Sick Pullet - What Can I Do?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by JenniferK, Jan 18, 2008.

  1. JenniferK

    JenniferK Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 7, 2007
    Northern California
    We have a girl who's about 9 months old that we noticed lingering in the nest box late yesterday afternoon, looking sleepy. I thought maybe she was just tired from laying her first egg so I didn't worry too much, but checked this morning and she was very lethargic, and didn't want to open her eyes. She's one of four, and the others all seem perfectly healthy. She also looked perfectly healthy until this morning. I brought her inside the house and now her breathing is very labored and she has white runny poop crusted on her feathers, and she is lying with her head and tail down. It seemed like her nose was running this morning, and now her mouth seems a little slimy, but her comb/feet/everything else looks normal.

    No changes in diet or anything else I can think of. The chickens get the run of our yard most of the day and are shut in at night. We don't leave anything chemical in the yard where they could get to it. We do have a wild bird feeder, and sometimes the chickens come and eat seed that's been spilled on the ground.

    I have called three vets now, and none of them will see a chicken. Not that I am anxious to spend hundreds on a two-dollar bird, but I can't stand to see her suffer. Does anyone have suggestions?
     
  2. dlhunicorn

    dlhunicorn Human Encyclopedia

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    Jan 11, 2007
    ...her head is down..

    is she able to move her head? (With botulism they will get a kind of neck paralysis),,,now, not saying this is what she has but just trying to match symptoms with possiblities...
    What feed is she on... has she been laying...what is the weather like where you are? Has she ever been wormed?​
     
  3. JenniferK

    JenniferK Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 7, 2007
    Northern California
    Thanks for the reply -- she actually just died. But to answer your questions, she's on organic layer pellets. I'm not sure if she was laying. We have two Ameraucanas, and get one egg between the two of them each day, along with two brown eggs from our two RIRs. We're near Sacramento, CA. We've had a few nights this week down to about 32, but days have been 45-55 degrees. She could move her head, I think she just didn't have the energy.

    We have never had them wormed -- I didn't know that was something we needed to do. I'll definitely look into it now.
     
  4. McGoo

    McGoo Chillin' With My Peeps

    Wow, so sorry. [​IMG] Seems like she died so quickly. I wonder what it was. YOu'll want to keep an eye out for the others so they don't get whatever it was.
     
  5. s6bee

    s6bee Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 1, 2007
    Western, NY
    I'm so sorry for your loss. I unfortunately don't have any feedback for you since I'm new to the chicken world.
    Hopefully it was just an isolated case and keep an eye on the others.

    Stephanie
     
  6. JenniferK

    JenniferK Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 7, 2007
    Northern California
    She did die pretty quickly, and we're feeling pretty glum around here. Thanks for the sympathy. I don't know if there was anything we could have done, but I'm going to see if we can find out what she had.
     
  7. BlueMoon

    BlueMoon Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 3, 2007
    Scenic Verbank, NY
    I'm so sorry.

    When one dies here, my first thought is always "is it something the other chickens have?". Would you feel comfortable about doing a necropsy?
     
  8. Scrambled Egg

    Scrambled Egg Flock Mistress

    Aug 29, 2007
    Fayetteville, NC
    so sorry jennifer for your loss...[​IMG]
     
  9. JenniferK

    JenniferK Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 7, 2007
    Northern California
    I don't know about doing a necropsy -- I don't know if I would be comfortable or qualified, but I sure would like to know what got her, and what we can do to prevent it from getting the others. I called the USDA number for reporting sick/dead birds, but that was after hours and now that it's Saturday I doubt we'll hear anything back.
     
  10. dlhunicorn

    dlhunicorn Human Encyclopedia

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    Jan 11, 2007
    Make sure those organic pellets are DRY ...
    Make sure there are no puddles of collected water and such which may have been a source of toxins or such...
    Look around very carefully for any forgotten grains of feed...they can get toxic very quickly when left especially when it is wet or underneath their bedding/straw and such.
     

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