Medicating full grown hens?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Flycropper, Dec 19, 2008.

  1. Flycropper

    Flycropper Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 8, 2008
    Central Arkansas
    I am thinking about adding to my small flock. There are some pullets and full grown hens in another town. I want to get a few more as a rescue operation but also to add to what I have.

    These birds act healthy but they don't look as nice as mine. Their combs/waddles have been pecked at. They are not as bright red as my hens but more dull/dark red. They smell bad. They pretty much live outside. Their coop is way too small for the number of birds on the land.

    If I get a couple or three, I am going to quarantine them for at least a month or more to make sure they are not sick. They are free ranging birds and pretty much have been fending for themselves. I doubt they have had good protein/nutrients or medicated feed. During the quarantine period I'd like to get them fat and happy and healthy.

    While they are quarantined should I feed them medicated feed like medicated chick starter? Or is there something else I could feed them that would be good for them while they are quarantined. Some medication that they may have missed out on as chicks?

    What else should I be looking for in the quarantined hens?

    I don't plan on eating any of their eggs while they are quarantined.
     
    Last edited: Dec 19, 2008
  2. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude Premium Member

    During quarantine, you do not want to medicate them with antibiotics. A Game Bird Breeder feed would be a good start for their "renovation". You can certainly dust them for lice and mites, put unfiltered Apple Cider Vinegar (with the sediment) in their water. A couple tablespoons to a gallon in a plastic waterer. Nutrition is fine, but do not give any antibiotics. You do not want to mask symptoms.
    Look for bright, clear eyes, clear nares (nostrils), check inside the mouths for cankers, combs and wattles for a fungal infection called favus, legs for scaly leg mites, etc. Listen to their breathing, etc. Just observe them closely. Be careful with sanitation-wash hands and change clothes after tending to them every day.
    Quarantine should be for at least 4 weeks, preferably 5-6. That will not guarantee that they are not carriers, but it will go a long way toward determining if they have something that will show itself soon.
    You need to be sure of what you will do if some respiratory disease pops up with them. Think about that now, before you must make a decision.
     
  3. Flycropper

    Flycropper Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 8, 2008
    Central Arkansas
    What does favus look like?

    I noticed one of the birds had a powdery substance at the base of it's beak that wiped off easily with a rag but her comb and waddle were clear. Think that might be a fungus?
     
    Last edited: Dec 19, 2008
  4. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude Premium Member

    It looks like peeling skin and big white scaly patches on the comb and face. My dear departed rooster, Hawkeye, had favus when I rescued him from the muddy, dark hole of a pen he was living in. You treat it with stuff like you use for athlete's foot, basically. Here is a picture of him right after we got him.
    [​IMG]
     
  5. Poohbear

    Poohbear On a Time Out

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    Nov 12, 2008
    Texas
    I watched a judge at the poultry show SMELLING the chickens breath and later asked him why. He said that a sure sign of a sick chicken is "Stinky Breath". He would hold them cradled in his left arm and open their mouth open with his right hand, then lean down to smell their breath. You might want to check for "Stinky Breath when you buy chickens. Worming and lousing would be a MUST for new quarantined fowl. Leg ointment for leg "scaley mites" and some disinfectant "wet wipes" for their face and feet. Maybe a quick shot of flea and tick spray that has "Permethrin".
     

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