Sick Rooster

electriclights

In the Brooder
Aug 18, 2018
9
2
14
Burlington, WA
Hello,

I have an 8 month only rooster that won't eat or drink. A few days ago I separated him from his ladies because he was acting drunk. He had horrible balance and would fall over.

He's always been thin, all my girls have good weight but he is thin.

I put him in my spare bathroom in a large traugh and I force him to drink water with electrolytes by a dropper. Today he won't even drink it and it just falls back out of his mouth. In addition to his pellet feed and scrambled eggs with cucumber and flax seed, I gave him corn. He won't eat any of it, and corn is like crack to him..

What can I do, I'm afraid he's not going to make it.
 

EggSighted4Life

Crossing the Road
5 Years
Apr 9, 2016
14,342
19,906
832
California's Redwood Coast
Have you checked his crop to see if it is full, empty, or squishy? Start there.

Have you seen any droppings from him? Is he standing or sitting? Eyes open or closed? What breed? What size flock in how much space? Recent weather conditions? How long have you had him? Do they free range? Any chance he got into an oil spill or other contaminate? What bedding do you use? Any recent changes or additions to the flock? Any snot or raspy breathing sounds? Are pupils round and iris the correct color?

Are you able to afford a vet? What is your location? Adding that to your profile can help other make more relevant suggestions without having to ask first. Many vets will not treat birds so you may need to look for an avian or exotic pet vet... maybe a livestock vet. Sorry so many questions, just helping look for clues.

You are right... he needs immediate attention. :barnie

Are you able to post pics of him or his droppings? Sometimes we can catch things. :fl

@Wyorp Rock, @Eggcessive, @ChickenCanoe got recommendations here?
 

Wyorp Rock

🐓 ❤ 🐛
Premium Feather Member
5 Years
Sep 20, 2015
36,730
51,671
1,332
Southern N.C. Mountains
Hello,

I have an 8 month only rooster that won't eat or drink. A few days ago I separated him from his ladies because he was acting drunk. He had horrible balance and would fall over.

He's always been thin, all my girls have good weight but he is thin.

I put him in my spare bathroom in a large traugh and I force him to drink water with electrolytes by a dropper. Today he won't even drink it and it just falls back out of his mouth. In addition to his pellet feed and scrambled eggs with cucumber and flax seed, I gave him corn. He won't eat any of it, and corn is like crack to him..

What can I do, I'm afraid he's not going to make it.
I'm sorry to hear about your cockerel.
If you can answer the questions posed by @EggSighted4Life it would be most helpful.
Photos of him and his poop would be good too.
 

ChickenCanoe

Enabler
Premium Feather Member
10 Years
Nov 23, 2010
32,970
27,476
1,077
St. Louis, MO
That doesn't sound good but it could be literally dozens of different things from bacterial, fungal, viral, parasitic, etc..
For supportive care, keep him warm (75-85F), keep trying to hydrate him and try to get a supplement into him. Nutri-Drench is an excellent go to product that gets vitamins, minerals and amino acids into the blood stream quickly. Call around to see if any of your feed stores carry it. I think TSC does. It is likely too late to order some online.
You should prepare to send him to your state poultry lab for necropsy to determine what ailed him. You could also send him there for humane euthanasia. You can find your lab from this list.
https://www.aphis.usda.gov/animal_health/nahln/downloads/all_nahln_lab_list.pdf
If you are fortunate enough to have a good avian vet nearby, especially one with poultry experience, that would be the way to go because without an accurate diagnosis, there's nothing that can be recommended other than the supportive care mentioned above.
ETA
If you aren't in the US, almost every country has livestock/poultry diagnostic labs.
 
Last edited:

rebrascora

Free Ranging
5 Years
Feb 14, 2014
7,127
8,753
556
Consett Co.Durham. UK
My guess would be Marek's disease, for which there sadly is no recognised treatment. The balance problem and thinness are both common symptoms of it and he is a prime age to suffer an outbreak of it. Once they stop eating it is usually in the terminal stages and I euthanize at that point but having had a diagnosis on my flock, I know for sure what I am dealing with and that is the kindest option. Since we do not know for sure if this is Marek's or not, it is harder to make that difficult decision. Marek's is incredibly common and one of the biggest killers of young birds along with coccidiosis. I use a good quality vitamin supplement to support their immune system but if you are struggling to even get water into him you are going to struggle to get vitamins in
If you can post a photo of him it might help us.
I would also encourage you to get a necropsy done by your state veterinary diagnostics lab if he dies. Marek's is infectious but birds don't all show symptoms at the same time. It has dormant phases and outbreaks are usually triggered by stress. What stresses one bird may not stress another and there is a minimum 3 weeks between infection and becoming symptomatic but it can be months or even years before they show signs of it.
 

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