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Sick chickens?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Emmapee, Dec 15, 2012.

  1. Emmapee

    Emmapee Out Of The Brooder

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    Nov 7, 2012
    Colorado
    This is only my 2nd year doing the backyard flock thing, but I'm beginning to get a little concerned with my two girls. Jackson, the RIR, is usually super active and always out of the coop and being bossy. Butters has been more of a coop bird, but she has been up in the coop way more as well. I know it's winter, but last year they were still out every day, even when it was around 0. So Jackson is our layer (Butters has recently stopped laying due to old age) and lately her eggs have been tiny! I am worried that she is sick or not feeling well and I'm not sure what to do. I reallllly cannot afford a vet, especially the kind that sees chickens. They had mites this summer, and I've always put the mite dust in their dust bathing area... I thought it subsided, but maybe I'm wrong. So, any advice? I was wondering if maybe I need to worm them or there's some sort of treatment I can give from home.
     
  2. ChickensAreSweet

    ChickensAreSweet Heavenly Grains for Hens

    What are you feeding?
     
  3. Emmapee

    Emmapee Out Of The Brooder

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    Nov 7, 2012
    Colorado
    Mostly layer feed. But, we also give them all sorts of table scraps and let them free range for a few hours each day.
     
  4. cowcreekgeek

    cowcreekgeek Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 14, 2012
    Hurricane, WV
    Pretty much any treatment your birds will ever require, thankfully, you can do yourself, and at home ...

    Start by switchin' their water out in the morning w/ an astringent solution of Apple Cider Vinegar, at the rate of four teaspoons to the gallon (but not in galvanized metal containers). This will help to remove any coatings w/in the mouth, throat and intestines, which improves nutrient/vitamin uptake, boosts their immune systems, helps 'em more easily expel mucus, and the list of benefits goes on and on, just like I do ~'-)

    You could check the birds very closely for signs of lice/mites, or just pick up a fresh can of poultry/garden dust w/ permethrin, and directly work it into their feathers 'til you're sure it's on their skin (esp. underneath, around the vent area, and underneath their wings). Sprinkle it liberally around on the floor of the coop, and anywhere else you can think of, save for where they're laying the eggs, but I'd clean the nestboxes really well, and maybe use murphy's oil soap or some other treatment on the wood w/in 'em, and cover the roosts w/ it as well.

    As to internal parasites, esp. when you suspect your birds are ill, I'm a big fan of amprolium (for coccidia) and fenbendazole (for worms, except tapes), both of which are ridiculously safe, yet still very effective ... the amprolium blocks thiamine, to which the coccidia are 50 times more sensitive to than the chickens are, and fenbendazole has been tested to 100 times the suggested dosage w/o producing any negative impact upon the chickens.

    If you see/suspect tapeworms? Albendazole, instead. But, fenbendazole at the minimum rate of 20 mg/kg of body weight for three consecutive days will eliminate 100% of tracheal worms (gapeworms), along w/ everything else, and -- absolutely safe for even the sickest of birds, at this level ~'-)
     
    2 people like this.
  5. Emmapee

    Emmapee Out Of The Brooder

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    Nov 7, 2012
    Colorado
    Thank you sooo much. This was REALLY helpful and I'm going to start the apple cider and the fenbendazole today! I don't think they have the coccidia, but I will keep an eye out for it! Thanks again, this was the reply I was looking for!
     
  6. cowcreekgeek

    cowcreekgeek Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 14, 2012
    Hurricane, WV
    No problem ... now, although it's safe? I wouldn't dose your chicken(s) at the dinner table, most esp. not on their matching place settings ~'-)
     

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