very worried - sneezing hen, now flock is sneezing


12 Years
May 23, 2007
A few days ago I noticed a hen sneezing in one of my flocks.

Everyone seemed so healthy otherwise, I thought it might be just something caught in her beak. In fact, I didn't notice her sneezing again for a couple of days.

Then, I heard her sneezing again, often. I have separated her and put VetRx in her water, on her nostrils, and in her beak.

The rest of her flock got VetRx in their water, too.

But this evening, I noticed several sneezes in that flock.

Otherwise, everyone looks very healthy- in fact, I was just noticing how nice this flock looked before the sneezing started. The are all molting but have been coming through molt nicely.

Now I'm very worried something contagious might be starting on my farm that will harm or wipe out my flocks. Is there any way to tell what is affecting them at this point? Any way to treat?

More info that might or might not be relevant - I just did a major coop cleaning about a week ago, complete with thorough wash down of the inside. The hen that started sneezing first was purchased early this summer from a breeder as an adult. She was quarantined for about 6 weeks before I integrated her with the flock and this is the first health trouble I've had from her.


12 Years
Jan 23, 2008
now youve got me wondering I had one sneezing 2 days ago. By the way, If youve never heard a chicken sneeze its a hilarious sound.


12 Years
Dec 21, 2007
Southeast USA
watch for any swelling or drainage from the eyes.
mucus from beak.
any wheezing sounds..
change in droppings..
change in appetite.
acting ill..(hunched and fluffed, inactive, no appetite)

could be pollens or dusts in the air..or a reaction to whatever cleaner you used..
did you air the coop out well after cleaning?
what cleaner did you use?
what bedding are you using?


12 Years
May 23, 2007

did you air the coop out well after cleaning?

I actually dragged three large fans out to the coop and ran them to dry it out inside before I put new bedding in...

what cleaner did you use?

I used
, rinsed well, then sprayed with Poultry Protector (natural enzymatic stuff that is supposed to control mites etc.)

what bedding are you using?

Pine shavings. The same kind we use for our horses.

This morning's update - the hen who originally started sneezing now has a slight rattling in her chest. She is feisty and very upset and being separated from the flock.

I was in with the flock she came from for a while and I thought I heard a few sneezes in quick succession, but that was only once, and then none.

I am wondering if it's possible that dust from feed could contribute. I've been mixing some chick starter in with their feed because there is a broody mother with chicks in the coop (she likes to pull some out and drop it on the floor for her chicks). They have been sticking their beaks into this powder from a hanging feeder. I wondered if the dust could be effecting them so I pulled out the powdery feed and replaced it with pellets.

Also, I contacted the breeder I got the hen who originally started sneezing from to find out what she might have been vaccinated for. He said she was vaccinated for ILT and possibly Newcastle-Bronchitis.​

UP Chicken Lover

11 Years
Sep 27, 2008
Western UP of MI
Hi...I live in the UP and we are already starting our cold rainy season - I heard one of my chickens sneeze twice tonight... is this normal or should I do something? New chicken owner here... so need help...
I have 5 black sex links. Their coop is nice and dry - insulated and has a vapor barrier. I just cleaned yesterday and put new bedding down... I use pine shavings... this is the same bedding they had when I first got them a month ago...

Chicky Joy

11 Years
Jun 22, 2008
I had some sneezing in my adult flock a while back. I had some sparse sneezing in most of the hens and one hen in particular that sneezed all the time and was wheezing.

Knock on wood...things seem fine now. I don't notice any wheezing and only random sneezing...mostly from the dust when they are eating.

I didn't give mine any meds but I did wonder if they'd gone through a round of Infectious Bronchitis. I didn't have any other signs of illness, and no noticable drop in egg production.


11 Years
Feb 24, 2008
Carrollton, GA
I was just reading a thread that suggested VetRX contains ingredients chickens are sensitive to-- alcohol and camphor. Could be it was one casual sneeze until the VetRX. My chickens sneeze any time they get something in their beaks-- yogurt, water, etc. They also sneeze when their bedding is a little south of sweet smelling. Unless it's persistent or accompanied by other symptoms, I let it ride.


Intentional Solitude
Premium Feather Member
14 Years
Feb 3, 2007
Blue Ridge Mtns. of North Georgia
And dont use Terramycin. It really doesn't work well, too mild. If they really had something respiratory and you wanted to treat it, Tylan works much better. Sneezing alone, I never worry about; as stated, there are so many reasons to sneeze.

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