Why is my chicken breathing like this?? Please help

OwO

Songster
7 Years
May 26, 2014
191
44
151
Hello, my 7-8 year old chicken Coco has recently been open-mouth breathing with her mouth containing a lot of saliva. I made a couple other posts about her having growths in her neck. They shrunk in size, but have gotten a little bigger again and at the same time she has started breathing like this again.

Here is a link to a video of it on my google photos:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/3kdkCaxmZ2VvbMYZ7

She is acting a little lethargic, however she usually does while moulting (which she is), so it's hard to tell how much of it is due to whatever illness she has. As far as I can tell she is still eating and drinking, albeit maybe a little less than normal.

The blowing-up / swelling of her face while breathing you can see in the video has been happening for as long as I've had her, although it has worsened. Do you know what the cause of this could be? How could I help her?

I am very confident that the growths inside her neck have something to do with this, as the first time I noticed them about a month ago was when she first had saliva around her beak. They shrunk, but have now grown and she is doing the same thing again.
 

OwO

Songster
7 Years
May 26, 2014
191
44
151
She looks lethargic. Her eyes are almost closed...
I wish I could help. I'll tag a few people that might be able to.

@Banana01 @Eggcessive

Thank you!

As for her eyes, they have always been like that, not sure why. She just has like really thick eyelids haha, here's an older pic of her where you can kind of see it. We make fun of her all the time for having an ugly face

1636865490166.png


7-8 is pretty old for a chicken, it could be heart trouble. I'm sorry
I'm really hoping it's not the case :( I am probably going to take her to the vet to see what the growths are, but I thought I'd see if anyone here knows what it could be first
 

Banana01

Songster
Feb 18, 2021
712
1,173
221
San Martin, Peru
I have never had chickens that are 7 or 8 years old. Age is definitely a factor and I don't have experience with older hens. My oldest hen is maybe 4 years.

The mucous does indicate some kind of infection, and the lumps could be related. Are they like cysts and full of puss? Or are they more hard and scab like?

I wish I could help more. I think an antibiotic to treat pneumonia like illnesses would be necessary. But for that you would need a vet visit and prescription. What antibiotics can you get or do you have anything on hand? If nothing else, tilosin may be helpful.

I just lost a young 6 month old silkie that had the same symptoms, but she also had coryza. I did not give her antibiotics and i regret that. She had excessive mucous in her mouth and i found her dead suddenly. I would avoid giving vitamins and treat with antibiotics.

Eucalyptol and guafenesine is an expectorant that may help if you can find that. I bought a mixture from the vet where i live. Or try taking a cough drop in warm water to extract the eucaliptol. May help with the mucous if it gets bad.

Finally if her condition starts to worsen and she just seems lethargic and isn't eating, aspirin may help relieve some of her symptoms and give her a chance to eat a little bit. But a visit to a vet and an antibiotic is probably necessary.
 

demonic

Songster
Apr 12, 2021
322
302
156
New York
Hello, my 7-8 year old chicken Coco has recently been open-mouth breathing with her mouth containing a lot of saliva. I made a couple other posts about her having growths in her neck. They shrunk in size, but have gotten a little bigger again and at the same time she has started breathing like this again.

Here is a link to a video of it on my google photos:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/3kdkCaxmZ2VvbMYZ7

She is acting a little lethargic, however she usually does while moulting (which she is), so it's hard to tell how much of it is due to whatever illness she has. As far as I can tell she is still eating and drinking, albeit maybe a little less than normal.

The blowing-up / swelling of her face while breathing you can see in the video has been happening for as long as I've had her, although it has worsened. Do you know what the cause of this could be? How could I help her?

I am very confident that the growths inside her neck have something to do with this, as the first time I noticed them about a month ago was when she first had saliva around her beak. They shrunk, but have now grown and she is doing the same thing again.
I do not know how to help as I am not experienced with this, but I hope she gets better. :(
 

OwO

Songster
7 Years
May 26, 2014
191
44
151
I have never had chickens that are 7 or 8 years old. Age is definitely a factor and I don't have experience with older hens. My oldest hen is maybe 4 years.

The mucous does indicate some kind of infection, and the lumps could be related. Are they like cysts and full of puss? Or are they more hard and scab like?

I wish I could help more. I think an antibiotic to treat pneumonia like illnesses would be necessary. But for that you would need a vet visit and prescription. What antibiotics can you get or do you have anything on hand? If nothing else, tilosin may be helpful.

I just lost a young 6 month old silkie that had the same symptoms, but she also had coryza. I did not give her antibiotics and i regret that. She had excessive mucous in her mouth and i found her dead suddenly. I would avoid giving vitamins and treat with antibiotics.

Eucalyptol and guafenesine is an expectorant that may help if you can find that. I bought a mixture from the vet where i live. Or try taking a cough drop in warm water to extract the eucaliptol. May help with the mucous if it gets bad.

Finally if her condition starts to worsen and she just seems lethargic and isn't eating, aspirin may help relieve some of her symptoms and give her a chance to eat a little bit. But a visit to a vet and an antibiotic is probably necessary.

Thank you very much for this reply, sorry that I haven't responded yet. I took her to the vet 3 days ago and she was prescribed some antibiotics. She had lost weight since the last visit a few weeks before.

She's currently doing well and eating her medicine without issue and the breathing issues and saliva appear to have decreased a lot for the moment (although this did happen before and they once again returned). She is currently scratching around eating bugs mostly as normal, although still some saliva and occasional open mouth breathing.

As for the lumps, they are inside her skin so I can't see what they look like, but they feel hard and round. The vet said that it's unlikely anything will be able to be done about them surgically due to the risk of them being in her neck, as well as her age. I'm glad the antibiotics seem to be working so far though, assuming that's the reason she's recovering for now :)
 
Last edited:

bmanty

Songster
Mar 27, 2017
70
136
126
Fergus Falls MN
I am having a similar issue, open mouth, sleeps on the ground now, saliva glopped up inside, today I noticed what looked like food blockage in the back of the throat, it was gross. I have tried VetRx for a couple day snow, she is old too, probably between 5 - 8 years old. Lethargic as well, doesnt move much but still eats. I think it may just be age and getting sick. The others seem fine. What meds did the vet give you or did they tell you any over the counter stuff may help.

Thank you!
 

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