Silkie Chick with a "Cold"? What to do?


10 Years
May 18, 2010
I have a silkie chick that is approximately 2 weeks old. It has been fine and happy until this afternoon where I noticed its peep was deeper in pitch. I went to clean poop off its feet and heard crackling when it breathed. It also seems to sneeze slightly every so often and likes to sleep.

What can I do for this baby? I just separated it from the others and brought it inside with some water+poly vi sol, food, a feather duster, a mirror, and a lamp with a 60w bulb shining on it. Right now it's upset it's alone and peeping loudly.
Last edited:
I don't know much but for starters you can try using vet rx with a q-tip and rub it on his nose and in his mouth that could help stat to clear up any mucus and maybe help him breath better. Respiratory problems can be hard to cure in chicks good luck to you!
I hope it gets better!!
Aww I really hope it isn't too serious
. She's in my room now and occassionally peeps loudly and then goes to eat some. I guess I'll just keep an eye on her until I can hear her peep go back to its original pitch and it doesn't have that crackling noise
. At least she's still eating though!

I just hope the other chicks don't get it
Well today she seems to be doing a bit better. She still sneezes every once in awhile, but I can only hear tiny crackles when she chirps and I can't tell where it's coming from. She's eating and drinking fine and took her poly vi sol, has no discharge of any kind, and is happy to wander the quarantine tank after warming up and crying out for a buddy.

Would it be a bad idea to stick her sister in there with her? I've got one other silkie and they've been with each other since hatching...but if it's contagious I don't want the other to get it.

How long should it take for symptoms to be apparent and worsen if it's something contagious? How do I know if the crackle I hear is her chest or just her beak or stuff being ground up in her crop? How long should I keep her separate once she starts feeling better? What other symptoms should I be on the lookout for?
i've never had a baby chick develop a respiratory infection. It's more common for them to get them once they are older and out on dirt or around other chickens that may be carriers. i have heard of brooder pneumonia, but i think it kills fairly quickly. So that probably isn't what she has. What are you using as bedding? Perhaps it's an issue of her being allergic to shavings or whatever you are using.

i wouldn't use the VetRX, especially on such a young bird, as it can be very irritating to their sensitive membranes.
That's what I was thinking, and considering it has been fine up until yesterday is what's weird to me. She's actually doing quite well and has been eating and pooping all afternoon. She happily ate some egg yolk and grit I put in there, the only problem is her sneezing it seems. The bedding we were using was puppy pads until yesterday, now that I think about it, where I changed to pine shavings for the first time. They've had aspen shavings in a pan below the brooder and the breeder had pine in her brooders...but maybe the sudden change to pine shavings made its respiratory tract a little irritated?
i would give it another day or two. Maybe keep her on paper towels for now. If she is eating and drinking and doing fine otherwise, i would suspect an outside irritant. But it's better to be on the safe side and make sure she is okay before potentially exposing the other chicks to something.

Oh, also, in looking back at your post, chicks will peep loudly if they are too cold. Do you have a thermometer to make sure the temp in the brooder is 80-85 degrees?
I do not, but I have one downstairs near the brooder I can grab real quick. I also have a 75w bulb I think I'll swap out to make sure she's warm.

Thanks so much for the help!

New posts New threads Active threads

Top Bottom