Sarah giving up?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by mithious, Jul 26, 2014.

  1. I think my little Sarah is giving up.

    Two months ago, her eye got infected and swelled to the size of her head in a day. I was putting the young un's to bed and she came out of the coop and I took one look and swooped her up, finished the chores with her in one arm, and made her a comfy bed in a large tote in the cabin. I suspect she injured the eye, or was pecked, or both and then it got infected.

    I started antibiotics and then Corid, in her water and hand fed her water for 2 weeks or more. She had stopped eating and lost all her body weight in that time. She was quite tippy, as her right eye was so swollen and completely shut. The swelling slowly went down and she started opening that eye and I know she can see something out of it, but how much is unknown. The other eye is fine and she was doing so well learning how to eat and drink being tipsy due to not seeing well. She even went outside one day and walked around and ate some grass and one bug! With me right of course. I had to keep her in the shade, the sun was too bright with that eye still somewhat swollen.

    I finally got her eating a mix of wet food, with the antibiotic in it, still put the water in also, even though she couldn't drink on her own still.

    She seemed to be making progress. She started, not only eating on her own, but finally drinking on her own. I would get up every morning, thinking I would find her dead, but she sure did give it a great fight.

    Two days ago, she stopped eating again. I started giving her scrambled eggs and buttermilk and retreating her for cocci. She is still drinking on her own, but will not even eat the egg mix today. Her poop is all water now. Her poop started looking green, so maybe the infection destroyed her liver? I don't know....she and I sat daily and talked and had alone time. I really thought she was on the other side of it all and it was going to be a long but successful recovery.

    I think she just got tired of being sick. I held her in my lap today and said a prayer for her. Gave her a bath and blow dry, as she tried to clean the buttermilk that was spilled on her front, but couldn't, to make her more comfortable. She doesn't act like she is in pain like she did in the beginning. Again, I think she just gave up. It's been close to 2 months, I think, since this started and I probably will never know if it was internal, or she just lost her will to thrive? I'm leaning towards the not thriving.

    No other chickens are having similar symptoms, but they are back on the Corid and I will taper to a maintainance dose for a bit, to make sure this time, they don't get reinfected, or will build the immunity to this parasite. The rain has not helped with the cocci this year at all.

    Please say a prayer for little Sarah or send her good thoughts, if you would please. I hope I am wrong, but don't think so. She hasn't any body fat left to sustain ANY period of no food again. Looks like I will be saying good bye to a beautiful little 4 month old Plymouth Barred Rock pullet soon! At least I know we both did our best! She is the sweetest little pullet and a real fighter. I wish she could keep on fighting but not thinking she can.

    Thanks for listening!
  2. N F C

    N F C booooo!

    Dec 12, 2013
    I'm so sorry to read about your little Sarah. It sounds like you both put up a good fight, but maybe she's just tired now and ready for a long sleep. It hurts to lose a member of our flock family. Prayers for you and Sarah, keep us posted on what happens please.
  3. casportpony

    casportpony Team Tube Feeding Captain & Poop Inspector General

    So sorry. [​IMG]

  4. Thanks, both of you. I never would've thought I would get so attached to a chicken but after the past 2 months and daily care, and she's just so appreciative of everything done for her, I did.

    I think it's this darn cocci and she just didn't have it in her to go through the fight again. She isn't moving any more on her own. Just sits there, all ruffled up, quiet and seems peaceful. I don't think she's in pain any more though.

    I held her this morning and she drank a few drops of the corid water but basically refused to really drink and hasn't eaten a thing since day before yesterday.

    She used to say thanks and Hi whenever I walked past her tote which I put in a place that I would do that, so I could check her often. No more little trills of thank you, when I walk by [​IMG]I can't believe I'm crying over a chicken!!!!

    Kathy, do you have any idea how long this is going to take? I just can't bring myself to chop her head off. Dang this cocci crap [​IMG] I don't think I'm going to do a necropsy, as I am comfortable with this being a bad infection, and now her inability to fight the cocci and just plain giving up the fight. I actually pleaded with her this morning to keep fighting, but that ain't gonna happen.

    If I have another bird drop, I will definitely have a necropsy done on it. but none of the other chickens have anything like she did. Just the re-infection of the cocci. I put everyone on a full dose of the corid again and am going to do a maintain dose for a bit also, as the other 2 treatments didn't work.

    I'm really going to miss her!!!! Even my kittie is too. Kittie is sitting next to the tote and peeks in, every so often to check her also....this sucks!!!!
  5. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Crossing the Road

    Apr 3, 2011
    southern Ohio
    Sorry about your little chicken. As you know coccidiosis can lower their immunity to other things later to enteritis and other diseases. She may have gotten some respiratory problem that developed into air sacculitis, or an overwhelming e.coli infection. Secondary infections are what kills in poultry most of the time, but it's never easy when they are pets.
  6. Thank you Eggcessive. The thing is, the chickens are not pets, they are livestock. Yes, I know that secondary infections occur during times like this. She isn't showing signs of respiratory distress. I really think it's that she wasn't strong enough to fight another round of the cocci and has given up. We seem to be fighting a different strain of cocci this year. Either that, or it multiplied in the past year on the property.

    She is showing classic signs of cocci, again. As are the other birds. Even the year and a half olds. Which should've built immunities by now. So my best guess is a different strain.

    I practice VERY strict biosecurity, but there have been a few times that I might have messed up! I have rubber boots, a couple sets of clothes for just the chicken chores, a foot wash outside each coop, and wash not only my hands, but my arms also and for a while, not some quick ok it's done kinda thing.

    We have had a horribly wet spring and summer also so that sure didn't help matters!

    The other birds are showing signs of responding to the Corid, so I am positive that is what they are battling, and as for poor Sarah, I think that is what is going on with her too. I DID take her outside once, and let her walk around and eat some grass and a bug. Maybe she got re-infected then? I don't know for sure, it's possible I made a mistake and forgot something in my biosecurity process also....I'm already doing the what if, did I, ect.

    I agree that it could be some kind of secondary infection, but as I said, she is showing classic signs of cocci and she has given up trying. I don't feel comfortable tubing as I have never done it ( nor do I have the supplies to do so, I would have to order them online and that takes time I don't think she has ), and she is so emaciated, so I'm not sure it would help anyway. I've done everything I could possibly do. Sometimes they lose the battle or just lose the will to thrive...She has had so much meds I don't think her system can handle any more or is even utilizing them.

    The two days I was able to get the scrambled eggs and buttermilk into her, she was still drinking, not eating, but drinking, so had the Corid in her. I read a necropsy that Nambroth put up on one of her birds and even though she had treated her bird that died with Corid and Sulmet, the bird STILL showed cocci in the necropsy. She said she was quite surprised by that and I was too, when I read it. That led me to believe that there comes a point when a birds body can not utilize meds correctly and nothing we do is going to help when they decide to give up the fight.

    I'm still trying to get the Corid water into her, but she only get's a few drops in then refuses more. She is refusing to eat also. Been trying and pleading with her to do both. I honestly think she has lost the will to thrive and the cocci has overwhelmed her to the point that she gave up. It's been a long 2 months for her.

    Atleast she seems to be resting comfortably and isn't crying out in pain as she did in the beginning of all this. That was horrible!!! I've been holding her off and on today and she tries to nuzzle my neck like she was doing but is too weak now to really do it. I'm leaking again....

    Thanks for the reminder and the compassion Eggcessive. I've been reading and reading this forum for the past 1 1/2 years ( there about ) and learn new things all the time. I sure do appreciate all of you and all the information that you have all provided for us!
  7. Oh and just incase you missed it, this all started with an eye infection. No signs of a respiratory infection though. I think she either injured her eye, was pecked, or both....and it got infected. There was no discharge of any kind, no breathing issues and no other birds showing similar signs or ANY signs of respiratory illness. Also, the cocci IS the secondary infection, I believe, that is taking her from us [​IMG] I see no other signs other than cocci signs....although I can't see inside her. It's possible that some internal infection is there I guess...but nothing is working for her any more.
  8. casportpony

    casportpony Team Tube Feeding Captain & Poop Inspector General

    Sounds like it might be time to try tubing fluids. Can you go get a tube from a vet or aquarium air line from a pet store? You'll also need a 35ml or 60ml syringe. If she hasn't been drinking at least 100ml per 2.2 pounds of weight, she is probably very dehydrated and that needs to be corrected before she eats. With tubing, you could very easily give her the Corid and I'd probably also give her the strongest antibiotic I could find.

  9. Kathy, there is nothing here. I am so rural, I am lucky to have a TSC. I looked for tubing but found none. The local vet won't touch chickens. I tried last year to have a fecal float done. They refused. Said they don't work with chickens. No other vets any where near here. I live in a little community, nestled in the mountains of far northern NH. Our options are VERY limited. I went into town the other day, to check that store for the baytril, and they don't have fish equiptment. I thought they did, but they don't. I don't think she has the time for me to order it online either.

    I'll get a prepaid credit card, next time I can get in town, and order the tubing and some stronger antibiotics, for future use, but I don't think it's going to be soon enough for this time unfortunately. I would also need a walk through on it...thanks though for the suggestion. I should've had it on hand and learned how. Kicking myself now!!! Should've been part of my med kit!!!

    It's the end of the month...I don't have the 50 bucks they require to activate the credit card AND the cash for gas for another trip until the begining of the month. The gas tank is on near empty. Unfortunately I didn't think of it when I was there. She was doing so well when I went, it didn't enter my mind, and it should have. Hard lesson to learn right here....kicking myself again!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
  10. N F C

    N F C booooo!

    Dec 12, 2013
    Don't beat yourself up over the "woulda/coulda/shoulda" scenarios. None of us are perfect but as long as we do our best and learn as we go, that's what's important. Take care.

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