Respiratory illness.... IB?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by chevybelle, Aug 20, 2013.

  1. chevybelle

    chevybelle Out Of The Brooder

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    I have made a terrible mistake. I bought 3 hens at a swap Saturday and have infected my perfectly healthy other 6 with something. I don't think it is coryza since they don't smell bad. I noticed yesterday that one of the new ones had a runny nose and one side of her face was swollen and she could barely open her eye. I got her out hoping I might have caught it early. Went to Co-Op today and got Tylan 50 because I figured it is infectious bronchitis. Giving the shot was hard, I would never make it as a nurse.

    Just went up to check on everybody else and noticed the new buttercup was snotting everywhere and my older RIR is making a weird guttural sound and sneezing. Now I know I have to treat everybody so I put the first sicky back in the coop so she wouldn't have to be in the basement by herself. She looked better before the meds but had bright green poops all day which I think is from not eating much.

    Here are my questions:
    1. I gave the BL 1 cc (or mL) of the Tylan, is that correct for 3 days? It seemed like a lot in the syringe but that is what they said to give.
    2. Do I just go ahead and give them all the same dose?
    3. Do I need 27 syringes or can I re-use? Just for the record, I know this would be inappropriate for humans, but wasn't sure about them.
    4. If it is IB, do they carry it forever like coryza? I guess I'm okay with that since we aren't getting rid of any and don't need more unless these don't make it. We just want eggs.
    5. Are they going to be okay? Is this really just the equivalent of a cold or am I looking at some mortality?
    6. Is there anything else I need to do?
    7. Is there another way to medicate them or can somebody give some pointers on how the give the injection?

    I'm tired of learning lessons the hard way! Thank you all for all of your information on here and for whoever is able to help!
     
  2. chevybelle

    chevybelle Out Of The Brooder

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    I remembered another question. Do we need to toss the eggs for a period of time after the 3 days on Tylan? If so, how long?
     
  3. Lady of McCamley

    Lady of McCamley Overrun With Chickens

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    I am so sorry this has happened to you...I feel your pain. I had a 6 month old Delaware I purchased bring IB into my flock...and I had kept her in an isolation coop...however, the wind blows from that coop's direction and IB floats on the breeze. Lesson learned. [​IMG]

    You've got a lot of questions, so I've attempted to categorize my answers below.

    DISEASES:

    IB does not swell the sinuses...it is generally restricted to sneezing, rales (wheezing), "honking" (coughing), and sometimes watery discharges in beak. MG (bacterial) or ART (viral) causes swelling in the sinuses. MG often causes CRD (chronic respiratory disease...akin to "asthma" in chickens).

    I've posted a link for respiratory diseases and treatments below:
    http://www.localharvest.org/blog/26992/entry/respiratory_disease_in_chickens

    It depends on what your birds have as to what kind of "carriers" they will become. I read a LOT about IB, and the best information said that they could shed the virus anywhere from 1 month to 1 year...likely a lot less. It is easy to kill with disinfectants. I used Lysol Disinfectant Spray as it is very effective against viruses (and what my daughter's vet clinic uses.)

    MG could make your bird a carrier, but if you keep a closed flock and don't show, that won't be a big deal. The only thing you could be concerned about is if you bred and sold eggs or chicks as MG can pass into the egg.

    I'd have to read up on ART as to what kind of carrier.

    TREATMENT:
    Honestly, if it is IB or something else that is viral, antibiotics won't help...akin to taking antibiotics for fighting the common cold. Antibiotics are often administered at the end of IB, or other viral infections, to help with secondary bacterial infections in case they arise from all that warm mucus growing stuff. They are also over-administered for viral infections, so I tend to wait until I know it is needed to avoid antibiotic resistant bacteria.


    If it is bacterial, you will need to administer antibiotics from the start...however I would definitely choose to put it in the water rather than having to administer shots! I got Durvet Duramycin-10 (Tetracyline HCL powder) to put in the water, but I ended up not using it as what my chickens had was viral.The package states egg withdrawal for 10 days from last administration. You will want to withdraw eggs anyway while they are sick. I would also give pro-biotics as the antibiotics will upset the gut flora causing diarrhea.


    For my chickens to help them fight off their viral IB, I did the following (which greatly improved their general appearance as they were fighting their "chicken chest cold.") This would also be helpful to boost the immune of any sick chicken.

    ELDERBERRY TINCTURE: I put Elderberry tincture in the water (the non-alcohol kind). My family gets viral bronchitis a lot, which turns into asthma for me and a doctor recommended it. It really, really works to fight viruses. I researched, and a lot of chickens eat elderberries with no ill effect although it is thought the seed can be toxic. However, the tincture has no seed, so I gave it to them...and honestly I saw it helping them just as the stuff has helped my family. I put a tablespoon in the gallon waterer and kept administering over the next 5 days as the virus ran its course.

    FRESH GARLIC: I also added fresh garlic to the feed, enough to smell garlicky. Garlic is known to fight viruses as well. I also added the vitamin/electrolyte "Save A Chick" to the Elderberry waterer. In a different plastic waterer, I added Apple Cider Vinegar (with the mother) to help boost the gut flora. I kept all that up for a solid week to 10 days until the disease had run its course.

    PRO-BIOTICS: I also gave them pro-biotics to boost their healthy gut flora (the biggest part of the immune system). This is especially important to do if you give antibiotics as they will have wiped out the normal gut flora (causing diarrhea.) You can get those at the feed store, or give them yogurt. Since milk generally causes more phlem in humans, I chose to give the non-dairy packets in water.

    FOLLOW UP WITH ANTIBIOTIC IF NEEDED, DE-WORMER: After the initial week, and the birds were pretty much done with the worse part of the "cold," I chose to put Rooster Booster Triple Action Multi-Wormer (Hygromycin B and Bacitracin) in the feed to ward off any secondary infections and worm build up that likely happened while their immune systems were down. Good news...there is no egg withdrawal for that product. You can get it at the farm store or online here: http://www.abetterchicken.com/product/50101 Commercial growers use it as continuous feed to keep worms and CRD at bay in commercial flocks, but many small owners (like me) use it once a month or periodically. I used it for one week at the end of the IB (it helped with overall vitality). Discontinue any vitamins/electrolytes in the water as Triple Action has vitamins in it.

    Of my then 17 hens, I fortunately only lost one hen. She went down fast with kidney failure which can happen with IB. I have one that I will likely have to cull as it lays very fragile eggs that shatter as soon as they are laid (typical of IB that hits the egg duct.)

    It took about 6 weeks after the illness for my egg production to come back from barely anything at all. At 3 months, they were back into full production. They are now totally happy and healthy. [​IMG]

    HTH
    Lady of McCamley
     
  4. chevybelle

    chevybelle Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 7, 2013
    Tennessee
    From what I am reading, it sounds like the Tylan will treat coryza, IB, and MG - so I think I will stick with it since I don't think I can have anybody tested. I am not looking forward to doing 9 injections each day. But I suppose I can do anything for 3 days as long as I don't have to start over. Even starting over doesn't make sense if these diseases are as rampant as it sounds and any bird could be a carrier.

    So back to a couple of questions:
    1. Any other way to give Tylan?
    2. Do I need to run back to Co-Op and get a box of syringes or can they be reused?

    Also - what medical maintenance do I need to do moving forward? I have tried to read back through all of the related posts but it seems like everybody has differing opinions and info is so spread out.
     
  5. Lady of McCamley

    Lady of McCamley Overrun With Chickens

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    Unless you change to a soluble powder, I don't know of any other method of administering Tylan liquid injectible...that's what it's for to my understanding.

    I personally would just change the needles but disinfect syringes in clorox solution between uses. Not saying that is "kosher" but that is what I would do. (If you meant needles and syringes...I probably would disinfect by soaking 30 min. in strong clorox solution and reuse for this one time illness then dispose. All vets simultaneously cringe now please.)

    As to continued maintenance...that really depends on what your birds have got...and I'm like you, I don't have money for testing.

    From my understanding, if you don't show, and you don't breed and sell fertile eggs for hatching or chicks, then having a closed flock won't be a big deal and it doesn't really matter what your birds have other than they get well...new purchased birds could come in, which could be a risk if MG is being carried still by these hens, but none leave other than culling or the soup pot. Egg sale for consumption would be fine after the approved withdrawal period for antibiotics as none of these diseases pass on to humans.

    If you do show or breed, then if I remember right, your hens could be possible permanent carriers of MG (don't know about ART), and you might have to consider your options. I'd go to the best Ag sites for that info. Like I said in my prior post, the commercial industry uses continuous feed Bacitracin for CRD...which you can get in Rooster Booster Triple Action.

    If it is IB...the best information I could find after a lot of reading is that they should at most shed the virus for 1 year (many said 4 months), then they will never get it again nor be permanent carriers. I chose to not add to my flock until after 4 months (other than the eggs I already had hatching.) I wasn't too worried about the IB as it is a fragile virus and I didn't have to worry about permanent contamination in my environment. We get so much rain in Oregon...it was washed away the first week after illness from the yard.

    Once the illness was done, I disinfected everything with Lysol disinfectant spray and cleaned the coop really, really good, throwing away the pine shavings in garbage bags carried out to the garbage....I guess that could spread it to the environment, however the bags sat in sunlight for several weeks and the IB virus is very susceptible to heat, water, detergents, and sunlight...so I figured they were safe...God forgive me if they were not. Other choice was to burn them...which I can't do where we are.

    I'm not familiar enough with ART to tell you anything about that other than what you can read online.

    Sorry I'm not much help...and I agree there is so much varying information and opinion all over the place.

    Good luck in finding the right path for your birds.
    Lady of McCamley
     
    Last edited: Aug 21, 2013
  6. ChickenMommaG

    ChickenMommaG New Egg

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    Hey Chevybelle,

    I had nearly the same experience you did, same symptoms including the swelling (on some birds not all) and sneezing (the serious "ka-CHOO," not the ladylike, almost silent "hsph"), rales, gasping, clear mucous out of the nose and eyes. I did have all 8 birds tested for everything and they finally came back positive for IB after 7 weeks (it took just about that long for the birds to seroconvert and show up IB antibodies on the bloodwork; earlier blood tests were negative for everything). The healthy ones caught it from the rooster trade-ins, even after assurances that all the birds were healthy. Lesson learned, don't take anyone's work for it...

    Lady of McCamley provided some really good responses, I'll try to add my perspective and answer your remaining questions...

    1. I gave the BL 1 cc (or mL) of the Tylan, is that correct for 3 days? It seemed like a lot in the syringe but that is what they said to give.
    That sounds about right, I had given Baytril (to non laying 8 week old chicks), 0.5 mL every 12 hours for 10 days under guidance from a vet. But keep in mind that any antibiotic is just to prevent secondary infections, it does not treat IB, they have to fight through that on their own and it takes a good few weeks to get over it. I used VetRx as a rub on their nostrils and under the wings to make them (me?) feel better.

    2. Do I just go ahead and give them all the same dose?
    If it is practical, I was told by two vets to give only the sick ones the antibiotic. If this is not practical, you can dose them all the same. You just want to use the correct amount of the antibiotics so as not to inadvertently breed germs that develop a resistance to them. A shorter course than advised, for instance, is not good to do - because it will not kill all bacteria just the weakest bacteria, and it will make the stronger bacteria that survived the short treatment even stronger and possibly resistant the next time you need to treat.

    3. Do I need 27 syringes or can I re-use? Just for the record, I know this would be inappropriate for humans, but wasn't sure about them.
    I just used the same syringe but I delivered it orally, I did not inject. My rationale is that if they are going to catch IB, it will not be from the syringe; IB is highly contagious and airborne and the assumption is that if one has it all will soon follow.

    4. If it is IB, do they carry it forever like coryza? I guess I'm okay with that since we aren't getting rid of any and don't need more unless these don't make it. We just want eggs.
    Despite some online sources saying they do, I have found seemingly reputable sources that say they don't:

    5. Are they going to be okay? Is this really just the equivalent of a cold or am I looking at some mortality?
    If they are already laying, they should be substantial enough in size to recover with little to no mortality. The little ones take the hardest hit. I know it looks bad, they have such labored breathing and all you can really do is make them comfortable (the VetRx seemed to do something, if only making me feel like I have done all I can). The above links have great information. I did lose two birds to this, but one was a 6 week old chick who within 36 hours of exposure fatally suffered from tracheal occlusion (solidified mucous in the throat), and one was 15 weeks old in the same age group (so 9 weeks later) but I suspect her case was complicated by a staph infection from bumblefoot that I fear went, in my inexperience, unnoticed with in the fray of all the sick birds with IB.

    6. Is there anything else I need to do?
    If you have the energy, don't give up on the really sick ones. They are more resilient than they seem. I am convinced I brought back some from death's door by hand feeding them warm water mashed with their feed. The sugar water perked them up enough to eat willingly about 70% of the times I tried it. This was my first chicken experience and I wasn't going to easily give up on them. Of course, easy to do with a handful of chicks, not so easy with a larger flock.

    7. Is there another way to medicate them or can somebody give some pointers on how the give the injection?
    I have read that it is ok to give the injectable orally, in fact that is what my avian vet had me do. He showed me how to gently pinch the sides of the beak and place the liquid down the roof of the mouth (to avoid the bird choking on it).

    8. Do we need to toss the eggs for a period of time after the 3 days on Tylan? If so, how long?
    Everything I have read suggested tossing for 10 days, but it is hard to get a definitive answer. Few to no tests appear to have been done to provide evidence of when the antibiotic is clear of the chicken's system, or how much gets into the egg (mostly because when a chicken gets sick in a production setting the owner will cull as it is not economically sound for them to treat, so there is no commercial motivation for such a study).

    9. What medical maintenance do I need to do moving forward?
    For IB, once they are free of it, they have immunity to that strain. Prevention is the best protection. Keep new birds separated (really, really separated) for 2 weeks before integration with the main flock. Wild birds can carry all sorts of virus strains so it is hard to really achieve 100% protection. Many people deworm their chickens - there are lots of threads on here for that. Here is an external link that I like. http://www.meetup.com/AustinBackyardPoultry/messages/boards/thread/23965462

    Best wishes! Let us know how they come along.
     
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  7. chevybelle

    chevybelle Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 7, 2013
    Tennessee
    Thank you chickenmommag and lady of mccamley for your help. I found that shilala homestead website on how to do the injection on another post and it was helpful. We gave the BL her 2nd dose and the RIR her first dose like it was nothing. I'm not going to treat anybody else unless they show symptoms. Now that I've climbed down off the wall a bit I'm feeling much better about the situation. It's just hard to think about losing more. We had raised 3 Wyandotte chicks and each died about a month apart after moving to the coop from what I assumed was cocci. The last one was particularly hard - she was really special and personable and I tried all I knew to do to save her. And in the middle of that had a BR that must have dislocated a hip and ended up getting picked clean through a chain link fence covered with 1 inch chicken wire because I didn't know she couldn't get inside anymore. Raccoons are ridiculously crafty.

    My question now is how long to toss eggs. So many answers everywhere. How long have you all thrown them out?
     
  8. Lady of McCamley

    Lady of McCamley Overrun With Chickens

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    Most consensus of what I've read is....10 days after the last dose of antibiotics. If we don't consider antibiotic withdrawal, everything I read said that there was no way to get IB from the chicken eggs and that they were fine to eat. However, the egg yolks might be fragile and the whites watery, and they might not keep as well. I skipped the eggs for the 2 or 3 days it was the worse. Then if I cracked an egg and it looked pale, fragile, or watery, I tossed. If it looked okay, I used it. I immediately refrigerated all eggs I gathered that looked normal shelled. If anything looked funky shelled, I tossed it immediately. But remember I did not use antibiotics except the Bacitracin at the end which has no pull time.

    But tossing or keeping was a pretty easy decision as I basically just wasn't getting. During IB week, they amazingly laid pretty well. It was the next week after that I began to not get much (2 a day from 15 layers). That lasted about 2 weeks...then slowly picked up to where by 6 weeks time they were okay layers again (6 to 7 from the 15 layers), and now I'm back to pre-IB production after 3 months with only one hen that has IB warping in the shell structure and one that has very fragile eggs...although I think it may be same chicken alternating between funky shell and fragile shell....I have to isolate her to figure it out. Whoever she/they are, she/they will be culled.

    HTH
    Lady of McCamley
     
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