. This antibiotic is one of the best antibiotics for respiratory infections. You should be able to find it at a livestock supply store. It is an injectable antibiotic (though there is also a water soluable form, but that is probably more difficult to find), so you'll need syringes and 22gauge needles.

    The dosage for Tylan50 is 1cc for large fowl, .5ccs for bantams, given for five days. Inject it into the breast muscle alternating sides each day, as Tylan can irritate the breast muscle. You should notice improvement by the third day.

    If the disease is viral, Tylan will not help. It will only prevent a secondary bacterial infection.

    Hope this helps!
     
  3. MKandtheforce

    MKandtheforce Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'll get on the yogurt and scrambled eggs.

    Is it true that I can't eat the eggs if I give a chicken antibiotics? Is there a way to tell if the infection is viral or bacterial?
     
  4. christie22701

    christie22701 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Another thing to look for is bubbles in the eyes. Are you seeing any of those when she DOES open her eyes? I would probably guess that you are dealing with infectious Coryza. I just treated my entire flock for it. You want to keep in mind that we are only guessing and that if you decide to "treat and keep", this disease won't ever go away. She will always be a carrier. Her symptoms may go away but if you put her back in with your flock she will most likely infect the rest of them if she hasn't already. I was told to cull my flock, but when I discovered the entire dozen were infected I decided to "treat and keep". Egg production will drop 10 to 40% and may or may not recover. Mine have not started producing eggs again as of yet. I completed a five day regimen of Tylan 50 last Wednesday. They are feeling better and do not seem as lethargic. You won't be able to add to your flock or the new chickens will get sick. You can't sell or trade a chicken that has been exposed to Coryza because it is a carrier now and it can also be genetically passed through eggs (if you are hatching). Coryza is VERY contagious and the others will become infected within a couple days if exposed. It may take up to several days to see improvement. I have a couple that still have crusty nares but haven't had the foul smell since about day four of treatment. You need to check out your other chickens for symptoms. Check also for a gurgling when the breathe, like bubbles in the lungs. That is also a sign of Coryza. How many chickens do you have? When was the last time you noticed her WELL? If it was more than a few days then watch carefully for signs in the rest of your flock. It only takes about two days to pass from chicken to chicken. You need to start the Tylan 50. If you find Tylan 200 that's okay too, the dosage is almost the same. If you use a 1 inch, 22 gauge syringe, only go into the breast about 1/2 inch. You don't want to go too far in and puncture an organ. Inject at a 45 degree angle. Make sure you find skin. Don't just inject blindly. You could miss and just be squirting into the feathers. Hope the information helps. I will look for updates.
     
    Last edited: Aug 28, 2013
  5. MKandtheforce

    MKandtheforce Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have nine chickens now. Two of them are a little sneezey, but they have no nasal discharge, and they're otherwise active and peppy. I'm not sure what to do about them.

    Is there a good picture of what bubbles in the eyes look like? I looked on google images, but I have no idea which ones have those bubbles. I really hope it's not coryza...
     
  6. settingdusk

    settingdusk Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aha, I have this on a few chicks I got. Bubbly eyes, crusty nasals, mouth breathing that looks like yawning and occasionally one puffy eye. General lethargy, usually the chicks get better after a few days though. I am treating with Vet RX and picking up meds tomorrow.
     
  7. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive True BYC Addict

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  8. christie22701

    christie22701 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Eggcessive taught me a lot of what I know. Listen to him too!
     
    Last edited: Aug 28, 2013
  9. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive True BYC Addict

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    MG can be passed on through hatching eggs, but coryza can't.
     
  10. MKandtheforce

    MKandtheforce Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Phew, I didn't notice eye bubbles on Chewie.

    What has happened, though, is that her eyes are all mucous-y and have crusted shut. I opened one to check for bubbles, and mucous leaked out. I wiped what I could. Should I try prying open the other one? Is there anything I can do for her eyes?
     

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