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Sick Guinea

Discussion in 'Guinea Fowl' started by EquestrianGal, Nov 11, 2011.

  1. EquestrianGal

    EquestrianGal Out Of The Brooder

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    My guinea hen is sick. She is about 4 months old. I have had her on antibiotics under a heat lamp for several days (she can get away from the heat lamp, but she generally sits right next to it. She is eating and drinking less--I don't think she has eaten at all today.

    Mostly it has just been listlessness and ruffled feathers. Occasionally she will do this wear stretching thing with her neck (extend it out, tuck it back in, extend it out, bring it back in). But today, her neck is swollen, right up near her head, on either side, almost like where lymph glands would be in a human.

    Is there anything else I can do? I don't know what is wrong with her. Her two siblings and the other hen all seem fine.

    If she dies, I am going to call the extension office and see if they want to do a necropsy to figure out the disease (she isn't the first guinea to get sick here, although none particularly recently, none ever had the swollen neck, and all my chickens are fine). Guineas and chickens are housed together, so it is either something different in their diet (they all freerange during the day) or something that chickens aren't affected by.
     
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2011
  2. PeepsCA

    PeepsCA Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 28, 2011
    Big Oak Valley, CA
    Oooh does not sound good for her [​IMG]

    Have you felt her crop for any kind of impaction and her neck/throat area for anything that might be stuck/wedged in there? The neck stretching thing makes me wonder if something is in there like a small stick, foxtail, piece of wire... could be anything she picked up while free ranging.

    Another possibility... I've read about (but never experienced) is that gape worms infest the throat and crop area, (may be why she's stretching her neck), so you may want to do a little research on them and check her for any signs of them, they may be visible in the throat.

    As far as what else you can do for her... I'd try giving her some plain yogurt with a syringe (if she won't eat any on her own), since the beneficial bacteria in her gut are being wiped out by the antibiotics (use a syringe without the needle, and try to give her a few ccs twice a day, 1 cc at a time - she may sling it everywhere, so be ready for a mess). Feed stores and tractor supply usually have probiotics in a tube, and those might be easier to deal with than the yogurt, but the yogurt will provide her some protein and nutrients. Egg yolk or scrambled eggs added to her feed would get some extra protein into her and the yellow color of the egg may possibly stimulate her to eat. If she is not eating on her own you may want to make a little mash of her feed and the egg and try to get some small bites into her a few times a day. Poultry electrolytes with vitamins already in them or some poly-vi-sol and pedialyte may help stimulate her appetite too, as well as perk her up. If she is not drinking on her own you will have to dip her beak several times a day to get a few swallows into her each time. (Hopefully all this won't stress her out too much and make things worse, but you need to get something into her, especially fluids or chances that she'll improve are going to dwindle rapidly).

    Sorry I don't have any better advice for you, other than what I've suggested the only other thing I could suggest would be to get her to a vet, but I know that is always costly [​IMG] Good luck with her, hope she improves [​IMG]

    If worse comes to worst and she doesn't make it and you are able to get the necropsy done, please let us know what they find out.
     
  3. Fenika

    Fenika Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Guineas don't have lymph nodes, they only have a bursa and a thymus fyi. The later is in their neck though and can get cancer (from Mereks and such). But aside from that, trachea or crop/esophagus is likely, and Peeps has some good points. Just be careful if you have to syringe or force feed her. If she aspirates she could die.

    Can you get any high quality pictures of the swelling? Is it as bad on both sides or is one side more swollen?

    Definitely do a necropsy. If not the extension agent, then maybe a vet, but check the price first. They might not be able to pin it down without expensive tests, but if it's Mereks they'll see tell tale signs just from the basic necropsy. There's also some other stuff they might be able to tell of course.

    Sometimes just one bird gets noticeably sick but they all might have a little something, to some degree. If the antibiotics don't help, it could be that it's not bacterial or that she's on the wrong antibiotics.
     
  4. EquestrianGal

    EquestrianGal Out Of The Brooder

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    Thanks guys for your replies! I have been gone all day and so was unable to get pictures (getting dark now, so will try tomorrow). The gape worms actually fits the symptoms pretty well, so I have started her on treatment for that (and the rest of the flock). I have given her yogurt already, she seems to do better with foods like that anyway (loves bits of apples too).

    I really appreciate your input and will keep you updated.
     
  5. Fenika

    Fenika Chillin' With My Peeps

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    How's she doing today?
     

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