Weak older rooster, neurologic symptoms

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by grace dane, Jan 13, 2015.

  1. grace dane

    grace dane New Egg

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    I have an 8-9 year old Langshan rooster who has been progressively going downhill. He used to weigh about 9.5 #s but has been losing weight. About 3 weeks ago we discovered he had a lice infestation and gave him Ivermectin orally, bathed him and sprayed him with Frontline (Fipronel) spray (just a few squirts). He weighed 8.5 #s then. We treated all the chickens in close contact with him with Ivermectin and Frontline at that time. He is housed in a large dog crate on pine shavings with a buff hen and eats Nutrena layer pellets 16% protein and Meatbird pellets 26% protein. About 3 days ago we noticed he seemed off balance, and would take a few steps forward, then stumble backwards a few steps. He also seemed to lay down more. He has lost another #, but is eating and stools look normal. He sneezed once but does not have any nasal discharge or breathing difficulty.He constantly opens his beak and does a chewing action which is odd. I started him on Ciprofloxin (30mg/kg) orally twice a day but haven't seen any improvement.
    Two days after starting the Cipro he is unable to stand, his legs go out to the side or behind him and his body is emaciated, despite his eating oatmeal, veggies, scrambled egg and a little dry cat food. He still does the chewing thing with his beak too.
    No other chickens are affected. We have not had any new birds brought in, but a lady who raises chickens did come by 10 days ago and was over by the barn where he lives. If anyone has any ideas I would really appreciate it. Thanks.
     
  2. TwoCrows

    TwoCrows Show me the way old friend Staff Member

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    8 or 9 years of age is pretty old for any chicken. At this point his heart could be getting too tired to pump the blood, hence he is weak. I would stop with the antibiotics if you aren't seeing any improvement.

    Give him a quick over all exam to see if you can detect anything. Start with his poop to make sure it looks normal. Poop can help you ID many issues. Feel right between his legs on the outside of his body. The liver is between the legs. See if it is distended and you can feel your other birds for comparison. If it is enlarged, he could have liver disease developing.

    And listen to his heart valves. Put your ear over his back where it meets the neck. If you can hear clicking in there, those are his heart valves. If so, there isn't much you can do. However if you don't hear valves, this doesn't mean he doesn't have an enlarged heart or other heart condition.

    If you can't detect anything being wrong with him other than being weak, he may just be shutting down from old age. Organs can fail at this age.
     
  3. grace dane

    grace dane New Egg

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    Mar 29, 2011
    Thank you for your reply. I do no feel any enlarged organs nor any clicking in his heart, just extremely high heart rate. I am still concerned about his neurological condition. This isn't likely Marek's but maybe some kind of toxin ingestion? I'm grasping at straws now, but he was my daughter's Favorite Show Bird, and she will miss him greatly if he passes. We know he's old, but he has always been a healthy bird.
     
  4. MrsBrooke

    MrsBrooke Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sorry to hear about your rooster. At least he's been a healthy, happy bird to this point. Old age is tough on everyone.

    If he can be patched up, I hope it's successful. <3

    MrsB
     
  5. TwoCrows

    TwoCrows Show me the way old friend Staff Member

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    Lots of things can cause a high heart rate. Just because he is weak doesn't mean it is anything neurological, however anything is possible. I am guessing what ever it is, is due to old age. You have done well to get him to 8 or 9 years of age!

    You might try giving him 1/2 of a baby asprin, broken into 2 pieces and put them into 2 raisins once a day. Baby asprin only, no adult asprin. This will help to thin his blood a bit, not only possibly helping to ease the strain on his heart, but to prevent a stroke. It is possible he has had one already. The apsrin won't hurt him. If you notice an improvement in his heart rate in a few days, continue with the 1/2 baby asprin each day for a while and she how he does.
     
  6. grace dane

    grace dane New Egg

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    "Aboo" is no worse but no better. I am changing to Baytril as it covers more, especially if this is an infection in his spine. Will hope for the best, thanks.
     
  7. grace dane

    grace dane New Egg

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    After a week of hospice care I had my vet look him over and she thought that he had suffered a trauma to his spine, causing his inability to stand. We tried a large dose of steroid injection but it didn't help and we had to put him down. Thanks to all who read and posted their replys.
     
  8. MrsBrooke

    MrsBrooke Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I am very sorry to hear of your loss. I'm glad he's no longer suffering. [​IMG]

    MrsB
     

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