Sad outcome for 4wk old chick - what could this have been?!!

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by BYCOwner, Apr 19, 2012.

  1. BYCOwner

    BYCOwner New Egg

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    Apr 19, 2012
    Hi all,

    I'm a newbie chicken owner. My husband and I recently got 5 buff orps almost 2 weeks ago (they were 2 weeks old at that point). They're now 4 weeks. Yesterday morning we fed, watered, and checked everybody before leaving for work, and I came home to find a little girl who did not want to eat or drink. Everybody else was at the cage door waiting for me like usual and she just laid in the corner. I picked her up - she is one of the more nervous of the group so her allowing me to do that was new, so I knew something was up. I checked her over everywhere and couldn't see anything visibly wrong with her, stood her up and she rocked back to a plopped position. I tried hand feeding her and water, she wanted nothing to do with is. I seperated her immediately and attempted electrolytes with an eyedropper. I wet her beak and she eventually opened her mouth a little. She seemed VERY tired. Watching her try to walk it looked like she had some sort of stroke. She started to use her wings to keep her balance. I researched and researched last night of what it could be. Her fecal matter was a little runny and green and she only made one deposit around 8pm last night and nothing again after.

    When my husband got home he helped me give her more electrolytes and water which again, it was really only wetting her beak. We tried to get her to eat something and put some in her water and she seems to move her beak around it. She started laying on her side and slowly moving her one foot around. I would fold her wings back up and tried to pile shavings so she would at least have some support. The only vet I could think of taking her to was closed and is over an hour away from us, which would leave us with an ER vet who knows nothing about any type of bird. After the little bit of electrolytes she seemed a little stronger and we had hope.

    She made it through the night and was MUCH worse by this morning. Her beak was lacking color and her face had a greenish blue tinge to it. She was so exhausted her couldn't hold her head up and she just kept getting worse. We gave her more electrolytes and nothing was getting better, only worse. We humanely euthanized her this morning.

    Does anyone have any ideas what this could have been. I have gone through the lists of diseases and deficiencies and nothing seems to add up with what she was experiencing. I'm a complete wreck over this and I just wish there was more I could've done for her.
     
  2. BYCOwner

    BYCOwner New Egg

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    I'm sorry guys. For some reason, I didn't think the first post I wrote went through because my computer locked up, but it looks like it was posted twice. I apologize for any confusion and double posting.
     
  3. WI FarmChick

    WI FarmChick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I am by no means a chicken expert at all. This Is just my thoughts.

    If the chickens you purchased did not have an immunity built up to cocci because they were never introduced to dirt before you brought them home.

    They could have been sick when you picked them up. Or you had a lingering disease on your property. Did you have chickens before? were they ever sick and you treated them? Chickens that have a disease then you treat them for their symptoms...the disease is still alive on your chickens....Those CHICKENS and YOU are now a carrier of that disease. The chickens that are now carriers will infect any and all new chickens on your property. (Unless certain measures are taken.) You... when going to the feed mill/store are now bringing the disease to where I shop and then I end up bringing it home to my flock without knowing.

    I am glad you decided to euthanize your chicken. I am so sorry that you had to do this.

    [FONT=Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]Here is something you should read if you haven't already.[/FONT]

    [FONT=Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]Bio-security is very important in the chickens world. This is a recent thread. [/FONT]Good luck with finding your answers.


    I was trying to incubate my eggs to sell the chicks this year. My first set of eggs died after piping, I only hatched one girl. I opened each egg to find out what happened so I could correct this problem. After this first chick survived we had several chicken owners at our farm picking out hens from one coop. After they collected a couple of hens, they came into my hatching room where my one lonely chick was kept so I could write up the paper work and show them the NPIP certification. The whole time this is going on my two week old chick was riding on my shoulder. I spent most of my day with her with me since she hatched. If she wasn't with me she would drive everyone nuts crying for me.
    [FONT=helvetica, sans-serif]I was out of chickens to sell, but my second batch hatched a week later. [​IMG] My baby chick was now four weeks old and thought she was mom to the new chicks. She taught each of them how to eat, scratch, drink and kept them warm at night. Every morning when I opened the lid she would jump on my lap. That's when she sneezed on me[​IMG], about two weeks after buyers had been in the coops and some had held her. I didn't think anything of it that day. The next day, when I got home I opened the lid to see my baby girl. The other chicks now a week old in the brooder were sneezing too. No other problems, just a simple sneeze.[​IMG][/FONT]
    [FONT=helvetica, sans-serif]I called the vet who got me in right away! They did a stool sample which came back negative and a blood test. He told me the white blood cells are slightly elevated and I had [/FONT]
    [FONT=helvetica, sans-serif]Mycoplasma[/FONT][FONT=helvetica, sans-serif]. He gave me Tylan to treat everyone with. I looked up the [/FONT][FONT=helvetica, sans-serif]disease[/FONT][FONT=helvetica, sans-serif] and freaked. [/FONT]
    [FONT=helvetica, sans-serif]After killing all my eggs in the bator and all my chicks[​IMG] I got on here and read a story of a woman who had the same problem. I don't remember who it was or where I found her story but I cried as she asked someone to come out and cull her birds. I cried for her, I cried because of all the people telling her not to cull them,[​IMG] to just treat them. We still have 8 birds to cull, and one more coop to bleach. I don’t want to pass this along to other chicken owners when I go out to buy feed or go groceries shopping. The disease can be spread on my clothing or hair, so I have been taking care of the remaining 8 to cull at night only, before going to bed.[/FONT]
    [FONT=helvetica, sans-serif]I didn't know I had it, none of my other chickens showed signs of it (and still don't), just those chicks. They didn't even show signs when I stressed them out by chasing, chatching and culling half the flock. I didn't know that the people who were coming into the coop could be carriers. I didn’t know that my adults could be the carriers and not show any symptoms. My adults have not been tested for it yet, but will be culled. [/FONT]
    [FONT=helvetica, sans-serif]I am going to start over. I have eggs on order. When those eggs hatch I have to wait two weeks then swab them and send the swabs to MSU. If they pass the Mycoplasma and NPIP testing then I would like to vaccinate them just like I vaccinate my dogs. I have contacted the company who makes the vaccine, but the only way they sell it is in quantities of 10. Each one would treat 2,000 birds and must be used as soon as I mix it. Each of the vials is around $60 which to me is worth it since each of those adult birds were $20, then $91 for NPIP testing, and I paid around $140 to be told the sneezing was a disease. After paying for that vet bill I discovered I could have swabbed my flock and sent the swabs to our vet school (MSU) and saved quite a bit of money.[/FONT]
    [FONT=helvetica, sans-serif]After losing all my chickens to a disease, I discover it is easily spread by people, other chickens, wild birds and passed through the eggs. Most chicken owners don’t even know they have this disease, because the chicken only shows signs when it’s stressed. My only symptom was a couple of sneezes from week old chicks! [/FONT]
    [FONT=helvetica, sans-serif]The hardest part about this disease and most chicken diseases is that a lot of people treat the chickens with antibiotics. When they no longer show any symptoms the flock owner keeps showing, selling and trading from the diseased flock, infecting others.[​IMG] [/FONT]

    [FONT=helvetica, sans-serif]Sometimes being a responsible pet owner is the hardest thing to do. [/FONT]


    [FONT=Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]Edited by Wickischickies - 4/12/12 at 10:21am[/FONT]
     
  4. HyVal

    HyVal Out Of The Brooder

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    I'm sorry to hear you lost your chick. I'm a new egg in the coop also and have so much to learn too.
    Your in a good place where people are willing to help, yours plea was just a little to fast before people could respond to you.
    Good luck with your other girls!

    HyVal
     
  5. BYCOwner

    BYCOwner New Egg

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    Apr 19, 2012
    Thank you both so much.

    I'm aware of the seriousness of whatever she had could have been a disease and could potentially infect the rest (and even be communicable), which is why I'm desperate to figure out what could have caused this. I have horses so I know how disease transmitability works and preventative measures. I've always been super anal about keepings things seperate and reducing the risk of contamination, etc. I can't wait to get home to double check on the rest of my flock after all of this.

    WI Farm Chick - they haven't hit dirt at all yet. They're still inside until this weekend. I had looked at cocci, but she had no bloody stool, no stool at all in fact. Can they still get this being indoor chicks right now? I also looked at thiamine deficiency as a possible culprit but it just didn't add up either.

    I'm racking my brain thinking of anything and everything I could've done differently, or should have done differently, and trying to figure out what this was and if it's communicable as well. We've been using antibacterial soap with everything and clorox and LOTS of water to clean everything that she may have touched and cleaned the cage with the other chicks in it as well. We were very careful not to touch our deceased chick when she was alive and then touch anything with the others.

    Their feed is Nutrena NatureWise, plus I give them XT seeds ground up with my mortar and pestle and alfalfa ground up as well. The Xts do not compose a large chunk of their diet.
     
  6. WI FarmChick

    WI FarmChick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 22, 2012
    Wisconsin
    I am sorry you are going thru this...There are so many diseases that have the same symptoms with minor differences it is hard to say what they have.
    I have heard of chickens having cocci without a bloody stool.
    I am glad you understand bio-security. There are a lot of chicken owners out there that do not. so sad.

    I hope you won't have to euthanize your flock. I do have a list of questions you could answer.
    Maybe someone might chime in if they had more info to go on. Here it is just in case.


    [FONT=Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]Here is a list of questions to help figure out the problem. Good Luck.[/FONT]

    [FONT=Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]1) What type of bird , age and weight (does the chicken seem or feel lighter or thinner than the others.).[/FONT]

    [FONT=Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]2) What is the behavior, exactly.[/FONT]

    [FONT=Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]3) How long has the bird been exhibiting symptoms?[/FONT]

    [FONT=Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]4) Are other birds exhibiting the same symptoms?[/FONT]

    [FONT=Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]5) Is there any bleeding, injury, broken bones or other sign of trauma.[/FONT]

    [FONT=Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]6) What happened, if anything that you know of, that may have caused the situation.[/FONT]

    [FONT=Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]7) What has the bird been eating and drinking, if at all.[/FONT]

    [FONT=Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]8) How does the poop look? Normal? Bloody? Runny? etc.[/FONT]

    [FONT=Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]9) What has been the treatment you have administered so far?[/FONT]

    [FONT=Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]10 ) What is your intent as far as treatment? For example, do you want to treat completely yourself, or do you need help in stabilizing the bird til you can get to a vet?[/FONT]

    [FONT=Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]11) Describe the housing/bedding in use.[/FONT]

    [FONT=Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]12) If you have a picture of the wound or condition, please post it. It may help.[/FONT]
     
  7. BYCOwner

    BYCOwner New Egg

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    Apr 19, 2012
    I put my answers next to the questions. Thank you so much for your help! I really really appreciate it.
     

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