Newly Adopted 7week pullet is lethargic, runny poop

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by NYC feather fam, Feb 23, 2014.

  1. NYC feather fam

    NYC feather fam Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 25, 2011
    Staten Island, NY
    Just adopted 2 rescue pullets from the local feed store yesterday. They were rescued by the ASPCA from somewhere in Queens within the last 3 or 4 days. They appear to be about 6-7 weeks old or older. They are fully feathered, not too leggy but their combs are not yet developed.

    One pullet seems energetic and perky. Her eyes are bright and she takes notice when I come in the room (I have them in a brooder in a spare room of my house) She eats and drinks and displays normal scratching and preening behaviors.

    The other bird is clearly less well. Her eyes are not as bright and she lies down in the crate often. She does eat and drink but less readily than the other. Her vent is dirty with white poop streaked on her feathers. She also does this weird thing I've never seen before. She extends her neck and opens her mouth almost like she was going to crow but no sound comes out...it does not seem to be a normal behavior, it looks like some sort of distress/gasping motion. I have not noticed any coughing, sneezing or wheezing but her mouth is dirty.

    I'm going to separate the birds of course. I have been feeding them medicated starter and water with apple cider vinegar. I do not know if they have been vaccinated and I know nothing of what conditions they were in previously.

    I have experience with a bird that had coccidiosis which was no fun. She recovered but never really thrived and I eventually had to cull her which was quite awful. I want to give this bird a chance but am on the fence on whether to cull now or give her some time.

    Thanks in advance for all the awesome responses I know I'll get from this excellent forum. =)
     
  2. Impress

    Impress Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Are you experienced with gapeworm? That is the first thing I would think of with a chicken stretching out with its mouth open as if gasping for air. They can be nasty creatures. The first thing I would do would be to check for signs of gapeworm, get a swab down her throat to see if you see any. It can be treated, but if she is lethargic I would look to treat her sooner than later.

    Ivermectin will treat it, as gapeworms are a form of roundworm. Anytime I rescue or purchase full grown birds, I always just go ahead and do a full worming of them, just in case.
     
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2014
  3. Cindy A

    Cindy A Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 9, 2014
    I have 21/2 week old chicks, and I had one that was showing those gasping signs, could I worm the chicks without harming them?
     
  4. NYC feather fam

    NYC feather fam Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 25, 2011
    Staten Island, NY
    I was planning to worm with Wazine 17 anyway. Will that treat the gapeworms too? I have no idea where these birds came from or what conditions they were in. I will take a look for the gapeworms. I want to protect the rest of my flock as best I can by treating these guys with basically anything necessary....

    A vet I spoke to advised starting them on Gallimycin and Tylan. Thoughts on that?
     
  5. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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    Gasping with no sound is sometimes aspergillosis or brooder pneumonia from molded litter that has gotten wet. Gaping is usually a sign of respiratory disease, since gapeworm is very rare. Gapeworm would be treated by fenbendazole or SafeGuard liquid goat wormer 1/2 ml per each 2.2 lb for 3 straight days, then wait 10 days , and repeat for 3 days. Wazine and Ivermectin will not work--Wazine treats only roundworms, and most worms have built up resistance to Ivermectin. Here is some info on aspergillosis: http://www.thepoultrysite.com/diseaseinfo/7/aspergillosis
     
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2014
  6. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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    I would also check the crop at different times (especially in early morning when it should be empty) for impacted crop. It is normal for chickens to move their necks around to adjust their crops.
     
  7. NYC feather fam

    NYC feather fam Out Of The Brooder

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    Staten Island, NY
    Thanks for the info. I feel silly to ask this but.... how to do you check the crop?
     
  8. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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  9. Cindy A

    Cindy A Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 9, 2014
    Thanks for the link, it gave me good insight to how the chickens feed themselves.
     

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