You left me hanging ... more info on Olive, Roxy and Rocco

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by olivesmom, May 5, 2008.

  1. olivesmom

    olivesmom In the Brooder

    May 2, 2008
    I am starting another post because I had people posting not to go with the antibiotics but since I posted back nothing... I really am interested in your opinions so I have added more info.

    Thanks ... Below is where we left off under Updated sick chick died where to get medicine:

    I really appreciate all of your information!

    I don't know how many of you read my original question yesterday about Roxy, the baby that died. She slept almost all day. I checked on her over and over again last night and though I am not a vet and have no experience with chickens it became clear that she was having a hard time breathing.

    I believe it is my fault she got sick because I don't think we had the lamp close enough to her the first day we took her home. Being so tiny I think she caught a cold. We had her in the bathroom and the air would have come on because we are in Phoenix. I am sure a draft got to her.

    I went back to the feed store today where she was purchased last Thursday. They independently said I should try the Terracycline for the other two chicks. Something I omitted to post (I thought I might be over staying my welcome with all these questions) is that Olive started to sneeze in the wee hours of the morning. Not a lot but every once in a while and though she is up and about she also seemed a little "tired".

    I was over medicated with antibiotics as a kid and ended up on IV antibiotics and then surgery while I was pregnant because they could not kill the bug ... so I really do appreciate the importance of not running to antibiotics but after watching Roxy die and start to see Olive decline just a bit I think it may be better to be safe than sorry ...

    However, with the additional information if you still disagree PLEASE let me know. By the way I moved out of the country and then back as a kid and without spell check I am hopeless.

  2. DuckLady

    DuckLady Administrator

    Jan 11, 2007
    NE Washington State
    It is not safe to use antibiotics without knowing the cause of the illness. You don't get antibiotics for a cold, neither should any animal. And certainly not for "declining just a bit."

    It is totally up to you what you do with your birds, but I will say over and over gain....Giving meds, any meds without knowing what you are giving them for is not good for your chick.

    Some chicks just fail to thrive. No reason for it, they just do. You should always expect to lose some, and if you don't count yourself fortunate.

    Feed stores often don't have a clue what they are talking about. (Some do, but most are just selling stuff).

    The experience here on BYC is par none short of a qualified experienced avian vet with poultry background.
  3. Gindee77

    Gindee77 Songster

    Mar 31, 2008
    QCA, Illinois
    I totally understand your frustration over all of this. And I'm sorry if I come across as being harsh...I certainly don't mean to. But I am so confused. I have a feeling you want to do something help your chick and that's very commendable. But if you have firsthand knowledge of the danger of medicating with antibiotics, when you don't know what's wrong with your chicks, why would you want to give them antibiotics? I guess I'm confused at why you would do this?

    If I had a nickel for everyone I've heard in my long old life that's said "I'll just give this horse a shot of antibiotics before we haul him to prevent shipping fever"....or..."I am going to finish up this old prescription of antibiotics for this cold I'm getting"...or "Give 'em a shot of antibiotics, it couldn't hurt"... I would be a millionaire. People think it prevents disease and it just doesn't. Just because someone at a feed store said to give your chick antibiotics, after your personal experiences, I would think that would be the last thing you would do. I totally understand the desire to help your chicks and to feel like you're doing something to help, but maybe you need to look into other means of doing that.

    My heart goes out to you...but sometimes chicks die. It's why most people buy 12 when they only want 10. It's a given that some chicks will die. It's a sad reality of owning them. It doesn't make you a bad chick-mama, not at all.

    Good luck and I know you will do what you have to do, but do some research. Or call a vet...ask about antibiotics. See what a vet says.
  4. olivesmom

    olivesmom In the Brooder

    May 2, 2008
    I spent probably 12 hours in the last three days on this page non stop. On 3/28 under emergancies a long discussion went on about baby chicks being put on this stuff from the get go. It made is sound like it was common place and being that this is my first time with chicks I trusted ... obviously more than I should have. After watching one chick die I thought I had asked the correct questions. The feed store we go to is not a pet store ... it is totally a feed store and I mistakenly assumed that as I explained that Roxy could not breath and they then suggested much as those answering me on the page had that Terramycin was the correct remede ... I thought I was not over reacting.

    I have never been to a feed store before. I thought they knew what they were talking about but even on this page it sounds like some hatcheries do the same.

    Nobody answered my question about a sick baby chick ... how much sleep is too much.

    Anyway, that is why I gave the chicks the antibiotics.

  5. Cetawin

    Cetawin Chicken Beader

    Mar 20, 2008
    NW Kentucky
    I think your questions are valid as is your concern for your chicks. Tow of my girls began sneezing when they were about 2 weeks old. I took one of them to my vet...he could find no signs of respiratory infection but the sinuses were irritated. He gave me antibiotics for all 6 girls to keep them on for a week. Since problems. I gave them yogurt to replace the flora that the antibiotics destroy. They are 7 weeks old tomorrow and doing good.

    With the breathing difficulty, it could have been several things and not necessarily a cold. What were the other symptoms aside from being tired or weakened? Discharge from nose? Watery eyes, how was baby's poo? Sometimes, they just do not thrive and it is not a situation you can fix.

    Treat them as you would your child and they should be fine. [​IMG]
    Last edited: May 5, 2008
  6. olivesmom

    olivesmom In the Brooder

    May 2, 2008
    Thanks. Really she spent the day just laying there and breathng heavy. Soooo tired and weak. I never started her on anything. She died within 24 hours. Olive is the one that started sneezing ... or atleast thats what it sounds like to me. She also began to lay there more but nowhere near as much as Roxy. Anyway, at this point I am just going to hope they continue to do alright. Now I am questioning everything ... down to the dosage the feed store told me to use. It is not going to be a fun week but assuming we make it through the week I will be happy.

  7. Tuffoldhen

    Tuffoldhen Flock Mistress

    Jan 30, 2007
    I don't know if this has been asked, what do you have them on for bedding?...
  8. Quote:What was the dosage that the feed store told you to use? Is should be 1 teaspoon per gallon for matience or 2 teaspoons per gallon for treatment.
  9. arlee453

    arlee453 Songster

    Aug 13, 2007
    near Charlotte NC
    As far as the sleeping thing - chicks sleep A LOT. Especially if they only have a few others to wake them up evey 2 seconds. The will fall over standing up and then their beak hits the ground and then it jolts them awake...rinse...repeat.

    Sleeping a lot is not a sign of illness.

    I also have to ask what you have them on for bedding. Sometimes they will eat the bedding, and they should never be housed on cedar shavings.

    I also agree that in my own experience with feed stores (even stores like TSC where they have a 'formal' education process) at least 75% of what they tell you is either too simplistic an answer ('one died?? Give 'em all antibiotics...') or just down right wrong or dangerous.

    Wheezing before death is often typical too - regardless of infection or otherwise. As the body starts to decline, often cardiac insufficeny takes over, and fluid builds up which makes it harder to breathe. It isn't necessarily a sign of any infection at all.

    I also would recommend feeding yogurt with active culture to them while you have the antibiotic in the water, and for at least a few days after. Antibiotics may or may not have any impact on your chicks in a positive way (if they do actually not have an active BACTERIAL infection, which I'm not at all convinced is the problem based on what you described) What I am sure of is that antibiotics wreak havoc on the digestive system, killing off the positive and helpful bacteria in the gut that helps digest food.

    Anyway, I am really sorry about your chick. I hope everything turns out OK with your survivors.
  10. olivesmom

    olivesmom In the Brooder

    May 2, 2008
    They are on Aspen and yes they try to eat it. From what others have said I am taking that as normal just learning what to peck at and what not to.

    I had another crisis this morning when I went in to find three happy chicks and an empty water that was 1/3 full last night. It appears in all the scratching they did during the night the shavings built up on the edge of the water and acted as a wick leaving the bottle empty and bottom of the bedding damp.

    Cleaned it out fill the water bottle. This time I downed the dose of Terramycin to one teaspoon. It is only a quart waterbottle and the feed store had avised me to put a HEAPING teaspoon in there ... please don't beat me up ... I have learned .... I will never ask their help again ... I know this was too much. IF YOU HAVE EXPERIANCE WITH DOSEAGES AND STILL FEEL THIS IS MUCH PLEASE LET ME KNOW.

    Last night when I post about keeping the shavings out someone said I should put the water on a brick. I was worried about doing that overnight since I would not be able to check that they were able to figure it out but I have added the brick to the new cleaned out bed this morning ...

    We shall see how that goes.


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