Treating Botulism? **UPDATED*RIP Spike

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by artsyrobin, Jun 29, 2009.

  1. artsyrobin

    artsyrobin Artful Wings

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    What is the best way to treat a chick with botulism, my 2 month old silkie has all the symtoms, it started saturday, he is paralyzed to the neck, and i have beepn giving him vitamins, e, yogurt and egg, he was barely eating until tonite, then he began eating yogurt and egg- i also started him in baycox antibiotic, not sure if it is helping or not- ideas and suggestions?
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 17, 2009
  2. threehorses

    threehorses Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The only true treatment is an antitoxin which must be gotten from the vet. Bacitracin and streptomycin have been used with varying results. Otherwise, the treatments (flushes) are started as the onset of symptoms and are VERY harsh as they're designed to flush the contents of the stomach out to rid the body of the bacteria. Those include epsom salt treatment of the crop (immediately after exposure) or molasses flushes. Both can shock a bird like this into death. I'd think at this point it might be too late for that type of flush. But selenium treatment is indicated for it. You can get that from the grocery store. Also apparently a solution of one part potassium permanganate to 3000 parts water can be useful. Treatment thereafter is supportive - nutrition, hydration.

    Does the bird have green diarrhea?

    I really never ever recommend the flushes unless the bird is definitely going to die and it's a last ditch effort. Those deaths are usually sudden. Has your bird regained any function below the neck? The eating is a good sign though odd.

    The paralysis is classified as "flaccid" meaning limp. Are his wings limp and floppy? The disease is nicknamed "limberneck" because when it effects the neck, the head droops uncontrollably. Then the paralysis in the body would cause inability to breath and cardiac arrest. Apparently sometimes birds do survive it. Let's hope that yours is one.

    I'd more strongly suspect Marek's, or another issue such as chemical toxins. But really it still can't be ruled out without a test. Although apparently with Botulism, other than the floppiness, their feathers can easily be pulled out of their follicles. Does this apply to your bird?

    Otherwise, Mareks and toxins are the other situations to rule out.

    Did your bird have access to wet feed? Maggots? Decaying vegetation? Any carcass? Any stagnant water? Any weed killers or pesticides used in your place or at a neighbors that maybe washed into your place via rain? Compost piles?

    Baycox is actually not an antibiotic at all. It's an anti-protazoa medicine - for cocci, etc. It's not applicable most likely.

    There are other illnesses or conditions associated with paralysis - like encephalitis for example. That requires supportive treatment and anti-inflammatories, not really any 'cure' for it. There's also Newcastle's, but that's usually associated with respiratory symptoms that this guy isn't displaying.

    So at this point, get him to eat. Try vitamins like Enfamil non-iron formula (you can get it at CVS apparently) 3 drops in the beak. Continue the yogurt and egg especially since he likes it. You can use babyfood applesauce in small amounts to encourage his digestive system to clean out. 1/2 a teaspoon. If he'll eat it. If his crop isn't clearly easily.

    Is he drinking as well? The vitamin E is good - continue that. Obviously this is neurological and E is the vitamin for that for sure. That will be required long term if he survives.

    Otherwise, just be as kind to him as you've been. You're so sweet. And at least if you lose him you know you've tried your best. The fact that he's still a live is a testament to your care for him in the last few days.

    Could you please let me know how he does? Via email or here or whatever. If I don't reply on the same day or so, will you email me? Sometimes my "subscription" to the post gets dropped and I really want to follow up with you on this, please.

    I'll send prayers and well wishes in the mean time.
     
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  3. dlhunicorn

    dlhunicorn Human Encyclopedia

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  4. artsyrobin

    artsyrobin Artful Wings

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    Morning everyone, little Spike is hanging in there, much more alert, his eyes are open and he was willing to eat on his own, he still only has head movement and a little of his neck, but that is better than yesterday- i am continuing with the vitamins, the E etc. should i be giving him ACV in his water also? i was ready to admit defeat yesterday as he got worse and worse, glad i held off of culling- hate the thought of that

    i am clueless as to the cause,he lives with his hatchmate and a duccle pullet, not sure if an injury could have happened, but i won't rule anything out.
     
  5. dlhunicorn

    dlhunicorn Human Encyclopedia

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    everyone who has silkies should become acquainted with the article I indicated above ... read the entire thread as there are photos further down to illustrate why .
     
  6. WalkingWolf

    WalkingWolf Chillin' With My Peeps

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    If it is Botulism the poultry houses treat with iodine in the drinking water. ACV added to water is what I gave a duck that contracted it last year and she survived. Antibiotics are no good against it from what I understand. Basically from what I understand the ACV keeps the gut clean of it until the body can fight it off naturally. It takes time though, I was lucky and my duck was in early stages.
     
  7. dlhunicorn

    dlhunicorn Human Encyclopedia

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  8. artsyrobin

    artsyrobin Artful Wings

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    Just had to let everyone know- spike is much better, have yesterdays pics on my flickr-
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/rgortonart/sets/72157620790027424/

    today he is showing movement in his toes, is persistantly preening, drinking and eating if i put it within reach- still not standing, but i am optimistic- he is getting his vitamins, E, yogurt and crumbles...i think he's on his way back- will get more pictures from today posted soon
     
  9. threehorses

    threehorses Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Awww he's really super cute!

    You know, I just realized something. Have you been checking his underside and the inside of his 'downside' wing to make sure he's not getting sores? There will be less air circulation there and sometimes it happens. Just a thought.

    I'm so very pleased to hear one thing in particular: preening!

    To me, with all the little birds that have come and go in my life, the one major benchmark I've noticed that spoke of true progress is preening. There's no need to preen if you're going to die, and preening - to me - is their signal of "OK let's get going on living now".

    I'm thrilled!

    Keep up the good work. I had a bird who was completely unable to use her legs and wings once. She was very small, a young pullet, and I fashioned a 'sling' for her out of a dust mask and a guineapig cage. The sling held her in a standing position with just enough slack to where she could put weight on her legs to gain strength, but when tired could just rest them and her hocks would be slightly bent. So she didn't have to push up much. She could reach food and water without moving. She had nutritional deficiencies from the first - hatched differently from the others, looked different. It took a long time for her to heal because back then NO one talked about deficiencies. It was "walk or cull". And I hadn't done all the reading up about them. And this was only about 8 years ago.

    So I think with the knowledge you have at hand, hopefully you'll have addressed it sooner and the healing will take less time.

    Please do keep updating us! Now there's a little face to go witht he "silky rooster" designation, so I know I for one will be watching for the updates. [​IMG]

    Cheers!
     
  10. artsyrobin

    artsyrobin Artful Wings

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    Hi everyone, little one is still hanging in there, he can preen his shoulders, odd thing- maybe a clue, his poop is white and green, still pretty loose, he's eating, yogurt, vitamins and crumbles- any idea what is going on with him/her? some movement in the legs, funny- he began peddling his legs- so i thought awesome, he's going to stand...NOT power poop extraordinaire!

    yep, checking under the wings, and trimmed around his bum, so that doesn't get matted. the two of them are sleeping on the couch next to me, thought maybe contact with his sis would help some?

    I fashioned a 'sling' for her out of a dust mask and a guineapig cage.

    i was wondering if that might help - as it is i prop him up so he is upright and then do hold him in a standing position periodically, which he seems to appreciate. i came real close saturday to culling him, but just couldn't do it- keep calling spike a 'him' but not sure really [​IMG]
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 2, 2009

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