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Sick bird - pale, yellow faeces, losing weight

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Lanark, Jun 10, 2008.

  1. Lanark

    Lanark New Egg

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    Jun 10, 2008
    I though at first it was worms and I gave her cider vingegar in her water and this seemed to perk her up a bit but in the last day or so she seems to be getting weaker. She's lost weight and seems to be unable to see clearly as she just pecks "at" the food rather than into it.

    She's had a pale comb for a few weeks and hasn't laid for over a month.

    I'm probably going to take her to the vet tomorrow, but does anyone have any idea of what this might be?
     
  2. Wynette

    Wynette Moderator Staff Member

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    Sep 25, 2007
    Michigan
    How old is she? What breed? What conditions is she kept in (coop? run? what type of bedding?)

    ACV will not eliminate worms; it will keep them at bay if you do not have an infestation, but if she's got a worm issue, ACV will not help. What are you feeding her?

    OH! Sorry - I should have said....WELCOME TO BYC!!! Glad to have you!!!
     
    Last edited: Jun 10, 2008
  3. Nupine

    Nupine Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 21, 2007
    Ohio
    Same questions-But [​IMG] !!!!!!!!!!
     
  4. Lanark

    Lanark New Egg

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    Thanks - sorry I didn't give enough information last time.

    She's about 4 years old and is a speckeldy hen, like this (this isn't her, just a generic hen):

    [​IMG]

    She's allowed free range of the garden (apart from the veg beds) going into a coop at night. We have two other birds (a black rock and a blue star) and neither have shown any signs of illness or lethargy at all. She sleeps on a bedding of wood shavings which is usually changed at least once a week, but recently mre regularly. There's a little red mite in the coop, but not by any stretch an infestation, we kill as many as we can every time the bedding is changed.

    If she survives the night I'll get her to the vet - she seemedd very weak today.

    Oh, and we feed her layers pellets in the morning and corn in the afternoon, unless we've given them something different left over from our meals, such as pasta or rice. She's been off the pellets for a few weeks, so I've given her extra corn.
     
    Last edited: Jun 10, 2008
  5. sammi

    sammi Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 21, 2007
    Southeast USA
    check the crop....feel for any lump..
    in the morning before she eats, it should be empty, or almost flat..

    I've seen them when they have an impacted crop..they peck out of habit and hunger..
    but don't really eat..

    has she ever laid soft shelled eggs?

    have a fecal float test done to check for worms and cocci.

    she may have a bad case of worms..
     
    Last edited: Jun 10, 2008
  6. chickenzoo

    chickenzoo Emu Hugger

    Worms and mites will cause weight loss and anemia, weakness etc... I rotate between Ivermectian(kills most worms and mites) and fenabenazole. Coccidia can also be a factor - not killed by either above, you would need amprolium for that. I give Red Cell (horse supplement), scrambled eggs and anything rich in protein for anemia.A fecal by a Vet would be worth it.:aww
     
  7. Lanark

    Lanark New Egg

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    Jun 10, 2008
    Well, I'm taking her to the vet this morning.

    In summary, her symptoms are:

    Pale comb
    runny yellow poo
    general lethargy
    not eating much
    not laying

    I'll let you all know what the vet's advice is.
     
  8. dlhunicorn

    dlhunicorn Human Encyclopedia

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    I think the problem is a combination of worms and the "red mite" (>this will cause the anemia you are seeing > for every mite you see there are a hundred you do not)
    Ask you vet for the ivermectin (it is broad spectrum whereas most other wormers will treat only one particular type of worm)

    You really need to tackle the mite problem... they are wickedly difficult to get rid of and I sugest you spray down your coop with a permethrin or pyrethin based insecticide (be sure your birds are nowhere near the area and completely remove all bedding etc incl food and water sources from the area while doing this and replace with new afterwards >do not use straw as this provides a good hollow space for the mites to hide in) ... you may need to do a few times .
     
    Last edited: Jun 11, 2008
  9. Wynette

    Wynette Moderator Staff Member

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    Sep 25, 2007
    Michigan
    Lanark - please let us know what the vet had to say. Dlhunicorn has years of experience with chicken illness, so definitely take her advice. Just wanted to add that when you get the mites under control, there is a disinfectant that you can use in coops that should help keep them at bay - it's called Tek Trol (I'm sure there are others as well), and it comes in an aeresol can as well as a gallon jug that you dilute for use in a spray bottle. You can get into all the corners with it, which I find very helpful - especially if your coop is wood, like mine. Tiny things like mites can get way down deep into cracks & corners!! GOOD LUCK!! [​IMG]
     
  10. MrsChicken1954

    MrsChicken1954 Out Of The Brooder

    I came across this post by accident when I was looking for something else. I had a hen like this, a cuckoo marans (which is half of what a speckledy is made of I think). Apparently it is common in that breed. The vet gave me antibiotics for her but she continued to get worse and had no appetite, even for treats. I started giving her a 5ml syringe of red wine (yes really) three times a day into her beak. I figured she had nothing to lose and had heard it might help. She struggled a bit to start with but soon calmed down (drunk probably) and after a couple of days she started eating again. I continued this treatment for a week, keeping her separate but within sight of the others. I'm not sure how it works but I think something in the wine kills something in the chicken. This was last August and she is absolutely fine now and lays the largest eggs I have ever seen from a chicken. If you are worried about giving a little alcohol to a chicken you can try very slightly diluted cider vinegar, but it must be a very strong solution to do anything. Just a little in the water won't work - try 1 part vinegar to 2 parts water.
     

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