lethargic and "fluffy" - what's wrong?

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

  1. tleventer

    tleventer Out Of The Brooder

    Oct 18, 2010
    Have an EE hen... roughly 2 months old... that is acting weird. All the others "rush" for food when we feed them... she lags behind. I have seen her eat and drink but she mostly stands around near the heat lamp area, looking "fluffy" like she's cold. I watched her the other night after I fed them and watched her move... stand... move ... stand... move... stand. The weird part is that each time she started to move it took her some time because she was literally standing on her own feet. that pretty much convinced me to isolate her. She's in a cage in our laundry room. Again... seen her drink (haven't seen her eat in there but haven't been watching 24/7) and can see a bit of poo, but mostly she is still standing or laying around all fluffy like she's cold.

    Any ideas what's wrong with her? Want to help her but don't know what to do. And if I can't help her, I don't want her to suffer. Thanks for the suggestions!
  2. Kittymomma

    Kittymomma Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 9, 2009
    Olympia, WA
    At that age and with only the info. you've given (see the please read sticky at the top of the emergencies section) my first though is cocci. If that is what is going on you need to treat with Corid (my fav) or Sulmet right away. The other will probably start showing symptoms soon to. Cocci can kill very quickly, but it usually responds very well to treatment too.
  3. tleventer

    tleventer Out Of The Brooder

    Oct 18, 2010
    Family who feed in the morning says that she's been acting this way for several days... close to a week. Everyone else is doing ok. Also, just took a look at her before typing this message. hubby turned her upside down (head down) and we got quite a bit of clear liquid coming out of her beak. ???

    Sorry... I'll go back and read the sticky. But thank you for the reply.
  4. birdicus7

    birdicus7 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 17, 2010
    Coatesville, PA
    Cocci symptoms make the bird look "fluffy" but so can a sour crop/impacted crop. You can also check for sour smell from the birds beak too. Do a search for these things and you will find tons of good info to help.
  5. jjthink

    jjthink Overrun With Chickens

    Jan 17, 2007
    New Jersey
    A week like that is an eternity in chickendom. She is very ill. You need to get to the bottom of it quickly or you may lose her. I would not turn her upside down. 'Fluffy' means "I feel really bad.'

    Since she's been ill this long, if you can take her to an avian vet you may save time. Alternatively, Peter Brown from First State Vet Supply (it will come up if you google) will do a phone consult - not as up close and personal, and can't do any tests that way, but he may be able to help based on symptoms.

    To help BYC help her, any and all hints that can give clues would be helpful - e.g. what is her diet, when was she last seen eating well, condition of her poop, etc etc etc.

    Do provide her with a comfy warm (it's good that you brought her in) quiet stress free area to rest (with food and water very close) and observe her closely.

    Last edited: Dec 8, 2010
  6. emjay

    emjay Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 6, 2009
    I had two seperate incidents with cocci, one from two different flocks. at that about age. I seperated the one, and treated the entire flock on the second one, just to be safe.
    I gave them sulphamethazine, and followed the treatment to the end. I had no losses, both birds made a full recovery.
    good luck.

    if there is bloody stool, and you will notice that !! fluffed up, lethargic, in a corner , most likely cocci.
  7. tleventer

    tleventer Out Of The Brooder

    Oct 18, 2010
    Thanks for the replies. I'm at work, but was told she was 'the same' when I called a bit ago... and all the others are still fine. I've seen her drink and seen her interested in food, but not much.

    sulphamethazine... where can I get that? figure I should know even if it won't help in this particular case. I'll check her crop tonight.
  8. Judy

    Judy Chicken Obsessed Staff Member Premium Member

    Feb 5, 2009
    South Georgia
    You can get Corid at the feed store, and hopefully the sulfa drug too.

    Turning a bird upside down can make them vomit, too. Best heed the advice above and get a cocci treatment on board tonight if possible.
  9. FrenchToast

    FrenchToast "Draft Apple Ridge" a Bit from Heaven

    Jan 10, 2010
    UP North WI
    Just an FYI that Dr Peter Brown with First State Vet Supply is not a veterinarian. I asked him myself but that doesn't mean he doesn't know his stuff.

    Anyway, the clear fluid may have just been water the chick had just drank. I noticed the same thing once on a healty chick. Just don't turn upside down because they could choke on the fluid.

    Corrid is my drug of choice for cocci. I have used it and it worked everytime. I have not tried the Sulmet since my understanding is that if given the wrong dose or for to long of a duration it can do harm to the kidneys, liver etc.

    You can find a small bottle of corrid at a local farm supply store, Fleet Farm or Farm & Fleet stores here in Wis as well as online, I think Jeffers carries it in their livestock dept (cattle) It runs about $12 a bottle or now their is a small package of powder which costs a bit more (about $16) but will last a long long time.

    Maybe put a lamp near one side of the cage so she/he can get close to it if it needs the heat. I use one of those gooseneck lamps (with bendable) neck with a 60watt bulb above the plastic tub I use for a brooder. Works great. I start out with a higher watt bulb then decrease the wattage as the chicks get older. Also depends on how low you lower the lamp.

    Good luck, keep us posted.

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