Not an emergency - help diagnosing 5 month old Americana died Monday.

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by dr1bot, Jan 19, 2011.

  1. dr1bot

    dr1bot New Egg

    Jan 19, 2011
    My wife established a small two hen flock this summer. A Buff Orffington and an Americana. About 3 weeks ago the Americana started to have raspy breathing, a day later she was moaning considerable discomfort - we brought her inside for one night, It was cool and damp but not below freezing, their coop is dry though their run was damp. We treated with antiobiotics and brought a heat lamp into the coop at night. She seemed to improve for a while - raspy breathing was much better, I never noticed any discharge or crusts. Comb color was good and pink. The eyes were clear. She would perch on the roost without a problem.

    There was a possibility of some moldy food - and also we fed them popcorn just before the hen first showed symptoms. Anyway this weekend she got worse, sneezing, coughing, crying/crowing throughout the night. She still was eating, drinking and running around. At about 10 Monday morning I was alerted to trouble by the healthy hen's loud and insistent alarm. The Americana was dead and still warm to the touch. Crop felt normal - maybe very little in it. No sign of discharge or fluid anywhere. Her feathers were in good shape. We buried her 3 feet deep under the orange tree and scattered rose petals on the grave.

    Could this be a non-infectious disease like a heart problem? If it was infectious, I am sure the other bird would have gotten sick too. Not sure if we want to replace her or get out of the chicken raising business. Our Buff is very lonely now, she keeps calling and looking for her coop mate.
  2. GreenGoddess

    GreenGoddess Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 6, 2009
    St Pauls, NC
    [​IMG] I am so sorry to hear about your babies.. It does sound like it was a respiratory issue but there are a million and one cause of it and they can range anywhere from environmental to virus... I would definitely try to find another companion for your lone girl but if you do, please make sure to quarantine the new one for at least 4 weeks to prevent your other girl from contracting anything...

    Please don't give up just because of an unfortunate death... Sometimes things happen that cannot be explained.. You obviously have love for your chickens...

    Goddess [​IMG]
  3. dandelionheart

    dandelionheart Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 15, 2010
    Lafayette, Indiana

    Maybe she sucked in something... you know, like it went down the wrong pipe? We give our girls popcorn too, so maybe she just had some kind of freak issue? I'd wait a while and see if the healthy hen remains healthy... maybe make sure to give her plenty to do, hanging cabbage, toys, etc... and then find a local healthy flock (someone you know?) so that you don't have to wait 30 days keeping them seperate. IMO why wait 30 days if you have a trusted friend that has had healthy birds for 30 days, that is just added stress for everybody. [​IMG] Of course if the source isn't trusted, by all means make sure to keep seperate for 30 days or if your source has added birds to their flock recently. So sad about your hen missing her buddy. [​IMG]
  4. AmyRey

    AmyRey Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 25, 2009
    *hugs to you*

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