Why are my chickens dying?!?!?


In the Brooder
8 Years
Apr 19, 2011
I'm new at this and I only had 4 chickens to begin with! They are April babies. I keep them in a tractor, though recently started letting them free-range for a little bit. Last Wednesday, one of my them just up and died. She seemed fine in the morning and we found her dead in the afternoon. It wasn't even hot that day. (We have had a lot of rain lately though

So I started treating with Sulmet and Gallimycin in their water. Maybe I got the dosage wrong. Today, another hen died. She seemed fine yesterday, though a bit tamer than usual, but was eating and drinking. Now we are left with just 2 chickens - they are our favorites and I just can't lose them too! One of them is definitely not well. Though she is eating and drinking, her comb and wattle are paler, her eyes have lost their spark, and she is not her usual talkative, spunky self. I caught her pooping and it was watery, yellow, and green. She is the only one who had started laying. I noticed she hollered for quite a while after she laid an egg yesterday, and it was streaked with blood. I added Wazine and electrolytes to their water, doubled the dose of the other meds, and gave them a bit of yogurt tonight.

Should I take her to a vet? Is it too late to save her? Should I have a necropsy done on the dead hen? Any ideas would be greatly appreciated.
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Was there any other signs of illness other then the chicken that just up an died? You do have to be careful when giving chickens antibiotics. They are very sensitive to it, a little goes along ways. Make sure you go by the direction on the package. Giving extra doesn't work with chickens. it would be a good idea if you could take one to the vet to see what might be going on. Good luck.
I havnt a clue what you're dealing with. You used sulmet and gallimycin in the same water... possible incorrect dosages, adding wazine, doubling the meds in addition to electrolytes...
Overdosing with sulmet alone causes toxicity. I recommend you cull your last chicken and disinfect everything with oxine; waterers, feeders and inside their house as well.
Cull her?!?! I can't imagine! She is very loved. Both remaining chickens are very loved.
I would much prefer to try and save them than just assume they'll die and do it myself.

As far as the dosage of the meds, I followed the advice of a vet tech friend of mine who has over 100 chickens and years of experience.
(ETA: The initial Sulmet dosage I used was 1 oz per gallon and the Gallimycin dose was 1/2 tsp per gallon.)
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Sounds like you are doing everything you can to save them. Maybe you should lay off the meds. since you double dosed them? Just continue the vitamin/ electrolytes for a few more days.

You can go here http://www.organicvet.co.uk/Poultryweb/Index.htm and read up on symptoms and some can be diagnosed by color of their poop.

Attached is a chart for dosage if you do need to treat them. http://www.xtremegamebirds.com/Dosage Chart.html

Keep them warm and quiet and see if they have the strength to pull thru. As long as they are eating and drinking you have a chance. Good luck...
There is obviously something going through your small flock killing your birds. When you provide medications to birds, you dont mix them together. Mixing them with each other can make them everything from ineffective to deadly. This includes apple cider vinegar, electrolytes and vitamins. You should never double dose medications...as you stated.
You stated she is pooping watery yellow and green poop, that is a severe bacterial infection...possibly E Coli. If in fact it is E Coli you need to be feeding her high powered probiotics, baytril and poultry nutri drench all mixed together to make a mash and give it to her to eat. To find out if it's E Coli, you'll need to send a poop sample off to a veterinary school of medicine at a college or contact your state agriculture department to find out where to send it. You can also take a sample to your vet and let him look at it under a microscope for cocci and worm oocysts. Most vets are not set up to check for E Coli. The vet could send it off to be tested for you if you wish, for a fee.
Sad update. Just took remaining 2 chickens in to the vet. He gave the sick one an injection for a bacterial infection, as she had a lot of green diarrhea. Brought her home and she died in my arms. I am a horrible chicken-keeper. I just don't understand.
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It is not always something you can fix...dont beat yourself up...I lost one earlier this year who was fine in the morn and dead later that day...I have one now that is acting sleepy unless I try and catch him...no other symptoms? It is sometimes near impossible even for a vet to be right when the patient cant tell you what is wrong/hurting...Sorry for you losses...
Sad update. Just took remaining 2 chickens in to the vet. He gave the sick one an injection for a bacterial infection, as she had a lot of green diarrhea. Brought her home and she died in my arms. I am a horrible chicken-keeper. I just don't understand.

Terribly sorry to read this. You sure did everything you knew to do. Don't let it stop you from trying again.​

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