Marek's or botulism poisioning, please help

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by dixie91480, Apr 6, 2012.

  1. dixie91480

    dixie91480 New Egg

    Jan 20, 2011
    Hi there, this is my first time to post a question/thread here, and I know this subject has been done a million times, but I really am confused as to what my chickens may have. I noticed about 5 days ago that my white faced black spanish hen(who is a little over 1 year old and was vaccinated for Marek's) comb was very droopy. Then she started isolating herself from the rest of the chickens at night. She seemed to be eating and drinking ok, just seemed a little depressed. Then 2 days ago, she started stumbling all around the yard. She would try to run, but would fall over. Her neck also seemed to be able to turn all the way around(excorcist style). I separated her and tried giving her some antibiotics in her water and fresh food. I honestly don't think she is eating or drinking much, because there were not many droppings around her. Now today my gold laced wyandotte(also a little over a year, but not vaccinated) is exhibiting the same "drunken behavior" and stumbling all over the yard. I separated her as well. I was confused as to whether it was meraks(because of their ages, and the one being vaccinated) or botulism poisioning, because it has been very hot/humid and wet here, and I also saw my hens(I have about 20 + 2 roosters) fighting over a dead mouse about a week and a half ago. Also, my husband let the chickens wander into our outdoor building I usually keep shut, and I know I put down rat poison in there, but although not 100% sure, I don't believe they found any of that. They are free ranged, but it is a fairly small backyard, however they did have access to a garden area that was full of wet leaves and stuff we just tilled over for our garden. If anyone thinks they might know what this is, and how I can treat it, please let me know. I can not afford a visit to the vet. I am mostly concerned that the rest of my flock is going to sicken. Also, I guess I should mention that we have a farm in another location, and I recently brought 2 pullets aged about 6 months from there and integrated them into the rest of my flock here at home. We have not had anything like this in any of our chickens out in the other location. Also, I have been keeping chickens in this spot for 4 years, and never had this problem. Thank You
  2. pigcoon

    pigcoon Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 22, 2009
    Just wanted to respond though I'm not an expert. With my chickens that had Marek's it was more of a limping, then a paralysis, not a drunken stumbling, and no weird head turning.

    Earlier I had a chicken that had a bad upper respiratory infection and she was mainly droopy and not eating much. I hear you on the vet bills; I'm out about $500 from treating my (now deceased) hens.

    I hope someone else can help you figure this out.
  3. lincolnsilkies

    lincolnsilkies Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 27, 2011
    Lincoln Nebraska
    There are a few post on here for treating for botulism a couple different flushes one with epson salt and the other is with molasses the sooner you get the treatment started the better chance she will have
  4. Happy Chooks

    Happy Chooks Moderator Staff Member

    Jul 9, 2009
    Northern CA
    My Coop
    Sounds like poisoning to me. Good luck.

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