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Poss Respiratory Outbreak: Avian Rhinotracheitis? UPDATE:HEALTHY BIRDS

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Bravo, Jun 12, 2011.

  1. Bravo

    Bravo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    A few days ago I posted about a few chicks in a brooder showing signs of respiratory problems (wheezing, rattly breathing). They are 3 weeks old and have never come in contact with other birds. They were hatched at my house and Ive never brought live birds into my flock.

    When I noticed the problem I changed their bedding to paper towels. Unfortunately my husband dumped their pine shavings in the backyard where my adult birds roam. I am so upset but there is nothing I can do now.

    Yesterday I noticed one of my outdoor pullets (10 weeks old) had swollen eyes and bubbly eye...no sign of respiratory issues but I immediately quarantined her anyway. Then today almost ALL of my outdoor birds eye rims are starting to swell and the respiratory symptoms are quickly following. It is so bad I had to quarantine the healthy birds.

    I am horrified. I have no idea what is going on. I live in a very urban setting so there are not really sources of outside infection.

    Their symptoms are:
    -swollen eye rims (very red faces)
    -some have rattling/wheezy breathing
    -only 1 had bubbly eye

    Everyone is eating and drinking and otherwise acting normal.

    Any ideas what this could be and how to treat it? Please no acronyms.

    Where could this have come from? Will my birds that survive be carriers?

    I have 2 yr old birds in my flock and they have NEVER been sick. I am so overwhelmed I don't know where to start.



    ***6/17/11 UPDATE***

    Looks like this is just allergies. Lab work came back perfect!

    See page 2 for full info

    Just wanted to add that my birds never had any ocular or nasal discharge. Just swollen eye rims, wattles and rattly breathing. Please read this thread before culling birds with respiratory symptoms!
     
    Last edited: Jun 17, 2011
  2. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble

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    Are there any environmental issues involved, such as; pollen, dust/dirt, smoke, chemicals on the lawn etc...?
    It very well could be a respiratory disease. Have you been to any chickens swap meets, shows? Has a friend or neighbor that has chickens accidently introduced something via their shoes or clothing? Wild birds could also introduce a disease. I was just trying to help you establish how it got introduced.
    You did the right thing by quarantining the infected birds, and you'll have to keep them completely seperated from your 2 year old birds since they arnt infected. If you do not wish to cull, I recommend you purchase "denegard" which can be purchased from QC Supply. It is for swine and I've been reading good things about it here in the BYC forums, more so than other antibiotics. Type in "denegard" in the BYC search box and read up on it if you wish. Your birds will always be carriers. Antibiotics will treat the symptoms, but wont cure the disease. It sounds like they may have MG or MS. Here are 2 links; the first one are the many types of respiratory diseases and the other one deals specifically about MG:
    http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/ps044
    http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/ps034
     
  3. Bravo

    Bravo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:Thank you for your response. I ordered the Denagard.

    There has definitely been pollen and some dust in the air. No chemicals in the lawn.

    I noticed a few weeks ago they were dustbathing in an area where my husband emptied the bbq pit once. That was a while ago when he did that and I am sure that has been a prime dustbathing location since.

    No chicken shows, swap meets--nothing like that. No visitors in the backyard either. I suppose we could have tracked something in on our shoes but from where? We normally just go to and from work.

    The interesting thing is that it started in the brooder with the 3 week olds that I hatched. Eggs were NPIP certified.

    The 2 y/o birds are sick too--my post above was confusing.

    No nasal discharge on any birds. This is a nightmare.
     
  4. easttxchick

    easttxchick Lone Star Call Ducks

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    It's possible a wild bird brought something in to your flock. In instances like that, there is NOTHING you can do to prevent it.
    NPIP only tests for Pullorum and Typhoid, it doesn't test for respiratory illnesses that are common nowadays, unfortunately.
    I hope everything goes well for your flock.
     
  5. Bravo

    Bravo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:Thank you for your response!

    The strange thing is that my 3 week old chicks in a brooder inside the house were the first to exhibit symptoms--well before the older flock started.

    Would this still make sense?
     
  6. pips&peeps

    pips&peeps There is no "I" in Ameraucana

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    Were they from your flock or did you purchase eggs?
     
  7. easttxchick

    easttxchick Lone Star Call Ducks

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    Odds are, you carried it outside to your bigger flock on accident after handling the younger birds.
    These stupid respiratory things can be carried on your shoes, your clothes, etc.
     
  8. Bravo

    Bravo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    pips&peeps :

    Were they from your flock or did you purchase eggs?

    Jean, I purchased the eggs from a well known Ameraucana breeder. The chicks were fine until last Thursday when I noticed the symptoms. Saturday evening I noticed the bubbly eye in a pullet outside and isolated her immediately. By Sunday evening EVERYONE but 2 birds were showing swollen eye rims, only a few had any respiratory symptoms.​
     
  9. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble

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    What's done is done. From what I've read about the denegard, I think you'll be pleased that there isnt any known resistance to it as well as a short withdrawal period. I would start out with the "maintenance dose" first, rather than the "treatment" dose. The maintenance dose may be all you need to control the problem. My understanding is denegard is very bitter to the taste and may require adding Karo Syrup to the mixture.
     
  10. Bravo

    Bravo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:Thank you Dawg53!!!
     

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