Speckled Sussex Struggling to breath

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Mmstone18, Sep 23, 2014.

  1. Mmstone18

    Mmstone18 New Egg

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    Sep 23, 2014
    She is approx 20 weeks and struggling to breathe. Her comb and face are quite pale. She is still eating and drinking but moves quite slowly and opens her mouth for each breath. Any idea what this is and how to help her? I don't live in an area where vets see chickens. Thx!

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  2. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive True BYC Addict Premium Member

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    Welcome to BYC. Could she have something stuck in her throat, such as a large piece of food? Has she thrown up any? I would look down the throat with a flashlight. Her crop looks very big--does it feel soft or firm? Are you located in a warm tropical area where gapeworm could be a problem? If she is able to eat and drink, it's more likely a respiratory disease such as ILT, mycoplasma (MG,) or coryza. Have you seen any clear or bloody mucus come from her beak? If you can't find anything stuck in her throat, I would go get some Tylan50 injectible plus several 22 gauge needles, and 3 cc syringes, and give her 1 ml injected 1/4 inch into the breast muscle daily for 3 days. If you can't do shots, then give it orally for 5 days. Here is a good link to read about the respiratory diseases above: http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/ps044
     
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2014
  3. Mmstone18

    Mmstone18 New Egg

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    Sep 23, 2014
    Thank you for your response. The link was quite helpful. My guess is this is a respiratory infection of some sort.

    Poss Issues:
    I believe "the crop" you see is actually the tail feathers of the hen sunning behind her. There is no discharge of any sort; she has not thrown up that I have seen, and she does not wheeze or make gurgling sounds.

    I live in Georgia, and my only exposure to gape worm is what I have read today. I have no idea if gape worm is a problem in GA. The 16 hens free range all day on several acres.

    Poss sources:
    I have hay in the chicken coop. Perhaps I need to change to wood shavings. The only other offender I can imagine is the 75 lbs of feed that sat out in the rain when someone left the top off which I dumped onto the ground knowing it would rot. The chickens scratched around in it over the past week until it was gone. I'm paying $35 per 50lb bag of organic feed hence my reluctance to throw it in the woods.

    She has wandered off tonight, and we'll see if she survives long enough to start treatment.
     
  4. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive True BYC Addict Premium Member

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    Wet feed can mold pretty fast as anyone has noticed before when feed is spilled onto the ground just before a good rain. Mold can be a real problem in chickens if they get enough of it. Aspergillosis is a disease of mold from the environment or feed. She really looks like she is gasping just from your pictures. Aspergillosis can sometimes be distinguished from other respiratory diseases because it causes silent gasping--instead of wheezing or rattles that are common in most diseases such as MG or coryza. In ILT the gasping would be accompanied by bloody mucus from the mouth and nose. Gapeworm is usually so severe that chickens with it cannot eat or drink, because they are gasping loudly with each breath. Yes, the chicken in the background definitely makes her crop look larger, LOL. Tylan 50 is pretty good stuff, since you can dose the individual bird, rather than treat in the water with something like oxytetracycline or Duramycin, which has to be drunk enough to get the right dose.
     

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