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sick hens- need advice please

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by VKat, Nov 3, 2014.

  1. VKat

    VKat Chillin' With My Peeps

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    This is my first little flock, and I have no experience of my own to draw on yet. Hoping you guys on here can help me make smart choices.
    I made a very poor one and it may have created this mess I'm so worried about.
    Right now we have one bird in quarantine- I noticed she seemed unwell and separated her. She was not going about the yard with the others and would stand hunched a bit staring, looking miserable. I wondered if she may be egg bound or something else. This bird is a new addition. We got two adult Buff Orphingtons from a local farmer. I had been wanting this breed so the chance to get some laying age hens was too tempting. When I saw this hen, she looked kinda shabby. I was assured that it's just the molt.
    Her buddy seemed fine, and the farm was clean etc. But this hen's feathers continued to not come in. And then this unhappy behavior. So I brought her inside and set her up cozy and quiet.
    I noticed some pasty butt, and that the naked skin of all her unfeathered rear seemed red. So we cleaned her up.

    The next day she started having a massive amount of watery poo. Let me say it seems like an alarming amount of fluid to be coming from such a small thing. The newspapers are saturated. It's mostly all just fluid, with some actual poo. No blood or odd colors. Just a lot of wet.

    Then my healthy hens outside started sneezing, and I noticed some wet nostrils.

    We ran to a store and got VetRx, and some antibiotics , and some vitamins/electrolytes. The five outside hens are all sneezing and have different symptoms than the hen I have inside away from them.
    I'm so freaked out wondering what could be wrong, and am I doing the right things?

    I have confined the hens to their run so they won't spread germs around the yard and run the risk of getting my turkeys sick.

    If anyone can look at these symptoms and advise me I would be very very grateful!


    This is a shot of the tiny scab marks I am seeing on the shabby chicken. I freaked out at first thinking it was the pox, but I read that starts out white. Should I be worried?
    [​IMG]



    This is one of the sneezing chickens that's in her normal run. We saw crusty nostrils and this one had some eye bubbles. We applied warmed VetRx to all the sneezing chickens as the instructions say to do. I am also noticing some reddened skin around the corners of the mouth and eyes a bit too. Is this redness a symptom of something?
    [​IMG]

    a sneezign chicken, but she has a few spots too. I'm so worried.
    [​IMG]

    Lastly, This is the shabby chicken's lower back. Her feathers have not been growing back in and this spot and her bottom looks even more naked. When we were washing off her butt, we noticed this lump. Is that an ingrown feather?
    [​IMG]


    Any info or advice anyone can share would be really appreciated.
    Signed a very worried would be chicken keeper.
     
  2. VKat

    VKat Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sorry. I meant to include that two sneezing hens are also couching. We are on day 2 of tetracycline added into their water.

    Should I be worried about needing to cull them? Is this possibly Mycoplasma gallisepticum?

    There are so many sites online, I feel like I've over flooded myself with info :/
     
  3. VKat

    VKat Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hello? Anyone? Should I keep with the VetRx and tetracycline and hope for the best, or cull these birds?
    I would be really sad if this spread to my turkeys.
    What would you more experienced keepers do?
     
  4. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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    Do the sick chickens have a bad odor around their faces? The last picture in post #1 looks like the oil gland which is normal. But I would look the over especially under the vent for lice or mites. This sounds like one of the respiratory diseases such as infectious bronchitis MG, coryza, or others, but with your symptoms of eye bubbles, snots, sneezing and coughing, it could be MG, or even coryza if there is a bad odor. Tetracycline in the water may help if they are drinking enough of it, but Tylan 50 injection or Tylan Soluble Powder is more potent. For coryza, most recommend sulfa drugs such as Sulfadimethoxine or Sulmet plus Tylan. Since you didn't quarantine, and all are now exposed, I would recommend calling your state vet to request how to get a bird tested. Necropsy of a dead bird can get you an answer, but blood or nasal swabs can be done on sick birds to tell you what you are dealing with. Your flock now has become all carriers, so you should close your flock to any new birds, and none going out of the flock. Hatching eggs can also be carriers of MG. Read over his list to compare your symptoms: http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/ps044
     
  5. VKat

    VKat Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks for that link. Very concise info. From reading this I think it is MG...
    All of our chickens came from local farms already grown. Looking back I can see where I have made lots of mistakes.
     
  6. VKat

    VKat Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thank you again, very much for all the info.

    I feel so terrible about all this. But I am going to cull my flock. I have 4 turkeys and also a pair of pheasants who are not showing any signs of illness. The pheasants have their own enclosure, and my turkeys have their "fort" and own big flight pen- but all of the bird areas border the garden where I (used to) let the chickens go around and eat bugs etc.
    It seems like the only way to keep the others safe is to eliminate the infected birds.
    Maintaining a closed flock that may face chronic issues isn't seeming like a good idea.

    [​IMG] This is the hardest, worst learning curve ever.

    I think that after this I will never ever buy an adult bird from a local farmer. Never ever again.

    I am looking for reputable, NPIP certified hatcheries that also provide vaccines. If I only do that, then I can know the birds are safe.

    I also will not ever introduce new members the way that happened. Never again.
     
  7. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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    I'm sorry about your flock. You can take a little time and think about this. You could medicate your chickens and close your flock, and then see how they do from there. And I would recommend either sending one to the state vet to be put sown and necropsied--then you would know what they have for sure. Testing also could be done instead of the necropsy by drawing blood or a nasal swab locally. Your turkeys could be carriers of MG also if you don't cull them, so they could spread it to new chickens. There are stronger drugs that you can use such as Tylan Soluble Powder or Tylan 50 injectable, plus Denagard that many people with MG use to treat, as well as give 1/2 strength on a monthly basis for prevention. Might be good to do research for a few days, so you don't regret your decision. Here is an excerpt from the link above on MG:

    Mycoplasma gallisepticum

    Synonyms: MG, chronic respiratory disease (CRD), infectious sinusitis, mycoplasmosis
    Species affected: chickens, turkeys, pigeons, ducks, peafowl and passerine birds.
     
  8. VKat

    VKat Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The chickens and turkeys don't mix... maybe they will be okay?

    My husband and I talked about this a lot last night, and keeping a closed flock isn't what we want to do.

    Will a swab test be able tell if the turkeys are asymptomatic carriers?
     

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