Respiratory/Congestion, not responding to treatment

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by My1stChickens, Feb 21, 2016.

  1. My1stChickens

    My1stChickens Out Of The Brooder

    May 16, 2015
    One week ago, my favorite hen was sorta staying to herself, rather than with the other girls. That afternoon, her breathing sounded like "rattling", while she was in the nesting box to lay an egg. I started entire group on Duramycin in the drinking water. Roo was the only other one acting "off", he seemed a little subdued. All eating and drinking well, bright and active.

    The next day the rattling turned to gurgling.
    Day 3, Roo is back to crowing, and 100% normal. No one else shows any issues.
    On day 4, a few bubbles in the corners of her eyes. I'm still hoping this is how it normally runs its course.
    Day 5, some stickiness around nostrils. Added VetRx to the mix.
    Day 6, I conclude the Duramycin is not going to cut it. I ran from place to place til I found Tylan. Found Tylosin Tartrate powder, which suited me as I'm not confident about injections, and would prefer to treat the entire flock since anything respiratory is supposed to be very contagious. Because they'd already had Duramycin this day, I waited til the morning to switch meds.

    Day 7: mixed 1 t or 2 grams per gallon-- I measured and weighed. Based on info I found on this site I added cranberry juice and cherry jello to make it more palatable. Pulled up some concentrated med/juice into a 3cc syringe, before I fully diluted it into a full gallon. I wanted to give her some orally-- to ensure she gets enough and gets a good start on the Tylan. Turns out she was not fan of this idea, but she probably had 1/3 of her daily dose directly and she'll get the rest in drinking water.

    She's still pretty bright, eats well, drinks well. Her breathing is often audible, she sounds congested. She sometime sneezes. But other than that, she is pretty bright, comes running for something to eat, and I see her drinking through out the day. She is still with the flock-- I started to separate her but she was mad. (She busted out of the shower and was prancing through the house-- I figured she felt well enough to be out)

    What am I missing? Am I doing everything I should for her? I'm a newbie, this is my favorite hen, the one who likes to eat out of my hand.
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2016
  2. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Flock Master Premium Member

    Apr 3, 2011
    southern Ohio
    The Tylan hopefully will help if it is MG or a bacterial infection. If it is a virus, though, the antibiotic may help prevent secondary infections, but the virus will have to run it's course. Some viruses are infectious bronchitis (IB,) and infectious larygotracheitis (ILT.) Bacterial respiratory diseases include mycoplasma (MG,) infectious coryza, and sometimes they can be complicated by E.coli or others. If I would use Tylan, I would get Tylan 50, and give it orally instead of injecting it. Since you have the Tylan Powder in the water, can you place her in a cage with her water and food inside the coop, so that the others won't get treated? Be sure and use some probiotics now and after the treatment. Here is a good link with those diseases above and their symptoms:
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2016
  3. cafarmgirl

    cafarmgirl Overrun With Chickens

    The Tylan is a good idea because these things turn into pneumonia very easily. The problem is that these respiratory diseases are very hard, almost impossible, to tell apart without having some testing done. Many are viral, some are bacterial. So in the case of a virus it just has to run it's course, the antibiotic's won't help in that aspect but they will help prevent secondary bacterial infections and pneumonia. Those complications are what usually kills the bird before it can recover.

    You can separate her if you want but at this point it's a lot like shutting the barn door after the horse ran off, everybody has been exposed and are likely to come down with whatever this is in time. The only thing I personally would do different is that I would only treat those birds who are showing symptoms rather then treat the entire flock. I use antibiotics very sparingly and only for birds who absolutely need it. Symptoms can vary, some will recover without much trouble, others will get wheezy/rattly/gurgly and need some meds.

    Also make sure she, or any others who are or become sick, stay warm enough, especially at night. Otherwise let them do their chicken thing as long as they are active, eating and drinking. If I have a bird who starts being lethargic, not wanting to eat or drink much, then I'll bring that bird inside in a hosptial cage to keep it warm and make sure it's getting enough food and fluids.

    If you should happen to loose a bird to whatever this is, consider having a necropsy done by your state poultry pathology lab. It's always very helpful to know what you are dealing with. That way you know best how to treat and manage long term as well as what to expect as far as how often it's likely to recurr and length of carrier status. If you have access to an avian vet you can also have a live bird tested. They can draw blood and do some other tests to send off.
    1 person likes this.
  4. My1stChickens

    My1stChickens Out Of The Brooder

    May 16, 2015
    Thanks for sharing that chart. I kept reading each set of symptoms, and realizing it wasn't describing her.... basically she has some growling noises, and I think she's sneezing. But no swelling of the head. There may be slight discharge. No odor. And she is still laying eggs. She does not cleanly fit into any of the diseases-- which I'm sure is why swapping/culturing is so often suggested.

    Six hours after I dosed her this morning, her breathing is quiet, and she's in the box laying an egg. I'm going to watch her closely, but maybe the Tylan is doing the trick.

    I need to find a chicken vet near me, as if she is going to be a carrier of something like MG, I want to know it.

    I am torn about medicating just her, versus the flock. I am not a fan of unnecessary meds, or unnecessary effort. But I know something was affecting the roo at first... since he was "off". And one day my older Rhodebar was not right... but she seems okay now. I have found a couple eggs in the last week that were laid on the roost at night-- either on the poop shelf or on the ground. They were otherwise normal, but it's not normal to find eggs that slipped out in the night rather were purposely laid in the boxes.

    Tylan is usually 3 days, 5 at most-- and I'm going to be gone for about 36 hours Monday afternoon to Tuesday evening-- so I'm going to just medicate the flock. If by Tuesday (3rd day of Tylan) she does not seem well, but everyone else is.... I will arrange to bring her into the house or garage, with one friend if need be. She feels too good to tolerate separation at present.

    I appreciate the thoughtful and helpful replies. It's hard not knowing exactly what to do for her. I have had horses for decades, and am so confident about their care, treatment of illness/injury-- but then again, it took decades to learn that.
  5. My1stChickens

    My1stChickens Out Of The Brooder

    May 16, 2015

    I ended up bringing her into the house, since the weather was turning cold. We'd been having warm sunny days and lows in the 60's but today's high was 45 (with rain and wind) and tonight it will be cold. The Tylan seems to be helping-- she seems happy, and is eating well. She actually tried to escape from the shower, knocking shampoo bottles off a shelf that is at least 4 if not 5 feet high. She laid an egg in the little bed I fixed her. But she's still gurgling. Today was the third day of Tylan, and from what I've read I can give it up to five days.

    My thought is to stop medicating the flock-- since no one shows symptoms. And continue two more days with her since she's gurgling. I am worried about what to do after two more days of Tylan. Shouldn't the gurgling have stopped by now?
  6. My1stChickens

    My1stChickens Out Of The Brooder

    May 16, 2015
    This chicken really wants out of the hospital..... but temps for the next few days are highs around 60, lows in the 30's. I'm assuming that's too cold for her to be outside, right?
  7. Pork Pie Ken

    Pork Pie Ken Flockless Premium Member

    Jan 30, 2015
    Africa - near the equator
    It may take some time for the gurgling to stop as you may, after all, be dealing with a viral issue. I'd still add the vitamin supplements / electrolytes to her water as this can help boost her immune system, but after that I'm not sure there's too much else you can do.

    I'll let other members comment on temperatures as i live in Kenya and the kind of temps you mention are alien to me here.

    all the best

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by