Pullet with respiratory problem! Urgent!

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by chippysmom327, Aug 5, 2013.

  1. chippysmom327

    chippysmom327 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I bought a pullet at a swap yesterday, and she looked healthy. Once I got her to my car I noticed her wheezing, coughing and sneezing. It's not a normal sneeze, but an EXTREMELY mucus-filled, nasty sneeze. Other than these symptoms, she was fine. I asked the seller, and she said she never saw anything like that in her flock.

    I went into TSC and bought some VetRx, because that was the only thing there that would treat respiratory illnesses. There wasn't anything there like Tylan, Tetracycline, or anything that I've read on here that treats respiratory things. I gave her ACV in her water, and she drank a lot of that. She's eating great, but is EXTREMELY skinny. Her keel bone is very prominent. Sometimes when she coughs, little rice sized chunks of what looks to be food comes out of her mouth.

    Today, she got worse. She has diarrhea, and it's pretty much the consistency of baby food. I gave her the VetRx into her nostrils, and will give some to her orally tonight. I'm using the bantam dosage, because she's about 8 or 9 weeks old.

    She's quarantined already, and hasn't had exposure to the other chickens. I'm extremely careful not to spread it to my other birds.


    So what should I do? I need help!
     
  2. Wyandottes7

    Wyandottes7 Overrun With Chickens

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    It sounds like you are doing everything you can with what you have. The disease sounds extremely serious, maybe a bit like Infectious Laryngotracheitis (not sure if I spelled that right...). Chronic Respiratory Disease doesn't seem very likely, as it usually causes facial swelling, and does not come on that suddenly. Infectious Bronchitis is also a very probable possibility. It appears very suddenly, and is quite acute. Coryza is likely not the cause, as it causes more swelling/cheesy discharge, and certainly doesn't start this quickly.

    The two most probable respiratory diseases (Infectious Bronchitis and Laryngotracheitis) are both viral diseases. Because of this, antibiotics will not cure the disease; they will only prevent secondary infection by bacteria. You have done the right thing in quarantining her. I'd still keep a close eye on your other birds, as respiratory diseases are extremely contagious.

    Keep her warm by suspending a heat lamp over her. Apple cider vinegar is a good idea, but you could also try giving her electrolytes and probiotics. If she becomes weak, give her sugar water and/or some honey.

    Continuing with VetRX is fine. Its never really helped my birds (that I know of), but it won't hurt her. Give her some orally and in her nostrils. The instructions also say to put some under her wing, as the vapors will help her if she sleeps with her head under her wing.

    Hope this helps! Good luck, and keep us updated!
     
  3. chippysmom327

    chippysmom327 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thank you so much!!! I really needed this! What are electrolytes found in? I have some berry gatorade that I can put in her water, but feel that wouldn't be good for her. I gave her a scrambled egg earlier, and I have some yoplait yogurt. Can I give her gatorade or berry yogurt?
     
    Last edited: Aug 5, 2013
  4. BantamLover21

    BantamLover21 Overrun With Chickens

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    I think that the berry yogurt is fine, but I'm not sure about the Gatorade. Chicken systems are not like human systems; you could very well overdose her on a certain vitamin that would have the same effect on a human. I think that the electrolytes that Wyandottes7 was talking about are chicken electrolytes, like Sav-a-Chic. You might be able to get them from a local livestock supply store. If not, here is a homemade electrolyte solution recipe from The Chicken Health Handbook by Gail Damerow:

    Ingredient: Source:

    1/3 teaspoon potassium chloride salt substitute
    1/2 teaspoon sodium bicarbonate baking soda
    1 teaspoon sodium chloride table salt
    2 quarts water

    Use this solution in place of drinking water for 4-6 hours a day, offering fresh water for the remainder of each day.

    If you can't make that solution, and can't find Sav-a-Chic, don't worry. Electrolytes are good, but the lack of them will not kill your chicken. Just make sure that she drinks enough water.
     
  5. chippysmom327

    chippysmom327 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks for the electrolyte recipe! I'll give her some berry yogurt!

    Do you guys think it is Infectious Laryngotracheitis ? I don't want to have to cull her. She's so sweet.
     
    Last edited: Aug 5, 2013
  6. BantamLover21

    BantamLover21 Overrun With Chickens

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    Unless she starts have a bloody discharge from her nostrils/mouth, or gets a lot worse, I do not think that it is Infectious Laryangotracheitis. But I could be wrong. Respiratory diseases are all so similar to each other that its really difficult to identify them!

    If there is not improvement in the next 24 hours, I would put her on a course of Tylan 50 injectable. Tylan is one of the strongest antibiotics used to treat respiratory infections. I don't usually recommend Tylan as the first thing to try due to its potency, but in the case of your hen, I think that it is the best course of action. Tylan 50 can usually be found at a livestock supply store, and is usually sold under the brand name Tylosin. Although it comes in a powdered form which you dissolve in water, the injectable form is much better.

    The dosage for Tylan is .5ccs for large fowl, .2-.3 ccs for bantams, injected into one side of the breast once daily for 3-5 days. When injecting, use the smallest needle gauge possible, and alternate the side of the breast that you inject into because Tylan can make the injection area painful. You can find information on how to give injections by searching the Internet or BYC. When using Tylan, (if it works), you should see improvement in 2-3 days. If Tylan doesn't work, you could try using a stronger antibiotic, but it would then be likely that you were dealing with a virus-caused disease, not one caused by a bacteria. If that was the case, antibiotics would have no effect.

    Good luck!! Keep us updated. If you have any other questions, just ask. [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Aug 5, 2013
  7. chippysmom327

    chippysmom327 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    She's only about 8 or 9 weeks old. What meds should I give her? Can I still give her the Tylan and stuff?

    If it is IB, should I cull her?
     
  8. Wyandottes7

    Wyandottes7 Overrun With Chickens

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    Well, I'm not sure. The symptoms of Infectious Laryngotracheitis (ILT), as found in Gail Damerow's Chicken Health Handbook, are:

    Watery, inflamed eyes, swollen sinuses, nasal discharge, unthriftiness, coughing (that sometimes produces bloody mucus), head shaking, breathing through mouth, gasping, choking, gurgling, rattling, and whistling. The disease is acute, but spreads slowly.

    Your bird only exhibits (from what I can gather) the coughing, sneezing, and wheezing, though it did come on suddenly. ILT is fairly common, especially at poultry shows, and probably, poultry swaps. Mortality is 10-20% on average, but can be higher in an acute infection or in mature birds in wintertime.

    Infectious Bronchitis is just as likely. It causes (from the Chicken Health Handbook):

    Gasping, coughing, sneezing, rattling, wet eyes, nasal discharge, loss of appetite, swollen wattles, and sometimes, swollen sinuses.

    Infectious Bronchitis is just as common, if not more common, than ILT. The only real difference is no bloody mucus, and the fact that Infectious Bronchitis spreads faster and easier. So, I'm not sure which disease your bird has. Since both are viral, the treatment is the same (keep bird warm, well fed, hydrated, and stress-free). Personally, I think that your chicken has Infectious Bronchitis.

    Survivors of Infectious Bronchitis are immune to further infections. However, they will be carriers. ILT survivors will also be immune, but carriers. If you want to keep your bird, you should vaccinate all of your other chickens for ILT. This will, at least, prevent them from being infected. ILT is a reportable disease in some states, as it is very serious.

    So, give your bird the supportive treatment I wrote about above. It would also be a good idea to get Oxytetracycline (sold under names such as Duramycin, Tetroxy HCA-280, LA200, or Terramycin). Give this to your chicken to prevent secondary infection. A secondary infection of Chronic Respiratory Disease is especially prevalent in birds with Infectious Bronchitis.
     
  9. BantamLover21

    BantamLover21 Overrun With Chickens

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    Hmm... didn't think of her age. I think you still could give her Tylan, but just in a lower amount. Maybe .1 ccs? If you don't want to risk using an antibiotic like Tylan, you could try a more mild antibiotic first, such as Terramycin (also known as Oxytetracyline). Terramycin also treats respiratory diseases, though it isn't as strong as Tylan. It comes in a powdered form, and is generally available at livestock supplies stores. The dosage for Terramycin is 1/8 teaspoon powder per cup of drinking water for 7-14 days. Results are usually seen within 2-3 days. During Terramycin treatment, do not give any type of dairy product.

    And as for culling, that is up to you. I personally think that I would try to nurse her back to health, no matter the disease, but that is only my opinion.
     
  10. Wyandottes7

    Wyandottes7 Overrun With Chickens

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    Correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe that the correct dosage for Tylan50 is .5ccs for bantams, 1cc for large fowl. The dosage you just gave is for Tylan200, which is a stronger version of Tylan.
     

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