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Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by chickmomma18, Nov 25, 2014.
I see a very swollen right ear that could be an ear infection or a respiratory disease. Is the head swollen? Does the chicken have any rattles, gurgles, nasal or eye drainage? Anyone else have a respiratory disease or symptoms?
Yes. Her head is swollen.
Believe it or not there is a disease called swollen head syndrome, which affects broiler chickens and turkeys more often. Infectious coryza can cause swelling of the head also. Does her ear seem tender to the touch? Does she have any visible injuries, peck wounds, or any of the respiratory symptoms I listed above? Can you check her ear to see if there is gunk inside that needs to be cleaned out? Here is a some info about SHS:
Swollen Head Syndrome
Synonyms: Facial cellulitis, thick head, Dikkop, SHS
Species affected: Chickens and turkeys are the known natural hosts. Experimentally, guinea fowl and pheasants are susceptible but pigeons, ducks, and geese are resistant to the infection. SHS does not presently occur in the United States, but is present in most countries of the world.
Clinical signs: In chicks and poults, there is initial sneezing, followed by reddening and swelling of the tear ducts and eye tissue. Facial swelling will extend over the head and down the jaw and wattles. Adult chickens have mild respiratory disease followed by a few birds having swollen heads. Other signs include disorientation, twisting of the neck, and a significant drop in egg production (see Table 1).
Transmission: The infection spreads by direct contact with infected birds or indirectly by exposure to infectious material.
Treatment: There is no proven medication for swollen head syndrome. The disease is caused by a virus classified as a pneumovirus. A disease closely mimicking SHS is caused by a mixed infection of respiratory viruses and specific bacteria. Antibiotic therapy may be helpful against the bacterial component.
Prevention: A commercial vaccine is available. Swollen head syndrome is considered an exotic disease and a live vaccine is not approved for use in the United States.
She has no otger symptoms. I have a baby monitor on & there is no sneezing or odd sounds. I think tomorrow am I should take her to the emergency room to be sure. If it is this, does this mean my other 17 birds are in danger?
Swollen head syndrome is pretty rare in this country (US,) but there have been some outbreaks of it in the past in Minnesota I believe. I would be more concerned now abvout her ear swelling and possible infection that maybe is causing her head to be swollen. What does the other ear look like. You can clean out the ear with some peroxide and QTips, to see if there is any gunk or signs of mites. Neosporin is good to put in the ear for infection. Please give us an update for what you find out with the vet. It's a good way to learn about different illnesses, especially unusual things. I hope it is just something as simple as an ear infection which would respond to some antibiotics perhaps.
I will check her again 1st thing in the morning & check her ear and keep you updated.
Update: took her to the vet yesterday.
She is no inside and on medication for a swollen head and ear. Today the swollen has already gone down. She's being treated for possible pasturela multoida