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Tapeworm blockage?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by sooky, Nov 12, 2012.

  1. sooky

    sooky New Egg

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    Much as I'd prefer an organic alternative, I started using avitrol plus bird wormer tablets successfully(?) - on recommendation from breeder- to treat my flock of 7 hens for tapeworm. I now do this every 3-4 months unless I see segments of worms in poo then I do it straight away.
    That happened a couple of weeks ago. My favourite "Sooky" a 6 month old Barnevelder -was lethargic and not eating much then I found little tapeworm segments in her poo so i wormed them according to directions (though only 18 hour fasting prior- as usual actually). She was quiet for the day then seemed better the next day and I felt relieved to see larger tapeworm bits in her poo. 2 days or so more, when I saw an almost inch long bit hanging, dry on her bottom, I (stupidly?) gave it a gentle tug to get it out and broke it off. It's been 2 weeks now since they were wormed, one's gone broody and only 2 are laying again. I'm thinking the worming wasn't so successful and I feel dreadful for Sooky. She's lethargic again, but was still eating grass and would still come for some sorrel leaves but has a full crop.
    She was still getting on a high perch to roost but last night, since she was hesitating, I placed her in the favoured spot on the perch......and... I decided to give her another worming tablet - as I read that sometimes another dose is needed........ I found her still there early this morning. I lifted her down and put her down and she's not balanced or standing up. It's hard to know if this is the natural decline she was heading for or if the tablet has made her worse. Last time she was quiet for the day then better. Her face is still looks quite bright. I put her near water, she drank a bit, a actually put her in front of the whole sorrel clump (an impossible treat before) and she ate a bit but all while sitting down. I've massaged her crop over the past week and it doesn't seem to hurt her. it's full on mostly one side (?) and not shifting. She's lost weight and is very placid though was always very friendly and not anxious when held. As she keeps hanging in there and wandering around eating grass every so often, I'm wondering what I can do to help her shift the blockage without taking her for surgery....I've brought her inside in a cardboard box where she's sitting now.

    Any advice? I'm thinking natural now. I'm not happy or confident to use any more chemical stuff with so many conflicting ideas. I'm wondering about oils or yoghurt or some other gentle sort of thing. Has anyone dealt with a blockage successfully before.

    Sooky and I would much appreciate it.
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Nov 12, 2012
  2. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble

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    Tapeworms are very difficult to get rid of. You did not complete withholding feed from your chickens for 24 hours, nor follow up with several more dosings with avitrol plus. Avitrol Plus contains levimisole and praziquantel. It's the praziquantel that kills tapeworms as you observed larger sections excreted from your infected hen. I recommend that you withhold their feed for 24 hours (dont withhold water,) then dose them with the avitrol plus. Then in 7 days, repeat withholding their feed for 24 hours, then redose them again with avitrol plus.
    Withholding feed from your birds weakens the worms making them more vunerable to the wormer. It might be necessary to worm your birds a third time to rid them of the tapes if you see segments in the poop. Praziquantel is very good at getting rid of tapes.
     
  3. cowcreekgeek

    cowcreekgeek Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Wondering, based upon your treatment, if where you live might have somethin' to do w/ your Sooky's problem ... for example, there are eight internal parasites that you're gonna have to watch out for in Australia (where that medication is commonly used ~'-)

    The 8 Worms in Australia:

    Large Roundworm (Ascaridia galli)
    The Caecal Worm (Heterakis gallinarum)
    Hair Worms (Capillaria spp.)
    Tetrameres (Tetrameres spp.)
    Tapeworms (Raillietina sp., Choanotaenia sp. and Hymenolepis sp.)

    First, it'd be a good idea to make certain which worm(s) she has ...
    >>peck here<< to open a page w/ pictures (in a new window), so you can be more certain.

    Note: They do not suggest using praziquantel.
    Note: They suggest Albendazole.

    However, from two other Vets ...

    Another exceptional document to review: >>peck here<< to open Issue 60 of The Poultry Informed Professional (again, in a new window ~'-)
    Pan down to the part about tapeworms, and you'll see some additional options.

    Note: Again, Albendazole is suggested.

    1. Tramisol[​IMG] (Active ingredient: Levamisole hydrochloride) - Schering Plough.
    Soluble Drench Powder approved in sheep, cattle, and pigs. Withdrawal for cattle is 48 hrs
    pre-slaughter, 72 hrs pre-slaughter for sheep and 72 hrs for pigs. Levamisole will not settle out in
    medication lines. Chicken and turkey dose is 16 mg active levamisole per pound of body weight
    delivered by proportioner over 3-4 hours as a bolus for capillaria and cecal worms in pullets and
    hens. There is no effect on hatch, egg production, feed conversion, or body weight when used at 8
    and 16 mg/pound of body weight dose. However, in the chicken, at 36 mg/pound, water intake is
    reduced, at 288 mg/pound, diarrhea occurs, and at 900 mg/pound, 20% mortality occurred. Egg
    residue clearance time is not known. For roundworms in broilers/pullets, the dose is 8 mg of active
    levamisole per pound of body weight. This is given as a bolus over 3-4 hours. Tissue withdrawal
    times and egg withdrawal times must be extrapolated and extended for safety based on data from
    approved food animal clearances (3,4,5,6,7,8).
    2. Valbazen[​IMG] Oral Suspension (Active ingredient: Albendazole) - Pfizer Animal Health
    Albendazole has been reported to be effective in the treatment of capillaria, ascaridia, heterakis, and
    tape worms in chickens. It has been labeled only for cattle and sheep. There is no poultry data
    available. Settling in drinker lines has not been reported as has been seen with other anthelmentics in
    this class. Cattle require a 7 day withdrawal and sheep require a 7 day withdrawal pre-slaughter.
    There is no available data on tissue or egg clearance time in poultry. There have been no reported
    negative effects on the performance of broilers, pullets and hens. Valbazen is supplied in 500 ml,
    1 liter, and 5 liter bottles of an 11.36% suspension. In chickens, the reported dose is 10 mg/kg of body
    weight (personal communication).
    The cattle dose is 1 liter of Valbazen 11.36% Suspension per 500 lb as an oral bolus via dosing gun
    or dose syringe. (4.54 mg albendazole/lb, 10 mg/kg). Sheep dose is 1 liter of Valbazen 11.36%
    Suspension per 664 animals weighing 50 lbs each (3.4 albendazole/lb, 7.5 mg/kg).
    3. Synanthic[​IMG] Bovine Dewormer Suspension, (Active ingredient, 22.5%: Oxfendazole) -
    Fort Dodge Animal Health
    Synanthic is reported to be effective for capillaria, ascarids, and heterakis. Synanthic does have
    activity against cattle tape worms, however, there is no data whether it will work against poultry
    tapeworms.
    There is 225 mg oxfendazole per ml and it is supplied in a 500 ml bottle for cattle. The
    withdrawal time is 7 days for cattle. There is no tissue-clearance data available for poultry, nor any
    data available on side-effects in poultry. The cattle dose is 2.05 mg/pound of body weight
    (4.5 mg/kg B.W.). There is also a 9.06% suspension available in a 1 liter bottle (90.6 mg/ml of
    oxfendazole). Settling out in water lines without agitation can be a problem (personal
    communication).
    Page 3 of 8
    4. Safe-guard (Active ingredient: 10% suspension, Fenbendazole) - Beef and dairy cattle,
    oral parasiticide - Hoechst-Roussel
    Effective against capillaria, round, and cecal worms in chickens (not approved in chickens). It is
    approved for turkeys as a feed additive, 20% premix type A and B, 16ppm (14.6 gm/ton complete
    feed for 6 consecutive days) for control of adult and larvae round worms and cecal worms.
    The cattle dose is 2.3 mg/pound BW (5 mg/kg BW) as an oral bolus. Beef cattle withdrawal is
    8 days following the last treatment. For dairy cattle, there is no milk withdrawal time. Safe-guard
    is supplied in 1 liter and 1 gallon bottles. There may be a problem with settling out in drinker lines
    without agitation (personal experience).
    5. Ivermectin (1% injectable for cattle)
    Since Ivermectin went off-patent, there are several manufacturers producing it. Ivermectin has been
    used orally via extra-label scripts to treat Northern Fowl Mite and capillaria infestations. Only mites
    that are on the birds are killed. The 1% injectable cattle formulation has been used as follows
    (personal communication):
    • 1 ml of 1% Ivermectin injectible + 1 ml. propylene glycol + 2 gal H2O, proportion at 1
    oz./gal D.W.
    • Administer 2 times, 10-14 days apart. There is a 30 day withdrawal (destroy commercial
    eggs for 30 days post-therapy.)

    One problem, as I see it, is that giving those tablets you've been using may not provide a dosage high enough to rid your birds of the tapeworms, and you're including the additional ingredient at a time that they most probably don't require it. There also some worms w/ a resistance to certain treatments, which usually occurs by having them continuously reinfest flocks receiving ineffective treatments.

    But, what makes the tapeworms most difficult to get rid of is that folks most often don't (or can't) get rid of their eggs. I think most nearly all tapeworms get back in the chicken through an intermediate host (sometimes a most specific list of insects), but this can be controlled by eliminating the droppings completely (I'd raise 'em on wire in an area I could later slash/burn). Once you're in better control of their environment, there's gonna be less worms.

    I know that's a lot of readin' for you, but that's the best defense ... be sure 'n treat your entire flock ~'-)
     
  4. sooky

    sooky New Egg

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    Thankyou. I'll be sure to more strictly adhere to the 24 hr fast in future and repeat doasages but I can't currently look past the fact that Sooky is now unable to stand up at all and has a very hard crop. I've kept chooks for years and not felt quite so helpless and responsible as with this chook I'm so fond of.
     
  5. sooky

    sooky New Egg

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    Thanks. Yes, I think that they are environmentally more vulnerable which is why I've accepted tape wrom treatment as a regular thing I do - I thought sucesssfully until now. My chooks happily roam a large area, feeding on all sorts of lush herbs and they favour drinking out of the reservoirs of bromeliads which alone may harbour parasites and from puddles after the rain. Their enclosure - an old kids cubby house is kept really clean as I rotate their sugar cane sweepings through the compost to grow veges. I'm not prepared to keep chooks locked up cos I wantr them to be happy. Anyway, I can see I need learn the complextiies of tapeworm to continue keeping chooks but for now am traumatised by not being able to assist Sooky back to good health. The food in her crop is not moving and is getting harder yet her breast bone is very prominant. She's as light as afeather and doesn't know what's happening to her. I'm vegetarian and didn't even eat eggs for ages becuase I don't like how we use animals so I'm feeling really crappy about myself for putting achook -any living entity- through this. I value your feedback and will make some serious study of how to mange things properly in the future. I think I'll have a dead or very sad and hungry Sooky in the morning. Goodnight.
    Regrds..
     
  6. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble

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    Try giving Sooky an eyedropperful of olive oil, then massage her crop. There are threads on here about conducting crop surgery if you're up to it. Just type "crop surgery" in the search box.
     
  7. MarineCorpFarmr

    MarineCorpFarmr Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Just don't freak out over "pain". Chickens brains don't process pain like mammals do. Ive watched an old timer castrate his wife's favorite roosters (she didn't want to kill them and he didn't want any more unexpected chicks). No pain med just a quick slit a loop went in to pull each one out, 2 stitches with thread, splashed with antiseptic blue lotion and dropped back on the ground off they went like nothing happened.
     
  8. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble

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  9. MarineCorpFarmr

    MarineCorpFarmr Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hahahahaha.

    My description: that annoying feeling that aint gone away even after they dug most of the shrapnel outta my back. Is what it is.
     
    Last edited: Nov 13, 2012
  10. cowcreekgeek

    cowcreekgeek Chillin' With My Peeps

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    All good owners go through this terrible feeling of responsibility for the bad stuff, without considering how much better they make life for their birds. They are fragile by design, and temporary by nature, and ... if I were one? I'd rather live a short time as you've kept 'em, than so many of the alternatives.

    The quicker you treat her, the better her chances ... the crop impaction may be the direct result of intestinal blockage, or indicative of additional parasitic infestation. Look into what Dawg suggested.

    Immediately, you can add Apple Cider Vinegar to the water for your entire flock at the rate of 4 teaspoons to the gallon (but not in galvanized metal containers). The tannin it contains helps to 'cut through' the mucus and other coatings in the mouth, throat and intestines, which will help w/ uptake of nutrients/vitamins and any medications, and also creates an environment more hostile for intestinal parasites. Further information about this can be found by following the 'Solutions Used for Poultry' link in my signature.

    Also, that's where instructions can be found for making an epsom salt flush, although I don't know whether or not that would be the right thing to do at this point. I've never had to directly deal with such severe infestations, and I'm sorry that you have to ...
     

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