My New Chickens: 8 Weeks Old/Blue Orpingtons. Their 1st night...

smartgirlchic

In the Brooder
May 18, 2015
31
1
41
I am SO sad right now. After working so hard to keep our new friends safe, we woke up this morning (after their first night with us) to find they have bloody stool. I checked with a local chicken raiser (sent her the pictures) and she confirmed: Coccidiosis.

I know we didn't do anything that caused this issue, as they've been here for mere hours and these are the only 2 birds we own. But ouch! My husband just ran to the feed store to pick up medicine. (I also alerted the person who raised the chicks so they can treat their flock.) We are going to start treatment immediately. I hope it isn't too late. SO depressed right now.

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smartgirlchic

In the Brooder
May 18, 2015
31
1
41
Thank you. I took some fecal matter to the vet to have it tested. (I don't want to treat them unnecessarily.) The vet sent me the results but the answer is unclear. (The test doesn't say positive/negative, it just states the name of the test.) So I called to verify and of course-they are on lunch! So I'm waiting another 30 minutes for an answer. I am SO frustrated right now.

The guy who sold me the chickens has not responded to my phone message or text message. I have no idea what is happening with his poor chickens. (He has 50.)

This has been a rough start. :(
 

drumstick diva

Still crazy after all these years.
Premium Feather Member
11 Years
Aug 26, 2009
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Out to pasture
Go ahead and treat for coccidiosis. If you don't treat soon enough, the chicks can die from it. It won't hurt them to treat for it while you wait to find out for sure. But delaying can.
June is absolutely right. Don't wait to treat. They obviously came infected with cocci - and the person who sold them to you knows it. Once you get them through this you may want to have them treated for mites, etc. They probably were not receiving the best of care in any area of keeping.
 
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smartgirlchic

In the Brooder
May 18, 2015
31
1
41
Thanks for the tips and caring!

Thought I would share an update:
I started treating my chicks before I heard back from the vet. As of this afternoon (24 hours after treatment began) there is no more blood in their stools. Phew! I think they are doing all right? Here's a pic:



(So pretty!)

Anyways I do have a couple of questions I would love some feedback on please?

HEALTH: My babies are about 8 weeks old. They are still "babies" (juveniles), so I guess they need a fair mount of sleep. I know too, the last couple of days have seen a lot of changes for them AND they were obviously sick. But I have no clue how much sleep would be considered normal even without these factors? I don't know my chickens yet, so I'm starting at a disadvantage with all these weird extras going on while we get acquainted. Can someone please give me a ballpark idea what a normal amount of sleep would look like for a chicken at this age?

(The reason I'm asking is, they are sleeping so much more today than they did the first couple of days. I would like to think they are feeling more comfortable with their surroundings and me, but since they are fighting a parasite, I worry that they are suddenly sleeping more? The first couple of days they were up and around and talking A LOT! Today they've officially explored their nesting boxes and have huddled in there and slept a number of hours. I just went out there and talked with them, which rousted them. They got up and ate and drank and talked to me. They pooped-bloodless and otherwise normal. I kind of think they think I'm a rooster because they seem to wait until I'm standing over them to eat or drink.)

TRAINING: Orpingtons are obviously a sweet breed. I want them to be accustomed to handling, as these are more than egg producers, they are my friends! Since they've arrived I've spent a fair amount of time with them in their coop. I clean the coop several times per day (in particular because of the Coccidiosis), check their food, check their water, etc. Additionally I just sit in the coop and talk to them and let them walk around me for at least an hour. (Today I've spent more time standing in the coop to encourage them to eat and especially drink their medicated water!) I don't want to push them on being petted/touched, particularly as they are not feeling well, but I don't want to wait too long and have them abhor being handled. Any thoughts or tips on this?

Thanks so much to everyone who has responded the last couple days!

P.S. The guy I bought the chickens from finally called me back. He was sorry the chickens are sick and thanked me for letting him know. He says he will medicate his own flock and told me to let him know how things go.
 

junebuggena

Crowing
Apr 17, 2015
23,102
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Long Beach, WA
Sleeping in the nest boxes is a bad habit to start. Block their access to them until they are closer to laying age. My chickens are most active in the morning and evening. They lounge around and nap during the day. It's normal for growing chicks to nap frequently.
 

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