Wheezing chicken - possible obstruction?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by lauralou, Aug 6, 2008.

  1. lauralou

    lauralou Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Dec 10, 2007
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    Storm is a 5 month old Andalusian pullet, normal weight. She has not laid an egg yet, and eats starter crumbles, and the occasional stolen layer pellet. She sleeps in a coop at night, with pine shavings for bedding. She free ranges during the day.

    She was perfectly healthy last night, seemed just fine this morning. This afternoon, I noticed that she was laying under the deck, making odd sounds. The sounds were wheezing, I suppose, it almost sounds like a song, but it is with every inhalation and every exhalation of her breath. Almost as if she were snoring.

    I wanted to examine her, so I took out treats. All the chickens came running, except Storm. She just laid there. That made me really worried! So I crawled under the deck, collected her and brought her inside. I can find no injuries on her anywhere. I have looked down her throat with a flashlight. Nothing unusual that I can see. There is no drainage from her nostrils. Nor are they plugged. Her eyes look fine also.

    She has not drunk any water on her own since she has been inside, although I dipped her beak in water and she drank a little. Her poo was normal, maybe a bit on the dry side.

    I fed her a few pieces of bread soaked in oil. No real change. So I put some oil in a syringe and dribbled it in her mouth. She swallowed it, and it seemed to help a bit. The wheezing is not as loud as it was. My husband massaged her throat and crop. Also, oddly enough, he held her body sort of upside down with her head down below, and the wheezing stopped. But started back up when she was in a normal position. Also, occasionally she makes a strange sort of sneezing sound. Like a dog's bark, really.

    Does anyone have any idea what could be wrong with Storm, and what I could do to help her? Taking her to the vet is not an option.

    Thanks in advance. Any help is truly appreciated.
     
  2. kimh

    kimh Out Of The Brooder

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    Did you figure out what was wrong? I have a 21 week old Silver Laced Wyandotte hen that is doing the same thing -- it sounds like a high pitched bark - but she shakes her head at the same time - she was perfectly fine 2 hours ago but now she's making this strange noise and doesn't make her usually pretty clucking noise. She had mud all over her beak as well - I wonder if she has mud stuck in her throat.
     
  3. lauralou

    lauralou Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Kim,

    She isn't any better, but she isn't any worse, either. Maybe someone who has been thru this before will be online soon and we can both get some help.

    If you do try any to give her oil like I did, make sure that you don't squirt it in her mouth. She needs to be able to drink it herself, so it doesn't go into her lungs. Of course, the oil only helped temporarily. She's wheezing loudly again.

    I hope that your girl gets over this, and that mine does too! [​IMG]
     
  4. kimh

    kimh Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 12, 2008
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    I gave her yogurt and garlic and she seems to be doing better - but I just gave it to her so we'll see. I only have 4 hens and they live in a very large indoor/outdoor coop - - they took a pretty serious dust bath today - and the lawn service cut the yard and weed whacked so I'm hoping it's only an allergy or something she sucked in. She's drinking normal and chasing bugs so I guess that's a good sign. Poop is normal too. We have a county fair this week -I think I'll try to find a chicken vet while I am there -- just in case.
     
  5. lauralou

    lauralou Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Dec 10, 2007
    Central Virginia
    I'm glad your pullet is doing better.

    Storm is doing quite a bit better now, too. I'm beginning to think that the crazy sound she was making is a song, and she is starting to lay an egg. One of her "sisters" laid a first egg today, so I'm hopeful.

    I guess we'll both have to wait until tomorrow morning, and see how they are.
     
  6. lauralou

    lauralou Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Maybe I should change the title to "Is my chicken dying, or laying an egg?" [​IMG]
     
  7. kimh

    kimh Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 12, 2008
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    Just checked on them for the evening and Mabel seems fine. Someone laid a HUGE egg yesterday -- largest egg I've seen -- won't even fit in the egg carton. It definitely didn't come from my Red Stars - Minnie or Molly - so it's either from Mabel (Wyandotte) or Miley (Orppington) - -but I don't think the noise she made today was egg laying - she definitely sounded like it was something in the airway.

    Hope tomorrow is a happy healthy hen day!
     
  8. lauralou

    lauralou Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I hope so, too!

    Have you cracked that huge egg yet? It may be a double yolker.
     
  9. kimh

    kimh Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 12, 2008
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    Haven't cracked it open yet and I haven't had any of them lay an egg since -- hope everything is okay. Mabel is breathing totally normal today but I thought her poop was a little soft - -but then again they just ate a ton of organic lettuce. How is yours doing?
     
  10. lauralou

    lauralou Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Dec 10, 2007
    Central Virginia
    Storm is much better now. She isn't lethargic anymore, in fact she's pretty active. She is eating and drinking. She is still singing her strange song occasionally, but her lungs sound clear.

    I tried to give her a warm bath in case she was eggbound. She looked at me like I was crazy, and promptly jumped out of the water. So, maybe not eggbound.

    Each and every one of my hens and pullets have given me fits for a few days before they actually started laying eggs. You know, checking out all of the nestboxes, doing the egglaying call, getting me excited for nothing... I'm hoping that this is just a new brand of pre-egglaying jitters.

    I'm cautiously optimistic. [​IMG]
     

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