New chicken owner and I need help!! Vaccinations etc...

Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by chicksnhorses22, Apr 4, 2012.

  1. chicksnhorses22

    chicksnhorses22 New Egg

    Apr 4, 2012
    HI yall!

    I just bought my first flock of chickens. I have 6 Barred Rocks, 6 Rhode Islands Reds, 2 little things (not sure of their breed), 2 Silkies, and 2 Easter Eggers which leaves me with a total of 18 chickens[​IMG] not sure how I got that many but they are so much fun! My problem is, I bought them from our local farm store and I talked to their "chicken expert" and he told me that all of them were vaccinated at the hatchery blah blah blah.. I went back to pick up my Silkies and Easter Eggers and one worker said they were vaccinated, another said they weren't and yet another said they weren't sure because she thought they came from different hatcheries.. [​IMG]
    I've read sooo many posts on here and finally decided to post my question(s) and see what I can get answered. SO here they are:

    How important are vaccinations? Should I contact all of the places and ask if they indeed have vaccinated the chicks? This would require alot of work to figure out which chicks came from where but I'm totally willing to do it if it's important.
    My BR's and RIR's are already 6-7 weeks old, if they aren't vaccinated can I still vaccinate them? The other six are only about a week and a half.

    My second big question is how long do I keep them on the medicated food? The guy that sold them to at the farm store told me they had to be on the food until they are six weeks old. Is that correct? Or am I doing everything wrong?

    I would really appreciate any and every piece of advice I can get. I know all of the chicken experts on this site can throw their two cents in to help out a poorly educated chicken owner!
  2. Kevin565

    Kevin565 Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    Dec 22, 2009
    [​IMG] . Hopefully one of our many chicken experts can chime in
  3. 4-H chicken mom

    4-H chicken mom Overrun With Chickens

    Aug 3, 2007
    Oberlin, OH
    Hi and :welcome from Ohio. So glad you joined. :thumbsup
  4. bnjrob

    bnjrob Overrun With Chickens

    Dec 31, 2008
    North TX
    Medicated food is an option - not a must. The medication is not an antibiotic, it simply interferes with how the coccidia are able to utilize thiamine in their bodies. Chickens naturally have coccidia, it's when there is an overgrowth that there is a problem.

    There is medication that you can put in the water - the same stuff that is in the medicated feed - once you take them off medicated feed if they show signs of coccidiosis. It is called Amprolium or Corid.

    There are some people who never vaccinate and others that always do. It is a personal choice, unless you are selling or showing birds, in which case there may be rules regarding vaccinations for your chickens.

    Different states have different rules for vaccinations and some vaccinations are not allowed in all states. This is because the vaccines essentially introduce the disease into the chicken, to get the chicken to make antibodies - some states do not want to even bring certain vaccines into the state and the state may require laboratory diagnosis and special permission to vaccinate for certain diseases. There are also diseases that the state may require all of a person's flock to be killed, in order to protect other birds from getting the disease.

    You should do some homework about the rules for vaccinations in your state. The Extension office may be able to help you, the state agriculture office, or you can search online on your state's government website for the applicable codes regarding poultry.

    There are some vaccines that need to be given as boosters - just like in people, so it's probably not a big deal about whether or not your chicks had some vaccinations. Usually, they just get a Marek's vaccination on day one, but I haven't heard that a lot of hatcheries give any of the other vaccinations.

    For more info on vaccinations:
  5. weimarmama

    weimarmama Overrun With Chickens

    Jun 4, 2010
    My Coop
    [​IMG] & [​IMG] from Alabama. Glad you joined us.
  6. chicksnhorses22

    chicksnhorses22 New Egg

    Apr 4, 2012
    Thanks everybody I feel very welcomed here! And bnjrob- Thank you for the info, it's very helpful, I will definintely be doing my homework!
  7. 1muttsfan

    1muttsfan Chicken Obsessed

    Mar 26, 2011
    Upper Peninsula Michigan
    Hi and welcome to BYC from northern Michigan [​IMG]

    I leave mine on medicated feed for at least 6 weeks - or longer if I need to use a bag up.
  8. greymane

    greymane Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 2, 2011
    Snyder County, PA

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