What do you think about medicated Chick crumbles?

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by Waight, Mar 24, 2012.

  1. Waight

    Waight Out Of The Brooder

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    It's been recommended to me to change my current food to the medicated food and I was wondering if anyone has ever used it and what they thought of it.
     
  2. silkie_sue

    silkie_sue Chillin' With My Peeps

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    hi there [​IMG] Iowa here

    I think Medicated chick feed is great as long as you are not trying to be all organic. I feed all my chicks Med Feed till they are at least 2 months old and have never had a case of Cocci. I did have one shipment of chicks that arrived with Cocci (bought from a individual). Those I had to treat and then they went on Med feed and all are doing fine now. The Medicated feed helps them build up a resistance to Cocci. Hope this helps neighbor
     
  3. Waight

    Waight Out Of The Brooder

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    It sure does! Thank you!
     
  4. snoggle

    snoggle Chillin' With My Peeps

    From what I've read, it is probably over-kill for the average backyard flock. It may do more harm than good. Backyard chickens don't have the same crowded living conditions and stresses that commercial flocks do, so they are far less likely to get infections of any kind. Plus, you are killing off the good bacteria. Most bacteria are not harmful and the chicks, like humans, need their good bacteria. Think about what happens when humans take antibiotics and they end up with diarrhea (because the normal gut bacteria are killed off) or yeast infections (because the normal vaginal bacteria get killed off, letting the normal yeast go crazy).

    Quote: And, my big thing is, that you're increasing the risk of antibiotic resistant bacteria. This is a HUGE problem in healthcare and why we should NEVER be prescribing antibiotics for things like colds (viruses that antibiotics don't kill anyway). Yeah, the antibiotics might prevent some possible secondary infection (like pneumonia), but if that infection would only show up 1% of the time, the risks do not outweigh the benefits. Instead, when the pneumonia actually shows up, you're more likely to have the antibiotic not work, since it has been given in the past when it wasn't needed, allowing the bacteria that are resistant to flourish, when the weaker bacteria are killed off. So the above quote is wrong - giving medicated feed DOES NOT allow the chickens to build up a resistance to cocci, it only allows the cocci to build up resistance to the antibiotics.

    If they have an actual bacterial infection, like cocci, absolutely treat it with antibiotics (making sure it is one that will cover that strain of bacteria), but do not give it to them to "prevent" infections. The best prevention is healthy living conditions, clean water, and a healthy varied diet. Also, always quarantine new flock members.

    Sorry, I had to get up on my soap box there. [​IMG] I will admit, that I am new to chicken ownership, but the overuse of antibiotics drives me nuts in my work life. I'm a family nurse practitioner and before that I taught Biology and ran the Biology labs at a large college, including the Microbiology labs. So this is a huge pet peeve of mine....
     
    Last edited: Mar 24, 2012
  5. ClareScifi

    ClareScifi Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I am one who doesn't deal well with the loss of pets, and my friend who gave me my chicks brought a bag of medicated feed for them, so I used it. When I raised my own chicks, I used it again. So far, so good. They seem to have done fine on it. I use it for only 8 weeks, then switch to Grower food until they are 20 weeks old (nonmedicated-- medicated is unnecessary at the older age), and then to All Flock or Flock Raiser for everyone. The hens have a bowl of laying mash available apart from the All Flock/Flock Raiser, where the rooster can't get to it. Layer has too much calcium in it for adult male chickens. The hens, however, can eat the All Flock/All Raiser just fine, with free-choice oystershell available to them on the side, for extra calcium. I have never seen my rooster try to eat the oystershell, even though it is accessible to him, so that's good. He doesn't need the extra calcium.

    I do worry some about the lehorn hens who need lots of calcium to lay their eggs, so I try to make sure they get the layer mash every day. The Barred Rock and Sebright Bantam don't seem to need the layer as much.

    Grower would be okay for the Rooster, too, but he seems to like the All Flock fine. I bought it in crumble form and am considering to switching to mash next time around. He likes mash best and is a Piggy, so I think he would eat less of the layer. I worry about him developing a pendulous crop or getting fatty liver disease from eating too much.
     
  6. Joe.G

    Joe.G Chillin' With My Peeps

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    How do you keep the Rooster from not eatting the layer?
     
  7. galanie

    galanie Treat Dispenser No More

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    The amprolium in medicated starter isn't an antibiotic in the normal sense of the word. It doesn't kill off all the bad bugs, it just inhibits cocci microorganisms enough for the babies to build up a natural resistance without getting sick first. I see no harm at all in giving it and plenty of benefit. Sure they aren't in the crowded conditions they'd be in for a commercial operation. Or are they? I've seen some pretty crowded brooders of backyard chicken folks.
     
  8. Back2Roots

    Back2Roots Chillin' With My Peeps

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    x2.
    I agree with this post: If I`m not sick, I don`t take antibiotics, so I will not be giving antibiotics to my chickens either, because they are not preventatives; they are usually taken to treat an existing infection. I believe that antibiotics weaken and compromise immune systems, so giving them foods that help to boost their immune system makes more sense to me than giving them antibiotics.
    Being very new to raising chickens (don`t even have any yet - lol!), I am obviously far from being an expert, and I don`t know how old chickens need to be before you can start augmenting their feed with foods that are calcium, vitamin and antioxidant-rich (greens such as Kale or chard). I think that store-bought feed probably has a good balance of what they need nutritionally in order to grow up healthy. From everything that I`ve read so far on this site, and from other sources about chicken health and well-being, I think that as long as their environment is as clean, dry and draft-free as possible, that goes a long way to keeping them happy and healthy. [​IMG]
     
  9. Back2Roots

    Back2Roots Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks for sharing - I learned something new today ... good to know! [​IMG]
     
  10. galanie

    galanie Treat Dispenser No More

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    Very true. There are tons of people that don't give medicated starter and don't need it. But they take other measures, starting with what you said. There is a lot of value also in giving yogurt, buttermilk, Kefir, or clabbered milk in preventing cocci. Either way is good as far as I'm concerned. In my last post, I just wanted to try to clear up what the "medication" in medicated food is. It's not a drug like you'd think of such as antibiotic. It won't cause super germs to develop or anything. It just inhibits a protien or something (forget now exactly which but you can google it and find out) of the cocci itself to slow them down.
     

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