Separate names with a comma.
Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by izziebean, Nov 18, 2015.
X2 for sick birds.
I opened the vent in the garage and it's now being heated. There is also a heat lamp nearby. Happy, the cochin bantam, is making improvements. Merebear is not. She is no longer eating or drinking. She will pop her head up when asked, but then quickly falls back asleep. I can't decide if she is just tired and needs to sleep or this is the end and she is in pain. She doesn't look like she is in pain, but without water she has to be dehydrated and dying. She's not struggling the breathe. There is no crust in or around her eyes. She is just sleepy and disoriented. She just wants to lay in a little plastic box I use as a nesting box.
**UPDATE** So.. I got Merebear out of her little coop and brought her upstairs into the house. I got the big syringe and put 40cc of warm water in it. I opened her beak and gave her a little bit of water on the right hand side until all was gone. It took about 15 minutes. I watched her do her little mouth thing that she does when she drinks so I *think* the water went to the right place. I then gave her another shot of Tylan 50. While I was putting away the supplies, she flipped herself over and gave me THAT BAD LOOK. Awww I'm a bad bad mom. She still has some spunk left. I called the humane society and they will put her down when I am ready. I'm going to try to push more water in an hour or so.. then try some pedialyte later (is that better than electrolytes?). She put her head in the food bowl so I think she wanted to eat but she did not eat anything while I was watching.
Don King, my wc blue polish, is hunched over now. Tang it.
Happy drank a ton of water a bit ago but is now standing in the corner hunched over too. She is not struggling to breathe though. I need to give her another shot but she gets so sleepy afterwards. When I said 'Happy?', she immediately bent over and started looking for something to eat. I think she is trying to hide it now.
**QUESTION** I've been reading about using a catheter and inserting it into her crop to put the food or water directly inside the chicken. I don't know if I can do this. I do know where the crop is thanks to bunny's crop being overfilled this week. I thought it was impacted but it was empty just now so she's okay. Has anyone ever done this?
So... Happy continues to improve, but still is struggling a bit. Meredith is hanging on. I was able to give her some more water this evening twice.. both times with electrolytes. She perks up about halfway through giving fluids. I put a ton of scratch feed in my hand and she went crazy for it. So I made some mash of her normal food plus that and she ate some. Fell back asleep. She was so out of it when I woke her for the next fluids. Gave her more fluids. When I set her in own little coop, she went straight for the food. So I left her eating. The rooster, Don King, was so out of it earlier. Since the roosters all reside alone together, there really hasn't been much fighting. Don has always been top roo though and tonight his brother was pulling on his top feathers (they are both polish). I scolded Oliver and he is leaving him alone. I found Don eating and I feel a bit of something digesting in his crop so I think there is still hope.
Now a couple of the other hens are looking a bit frazzled. I think whatever this is is just making its way through the flock. Happy was the worst off when I started antibiotics and she is making a recovery so maybe there is hope that they can fight off whatever this is. She drinks a lot of water though.. which I think has been helping a lot.
I do tons of tubing, so I can teach you. Sent you a PM with my number, so call me.
Izzy, along with your tylan treatment, why don't you try some multi-vitamins in their water. The B vitamins would help perk them up, but I would look for a supplement for water with a wide range of all the vitamins. I'd give them some extra C also, either in fruit, like grape or tomato, or a broken up C pill and pop a piece in the back of the beak daily for a few days. For the respiratory breathing problems look for something called VetRX at Tractor Supply. It's sort of like a chicken Vicks vapor rub is the way I think of it. Warm it up a bit and follow the directions. Another thing you can try that might help with their mucus problems is organic apple cider vinegar. Added to the water I have read it helps to cut through the mucus in their throats. I think it is a tablespoon per gallon water. Make sure you use the one with the "mother" though. And warming up the coop is always a good idea when dealing with sick birds, just like sick people, don't want all their energy being spent on keeping warm.
Was your garage damp or moldy? Fungus or mold spores are everywhere and more prevalent in some areas like damp places. Fungal infections can cause the same type symptoms that viral or bacterial can and are much harder to treat if they can be treated at all. Not saying that is what is happening but something you should be aware of, as all chicken owners should. Our birds are subjected to old feed, sometimes moldy, moldy hay and are constantly digging around in the dirt where spores are. Most chicken immune systems can handle it, but if overwhelmed for some reason, or exposed to certain molds, cannot. In my area, this summer was particularly bad. Hot and humid, I noticed fungus popping up everywhere in the yard and the spilled feed would mold in a matter of days in the weather. It was awful.
You may want to read up at this site when you have time. It has much helpful information on medications and a link on the side on fungal infections. If your chickens do not improve, you may very well be dealing with a fungal infection. Oxine is helpful in the water as a preventative, but for treatment I think I might opt for the oil of oregano. It is supposed to be a potent anti fungal, anti viral, anti bacterial remedy (lady at the health store was very up on it), but I think it is a long term treatment option. It is very bitter and the oil would have to be diluted quite a bit with their water in order for them to drink it. The following site also suggest administering it by steam inhalation or nebulization. Anyway here is the link:
Is your vet going to do cultures on your dead bird to find the cause? That would be very helpful seeing as how so many are becoming ill. Fungal infections generally are not contagious, so all your birds would have had to be exposed heavily for it to be that (that's just my thinking), so I am thinking viral or bacterial, but please let us know what you find.
Going back to the vitamin/mineral addition, I did find where a Vit A deficiency can cause respiratory illness and drowsiness, etc. I would look for an addition to their water/diet along with what you are doing.
If they don't respond to the Tylan, it's probably a virus or gram negative bacteria. Tylan is not vey good at treating anything other than mycoplasma.
Thank you both for your kind responses. This has definitely been a long month and a tough journey. All of the birds are still alive. I loved the information on the fungal problems that could arise. I have three areas for the chickens to free range and I kind of rotate which place they have for the day (since the roosters have to be separate and then I have 6 that are only 8 weeks old). One of the areas, I use one of those hanging feeders but it's sitting on the ground. They love to flick on the ground and then eat it. I didn't really see that as a problem although I had been worried about it attracting other animals in the night. This time of the year, the sun moves in such a way that that area doesn't get a lot of sun and I had noticed it staying 'damp' longer than normal if there had been any precipitation. I will keep an eye of that and make sure that that isn't a problem in the future. I may move that area to another place entirely so that they can have access to more grass. They've eaten all of the grass away this summer. OOooo how my pretty green lawn is no more. HA!
I am still giving Meredith fluids every 4 hours. She actually bawked out loud at me earlier in protest so she's feeling better. I've caught her several times today eating on her own and she a little bit of food in her crop so I think she is on the mend. Happy seems good. She's alert, but I can still see her waddles moving in a bit when she breathes. I think her sinuses move too. It's so odd to watch. She is eating. Her crop is soft, but has stuff in it. I'm thinking of trying that VetRX to see if we can open up the sinuses because other than that.. she looks and acts pretty good. She's doing a funny thing with her neck though.. she turns it around and rests her head on her back to sleep. Is that normal?
Don King is better today, but his brother Oliver is now the next victim of this plague. His tail was down earlier.. and he was hanging his head. Same symptom that Don had last night. I dipped his beak in water a few times and snot ran out of his nose. I wiped that off and put him back in the coop. A few minutes later he had walked over to eat. The roosters are a bit stronger than my hens so I'm not as concerned about him. I may eat my words in the morning. I do think the VetRX would help him.
The babies I took outside today and let them run in the sun. It was 55 degrees and sunny. They only got a couple of hours since the ground still felt a bit cool.. but gosh they loved running around like little nuts.
I didn't give any shots today. Three days was what most people recommended so I'm hoping that if worked. If some start to go downhill again tomorrow, I may extend it a few more days. I stopped the LS-50 in their water too. I'm almost out and I don't think it was helping much anyways. I'm kind of leaning toward this being a cold, flu, pneumonia type of thing. Since Meredith seemed to respond so well to the electrolytes, I'm adding that to all their water. I'm going to ask the vet supply store tomorrow if they have some sort of vitamin packet to add to water. I think they could benefit from that too.
I did try giving yogurt to them last night but my flock is not having any of that. The looks on their faces said a lot. hehehehe
I hope the autopsy report comes back this week. If they start getting sick again, I may take one in for a blood test just to see if that shows up anything.
Great. Let us know what they find. In the mean time treat them like you would a child with a cold. Vstrx, extra C and D in the diet, warmth and rest. Whatever they have is spreading and the sick ones need their own plates and bed so to speak.
The preliminary report is back and it is Infectious Bronchitis Virus. Paris must have had it for a couple of days before I picked up on it. If I had known how to feed her that night.. at least have kept fluids in her, I do feel she would still be alive. It's so painful to know I could have saved her.
The flock is still struggling. I had bought 2 new birds and they had been shipped to me via USPS less than 10 days before Paris died. I do not know if the owner knew or if this was something that was picked up in shipping. I am a bit worried because the lady that I bought the birds from is about to ship out some more birds because she is getting out of the business. I would estimate at least 30 birds are going to different locations. I do not know whether to contact her or just leave it be. I would hate for someone else to have to go through this too.
With this being a virus, the antibiotics are unlikely to help unless there is a secondary infection. I have heated up the coop area. Meredith returned to the others today for a bit. She is now flying out of the temporary coop so she is healing. If I don't push fluids into her, though, her comb and waddles get very pale. She is eating some food on her own.
Don King is back to being lethargic.. as well as his brother Oliver. I do not have another coop to move them to and my other two silkie roosters are in the same cage with them. Since this is highly contagious, they have already been infected. I'm switching out their water 3 times a day. I bought the VetRX and I'm going to swab that all over the rooster and the girls showing symptoms. I also bought a vitamin supplement pack that also has electrolytes in it. I'll be adding that to their water too.
The vet said that if this were any flock other than a backyard flock he would just recommend culling and starting over in the spring. Since chickens are not his primary animals, he has turned over my case to another lady at the hospital. I will be talking with her tomorrow.
So this is a very highly contagious cold/virus. I will treat them like I would want to be treated when I'm down and out with a cold. If they stop drinking, then I'll push fluids like I did with Meredith.
I'll keep you updated. Apparently this can infect the kidneys and if that happens then death is almost certain. The good news is that most of the time the flock will recover but it will take a month or two. Maybe by the spring we can have it all cleared up and the hens will be laying again. I will have to disinfect everything because any new birds could get the virus very easy. I'm kind of ocd against germs so this will be up my alley after Christmas. We just have to make it through until then. I'll keep updating. I have some video I'd like to post in case others want to learn from this experience. I'll show that later.
Thanks for following along!