Need advice on which medicine to give


10 Years
Jun 12, 2009
Millwood, VA
My 2 year old redstar hen, Olivia, has been sick for over a month now (maybe 2) I believe that she has coryza. She has been isolated. At first she was VERY ill, and I had to force liquids and electrolytes down her, give her nebulizer treatments with albuterol and saline. She was on baytril for 10 days. She improved, but not all the way. I then tried duramycin, and it did nothing. I then tried sulmet. She seemed to get better, and finally started drinking and eating on her own. After being on sulmet for over a week 1/2 I stopped and for several days I was beginning to think that I could release her back with the flock. A couple of days ago though, her eyes started to water and today they started looking gunky. Right now, I can't afford to buy anything, but I have the following meds on hand: sulmet, duramycin, penacillin injectable (I've given it orally to my dogs and cats before) and cipro. Would any of these possibly help her? Would any of them kill her?
I am also giving her polyvisol, and any treats that she will eat. She loves tomatoes and grapes. I hate to give up on her. She seems to have a pretty strong will to survive.
Thanks for any help you can give.
If this was my bird (sorry to say this) I would cull her. There are not really any respiratory diseases that you can treat with antibiotics (and you have tried a whole bunch of them without knowing that you have a bacterial problem) that do not result in a carrier state. If she got a bit better with antibiotics- this may be bacterial, but it could also be viral with a secondary bacterial infection, or time helped her & not the antibiotic.....Talk to your state veterinary lab, and get her tested- she is likely a risk to the rest of your flock. Best IMO you can hope for is CRD (mycoplasma) as these birds *usually* have relatively minor symptoms- but their laying is reduced and they periodically have flare ups- and are still a risk to other birds.
As sick as she was, I don't think she improved on her own. Puss was pouring out of her eyes and nose and she couldn't eat. She improved a lot on antibiotics, but not all the way. Tylan50 is the one thing I haven't tried. someone else on here suggested cold medicine, that it has helped her chickens, so I'll see if I can get some $ together and try those.
Chickens don't get colds like people get colds. Cold medicine is not going to be very helpful- and many cold medicines contain ingredients that may be downright harmful to your chicken. I would not recommend giving a human cold medicine to your chicken. Vet rx maybe. May last post remains my belief- that you are not dealing with a bacterial infection by itself, or you are suppressing a bacteria and creating a carrier that gets sick again- you have tried several antibiotics- some quite powerful (assuming you gave theraputic dosing here), and you do not have a well bird. Get her tested and find out what you are dealing with IMO. Tylan helps control CRD & coryza, but it is a narrow spectrum antibiotic- and you can't cure coryza and mycoplasma- just suppress it.
If I get her tested by the state vet (is that costly?) and it is coryza, will they want me to put my whole flock down?
Each state will be different- google poultry extension for VA. Often it is a free service- they are looking for the BIG baddies like avian influenza and exotic newcastles. If they find one of those (which- they will likely NOT), they would likely take your flock and many others in some depopulation zone. If they find coryza, they will offer advice which probably should be taken- and it may be depopulate- but it is unlikely they would make you do anything. If it is coryza, you should seriously consider culling- I for one would not want that bird at my house, forever a risk to other birds.....
If you are concerned about what the consequences of having the bird tested besides having the information- ASK the lab before submitting the bird.

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