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Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by fluffy9947, Nov 12, 2019.
Hi, two of my chickens are rasping when they breathe. What can I do for them?
Keep them warm (75+) and give them more fresh air.
Where are you located?
How many birds? Ages? What is your coop like? Bedding, windows, other ventilation?
Is that the only symptom you are seeing? Has there been a sudden weather change, or any wet or moldy areas around your coop? Look for bubbles in an eye, drainage or swelling of an eye, sneeze, cough, crackles or wheezes. Have hou added any new birds recently?
Hi, thanks for your post! I think my chucks get plenty of fresh air, as they are free range in the garden (approx 1 acre). Can't keep them warm as we live in North Yorkshire, England, and it can be cold, but they do enjoy the freedom and are all fully feathered. We seldom go below -4 degrees, and they should be able to cope with that. In fact, it's the milder air plus the wet that leads to respiritory problems. They do need meds, just like humans, in the colder weather. Any suggestions? Yours, fluffy
Just as in humans if its viral there are no meds. Bacterial tylosin, tylan, doxycycline or gentamicin sulfate.
Are you saying they don't go into a building of any kind at night?
They don't free range at night and when confined to the coop is the ventilation I was talking about.
I know respiratory problems happen to some people's chickens but without knowing what the malady is (bacterial, viral, fungal, environmental, etc.) there is no med that can be suggested. They don't make over the counter cold and flu meds for chickens.
I said to keep them warm because you said they were sick. Warmth is the recommended supportive care for sick chickens. If they are truly sick, you need to find a place that is warm.
It ranges from -28C to 45C here and we frequently get a week of rain at a time and really wet seasons. In my life, I've never had a chicken with a respiratory problem.
I'll repeat my questions here.
How many birds? Ages? What is your coop like? Type of bedding? Size of windows, other ventilation?
I THINK you are being a bit bullying! Bully for you that you have never had a chicken with a respiratory probem! Many people do, and my avian vet is very accustomed to these problems. Of course my chucks go into a house at night! My hen shed is huge and built with wood. My bedding is newspaper, as this carries no mites, and is approved by my avian vet. There is a window on the front, which can be closed in very cold weather, but, as they are out all day, this is not an issue.
I don't like your tone. I look after my chickens very well.
Your original post was over 2wks ago. Are they still having respiratory symptoms?
A lot depends on the cause of the raspy breathing. There are many respiratory diseases that chickens can get - some are bacterial in nature, others are viral. Antibiotics can treat the symptoms of diseases like Mycoplasma or Infectious Coryza. Viruses have to run their course - secondary infection may need antibiotics.
You mention they need meds - since you are in the UK, your avian vet would be the one to recommend and prescribe something for you.
If the cause is environmental like poor ventilation or molds, then again, there are different treatment methods for symptoms.
It's a good question about housing. Often, there is not enough nighttime ventilation. We humans tend to want to shut chickens up when it gets cool, but chickens need fresh air coming into the coop to remove ammonia from droppings up and out of the coop. Ventilation is different than drafts.
No one is saying you don't keep a tidy coop - chickens breath is moist, their poop is moist (not to mention ammonia) air needs to flow through the coop (not on the chickens) to remove moisture.
Whenever there has been a respiratory disease in a chicken it can come back again, and the other chickens could be carriers. So you might be seeing the same disease show up during cold weather when they are spending more time in their coop. Your vet might be able to help you get a sick bird tested to see what disease you are seeing, in case it is a virus or a bacterial one. Raspiness might just be from changing weather or mold spores, but mold can also cause aspergillosis. Here is a good link to read about the differences among the common respiratory diseases, mycoplasma gallisepticum (MG,) infectious bronchitis, infectious coryza, ILT, and aspergillosis:
What does your vet usually prescribe for your chickens? If the symptoms clear up with use, then it might be MG, which is very common.