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One sick chicken... help!

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Kruddle, Feb 28, 2014.

  1. Kruddle

    Kruddle New Egg

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    Mar 26, 2013
    I noticed one of my older hens staying "in bed" a couple of weeks ago and not moving around as much. Now she won't walk at all, has not ate or drank in two days,and not even able to stand on her own. I have been worried about what this could be.Also, before she quit walking...her vent was caked up bad. I washed her off with warm water, but she quit walking that same day. I really need some answers and need to know what to do to prevent this from happening to the rest of my flock.
     
  2. ellie32526

    ellie32526 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    It may be vent gleet. If it is, it is caused by a yeast infection called Candida Albicans. Search for reliable information about vent gleet and see if the description of symptoms fits your bird. Is her vent really red and swollen? If that is what it is - it is not contagious itself, but the underlying cause may be still present and could affect other birds. Chickens do their best not to exhibit symptoms because they are prey animals. They will mask their illnesses for weeks so one of the best things we can do as preventive maintenance is to be observant and check them out each day watching for anything out of the ordinary. That's why I went back to using several 1 gallon waterers. I don't have an automatic pop door for the same reason. I don't fault anyone who does, but daily cleaning of waterers and going out twice a day to open and close the pop door gives me a chance to check on my girls and gauge how they are acting.

    Sometimes vent gleet can be caused by moldy feed or hay or dirty water. The yeast infection sets up in the gut of the chicken and is very difficult to get rid of. Most of the time hens get this, but my roo has it and none of my hens. It will continue to invade the digestive tract from beak to vent. Many times the infected chicken will die because they feel so bad they just stop eating. I don't have a vet nearby who treats birds. If you do, you may be able to get a solution of Nystatin liquid to give her for 10-12 days. I ordered a bottle of Nystatin powder from Jedd's Avian products online and added it to their water each day until it was gone. It didn't cure my roo. I am also giving them all non-fat plain yogurt three-four times a week mixed with a little of their feed and scratch. He acts normal, eats and drinks but he has had this bright cherry red butt for almost 6 months and I can't seem to cure it.

    I hope you have success with your bird. If you find something that works, please share. There are other people who have problems with this on this website. We're all searching for answers to help our birds.
     
  3. Kruddle

    Kruddle New Egg

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    Mar 26, 2013
    Good information. I'm researching vent fleet, but I am extremely concerned because I am not sure of it. What about Maerks? Could it display some of the same symptoms? She has been drinking from a puddle that was filled with droppings. I am filling in the puddle and placing clean waterers to detour the rest of the flock from drinking from the same puddle.
     
  4. Kruddle

    Kruddle New Egg

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    I've also got her separated from the flock but I don't think she will make it through the night. This is my first experience with a sick chicken. She is my oldest chicken.
     
  5. ellie32526

    ellie32526 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'm sorry I don't know about Maerk's. I heard it could wipe out your flock and is highly contagious. I had all my chicks vaccinated against Maerk's at the hatchery when I ordered them. It isn't 100%, but so far no sick hens only Mr. Red rooster butt. I think dirty water was my culprit too. I only had one waterer last year at the beginning of summer. The hens had a bad habit of spilling their water to cool off and then they would be without water the whole day. Tractor Supply was out of waterers so I used a large container to put water in until I could get something else and they had the crazy idea to wade in it. So I am glad I only have one with problems but I wish I could fix his problem and have my beautiful rooster back.
     
  6. ten chicks

    ten chicks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Have you checked her for being egg bound?

    Not eating/drinking for 2 days is not good,she is dehydrated and starvation does not take long in birds. They require a constant supply of food to fuel their high metabolic body,without food/water they become lethargic/body starts to shut down and die.

    Link for vent gleet

    http://www.tillysnest.com//2012/12/vent-gleet-prevention-and-treatment.html
     
    Last edited: Feb 28, 2014
  7. Kruddle

    Kruddle New Egg

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    What would you all recommend at this point? I have 28 3 week old chicks and 1 Too and 6 full grown hens. Do I need to vaccinate all? IF the sick hen makes it through the night, how do I make her eat and drink? And how to you check to see if she is egg bound? I know she has not laid in at least 2 weeks. I am so confused... So any information is greatly appreciated
     
  8. ten chicks

    ten chicks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    You have no idea what is wrong with her,so there is nothing to vaccinate for.

    To check for egg binding,put on gloves w lubricant,insert finger into vent see if you can feel an egg or broken egg(shells)if you feel an egg,give her a tums or calcium tablet(break up into pieces and give orally) or liquid calcium this should help pass egg. Keep her quiet/warm and in a dark location.

    Do not give her a warm water soak in the condition she is in,give her one when she is in a more stable condition. If you find broken shells,gently remove but be careful you do not want to cut her internally,flush out vent internally with a diluted vinegar/water solution this helps remove egg contents and helps with bacteria,but watch for infection with eggs breaking internally.

    For future reference any bird not eating for a couple of day should be tube fed. Here is a great link for tube feeding.

    https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/805728/go-team-tube-feeding

    You can also use aquarium tubing(this is what i use)melt one end with matches,etc,this helps tube slide in easier.
     
    Last edited: Feb 28, 2014
  9. ellie32526

    ellie32526 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Someone else will have to handle the egg bound part and the vaccination part.

    I know there is a way to tube feed but it sounds pretty difficult.

    When one of my little hens got injured and stopped eating I made a mash for her twice a day with feed and sardines and electrolyte water. I made it really soupy so she could get both liquid and nourishment at the same time. She loved the sardines and just dove in. If she had been too sick to eat it on her own I would have had to try the tube feeding. Look up Fuzzy Bum on this website - Im sure she could give you some pointers on tube feeding if it comes to that.
     
  10. ten chicks

    ten chicks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Tube feeding is really very easy,the link i posted explains it in detail.
     

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