We just lost our sweet BR to roundworms - info on symptoms

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by JennsPeeps, Mar 24, 2009.

  1. JennsPeeps

    JennsPeeps Rhymes with 'henn'

    Jun 14, 2008
    South Puget Sound
    To answer questions about Dumpling's symptoms & treatment, I'm updating this 1st post to provide that info. Additions in italics.

    Tribute to Dumpling here: https://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?pid=1832725#p1832725

    Noticed these symptoms & that they seemed quite extreme:
    extreme lethargy
    droopy tail
    lack of enthusiasm for food
    watery droppings (had been so for a long time)
    previous infection by & treatment for cocci in Jan (blood in droppings)
    significant weight loss in past week
    quit laying eggs on 3/15

    Dumpling jumped on my lap & just wanted to be held. This was unusual.

    I posted on that I had realized my BR, Dumpling, was really lethargic & seemed quite sick. Thanks to PouletdeCajun, I discovered that she had roundworms.

    upon examination found white worms in fecal matter

    We started treatment with Wazine for the entire flock (all 4 birds). Dumpling only came when called rather than greet me when I walked outside. She was able to get on the roost in their coop.

    additional symptoms: weakness, unwillingness to come when called

    TUESDAY (today)
    DBF picked me up from work and said that Dumpling was really, really sick. He wanted to get home so that we could get her in the house asap (you know it's bad when the man wants to bring a notoriously poopy chicken inside). When we got home, she was lying on the ground in the yard, too weak to move. Her comb is grey-ish red.

    We brought her inside the house and put her in a box. She seems to be in & out of consciousness. When she's awake, we're able to get some mash of yogurt & chick feed into her. She's also taken a bit of boiled egg. I've set the timer for 45-min intervals to try to get her to eat and drink, allowing her to rest in between periods. She seems eager to eat when she's aware of the food. It's a challenge to wake her.

    Gave her Poly-Vi-Sol liquid (about $11/bottle) and Pedialyte at 45-60 minute intervals. She stopped accepting fluids around 4:30a and died around 6:00a in my arms. I knew she was on her way and so I made a point of holding her until she died so that she could be in the comfort of her flock mistress.

    In researching roundworms I found lots of info about them. They're present in earthworms and earwigs, as well as several other ground-dwelling insects. Those 2 stuck in my mind because I'vve got both in my yard. These worms can be transferred to other chickens, pets, and humans. Chickens with a heavy load of roundworms are more susceptible to cocci, which I didn't know when I treated her for cocci in Jan. Had I known, I would have treated her for worms at the same time.

    There's lots of info about worming out there but not much about how long to dose. I chose Wazine 17 (piperazine) because it was available quickly at the feed store. Cost was about $5-6. Give in water for 24 hours (withhold water overnight). Withdrawal periods vary depending upon the resource you read - anywhere from "3 eggs" to 17 days.

    Other treatments are available and can range from general wormers (any worm) to specific types, and from topical to oral administration.

    Lesson learned: worm your chickens and know the symptoms, expecially since cocci & worms often go together. I lost a very good chicken today because of this hard-learned lesson. She was a good girl.
    Last edited: Mar 25, 2009
  2. redhen

    redhen Kiss My Grits... Premium Member

    May 19, 2008
    Western MA
    [​IMG]...ooh darn jenn! i wish i could help you! [​IMG] sorry about your girl... [​IMG]

    i know that keeping birds warm(but not hot) when they are sick is important..it sounds like you are doing all you can do...what about a little bit of honey with her food for a sugar boost? so sorry! [​IMG]
  3. Renee

    Renee Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 7, 2008
    Don't give up on her yet!

    Audrey Hepburn was laying on her side, could not lift her head, we could not get her to eat...
    She recovered!

    Just make sure she's hydrated. We used a syringe with a tube at the end and fed her water/pedialyte in a 50 50 solution.

    You may want to get vitamins too, since worms cause nutritional deficiencies. We used Poly-Vi-Sol liquid baby vitamins and put a drop on her beak three times a day for a few days.
  4. JennsPeeps

    JennsPeeps Rhymes with 'henn'

    Jun 14, 2008
    South Puget Sound

    Thanks for this advice! I'll get some pedialyte right away.
  5. JennsPeeps

    JennsPeeps Rhymes with 'henn'

    Jun 14, 2008
    South Puget Sound

    She's still with us. I've been giving her pedialyte hourly since getting it around 9:30p. I've also given her 2 doses so far of the liquid vitamins.

    And yes, it's 4:30a and I've been nursing this poor, sick chicken all night.

    Her comb coloring has gotten better - more red than grey now. She's not responding when we talk to her, and barely when we touch her. But she is taking the liquids via syringe.

    No poop since we brought her in last night at 6:30p. DBF saw her poop right before we did so. She hasn't eaten since about 9.

    If she makes it, it'll be a miracle of diligent, constant, and careful nursing.

    Thanks for the pedialyte suggestion. We haven't given up on her, and won't until she's gone.
  6. JennsPeeps

    JennsPeeps Rhymes with 'henn'

    Jun 14, 2008
    South Puget Sound

    At about 6:00 a.m. our sweet Dumpling breathed her last breaths. DBF had just gotten up from bed to see how she was doing. I think she was waiting for him.

    We're both heart broken.
  7. SLM

    SLM Out Of The Brooder

    Mar 22, 2009
    Northern Ontario
    I'm so sorry for your loss.

    I do have a few questions, are the roundworms the same as dogs can get?

    Can the birds pass them to the dogs/cats or vice/versa?
  8. sonew123

    sonew123 Poultry Snuggie

    Mar 16, 2009
    onchiota NY
    I'm sorry..You were making me tear up:hit-I said a prayer for you

    Someone please answer the roundworn question about spreading it to dogs and cats or vice-versa? I have 1 dog and 1 puppy and 2 cats-help?
  9. newchickenfamily

    newchickenfamily Chillin' With My Peeps

    [​IMG] Sorry JennsPeeps... [​IMG] I would also like to thank you for helping out the newer chickens owners such as myself. Because of the info posted, other chickens may be saved.
  10. bulldog-girl

    bulldog-girl Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 16, 2008
    Estacada, OR
    My chickies free range as well. I am now worried about roundworms as I have never treated them for it. Is it a good idea even if you have no symtoms? Also, mine are laying pretty well. Will I have to throw out the eggs if they get treated? If so how long?

    So sorry to hear of your loss. [​IMG] She was well loved for sure.

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