Sneezing from .... ***UPDATE*** Pasteurella ... questions!

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by junglebird, Oct 24, 2010.

  1. junglebird

    junglebird Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 29, 2010
    Southern Oregon
    My Australorp rooster has been sneezing consistently for a week. The BO rooster, who is less mature, has sneezed a few times over the past couple of days, which is how it started with the Australorp. The birds don't have any other symptom: good appetite, poo, behavior, respiration, and no discharges, robust combs and wattles. None of the pullets (Marans, EE, BPR, NHR) are sneezing. They're all within a couple weeks of 20 weeks old.

    When the Australorp rooster started sneezing I took stock of the recent status of the flock:
    - Australorp had been acting more aggressive for about a week or so - more crowing, challenging me
    - they had gotten into the compost heap several times, but the pile is pretty clean, not smelly at all, no visible mold
    - they began ranging the remnants of the vegetable garden (some visible fungi under the mulch)
    - the rooster's tail feathers have a white streak across them, dating from about the time he started sneezing, I noticed some white tipped feathers on on the necks of two of the pullets around the same time.
    - all the birds look vibrant, alert, active, glossy feathers, healthy appetites

    Since the rooster started sneezing, here are further changes:
    - the Austrlorp is starting to mount the pullets (the pullets aren't laying yet)
    - the BO rooster is now sneezing just a little, and is molting
    - our weather has turned chilly and wet
    - bedding change from dried leaves to deep bedding with straw
    - feed change from starter to layer ration
    - change from chick grit to chicken grit

    I've started putting ACV in the water, and feeding extra protein (mostly yogurt) and some garlic. We're in Southern Oregon - doesn't get all that cold here, so they are in a fresh air coop with 3 sides wind blocked.

    I haven't quarantined yet, having read that sneezing on it's own isn't much to worry about. But now that the 2nd rooster is sneezing, should I separate them? Should I put the roosters in the greenhouse for extra warmth till they stop sneezing?

    I don't want to baby them too much, but these are my first birds, I want to be sure I'm doing all I should. It seems that they are at an age that's ripe with transition, akin to our adolescence, I guess. Can the stress of that cause this?

    If the problem is mold from either the compost heap or the remnants of the melon patch, would they have other symptoms?
    Should I clear the straw out of the coop to see if that's the culprit?

    I also noticed today, that the 2 roosters and one hen have redder looking feet than normal. They've been out in the run today, in the rain, would that do it?

    Am I being a chicken-hypochondriac?

    Thanks in advance for your help!
     
    Last edited: Nov 1, 2010
  2. Koolduck

    Koolduck Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 18, 2009
    Central KY
    I just noticed that my BO rooster who is 1.5 yrs old, was wheezing last night at coop lock up...he has been VERY aggressive lateley too...hope I didnt do any damage to him as one day I pushed him down to the ground by the neck to secure him to pick up...he has found that he is no longer top dog in the flock and has kept to himself for the last couple of days. Everyone is molting...no other symptoms displayed by any of the flock....I dont know?!
     
  3. junglebird

    junglebird Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 29, 2010
    Southern Oregon
    So, am I just worrying over nothing? Help! [​IMG]
     
  4. herefordlovinglady

    herefordlovinglady It Is What It Is

    Jun 23, 2009
    Georgia
    Not too sure if I can be any help. My flock was sneezing pretty regularly. No other changes in behavior -- happy hens and roos. I did put DE in their food and the sneezing has subsided. not sure if that helped them or not, but i have noticed a difference.
     
  5. junglebird

    junglebird Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 29, 2010
    Southern Oregon
    herefordlovinglady - Do you think the DE dried up mold or other irritants? Why do you think it helped?

    Koolduck - your BO roo still sneezing?

    Update:
    Today my Buff Orpington rooster (the second one to start sneezing) sounded a little raspy in his breathing for a short time. I also was feeling like he was too skinny - molting or not. Then I noticed one of the pullets "gaping" opening her mouth and stretching her neck out - an indication of respiratory disturbance. Clear there's a spreading infection.

    After scouring the internet and consulting with chicken owners I know, I decided the best thing to do, expenses to be suffered, was to take the Buff Orp to the vet and find out what this thing is, since my entire flock is at risk. Turns out this rooster's only 4 lbs, which is kinda skinny for a 21 week old. Vet said he didn't hear anything suspicious through the stethoscope, but didn't like how thin the rooster is. He took a throat culture, and the 3 with signs/symptoms are on injectable Baytril, 2xday for 2 weeks. I'm also starting quarantine for sneezers and gapers tomorrow morning.

    I don't like what I'm reading about Baytril, any comments? (ps - injecting a chicken ain't so hard ... they gave us insulin needles, which are miniscule).

    I'll keep you posted.
     
  6. junglebird

    junglebird Chillin' With My Peeps

    184
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    Aug 29, 2010
    Southern Oregon
    Another pullet started gaping today, so now I'm injecting 4 with the Baytril. I've got those 4 in a "hospital unit" I set up today in the hoophouse, the other 3 are back out to the open air, wire coop.

    We don't get the results of the culture back until Monday.
     
  7. junglebird

    junglebird Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 29, 2010
    Southern Oregon
    Got the throat culture back. They found a "not significant" amount of staph and a higher then normal (but not off the charts) count of pasteurella. When the Vet finally called me to give me the culture results, I was already angry at him for failing to return my call with questions about Baytril, and for failing to tell me about the risks of Baytril before he prescribed it. He apologized, saying he should have. He has prescribed trimethoprim sulfa for the pasteurella. I asked him if there are any risks I need to be aware of, he said no.

    Now I'm angry with him again, when I started googling pasteurella, I see it attached to the words "cholera" and "chronic." However, when I asked the Vet if I could hold off on the sulfa treatment to see whether they birds could shake it off on their own he said "maybe." He didn't make it sound like a dire diagnosis. I am reading that there are different strains of pasteurella, so perhaps ours is not so dangerous? Why couldn't he just have given me more complete information to begin with?!

    Anyone have information about pasteurella strains, treatments, prognosis? I would really appreciate some helpful information!
     
  8. teddiliza

    teddiliza Chillin' With My Peeps

    Did he check for mycoplasma? (Chronic Respiratory Disease)

    Also, it could just be the weather changes or if it has been more damp and you need to clean your coop. If you smell ammonia, that would do it too. The aggressiveness could just be coming of age. Sneezing and occasional panting with clear drainage is no big deal, but if you see yellow crusted nostrils and raspy gurgly breathing & coughing, you're in trouble! If they are eating and drinking fine, don't worry too much.
     
  9. teddiliza

    teddiliza Chillin' With My Peeps

    Also, if you haven't wormed them you might try it. There are some tracheal worms that can cause them problems. Do a search on 'ivermectin' here on byc.
     

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