Health

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148 Responses to Health

  1. philip says:

    Hi, I was wondering if anyone can help. I have looked online for FLUBENVET, for treating my chickens again worms. Not sure which one to buy . they advertise it as 1% or 2.5% in 60 gramme amounts.

    • Keeping Chickens says:

      The 1% Flubenvet is a 60g pot enough to treat 20 chickens. The 2.5% is 240g pot called a gamekeeper pack which will treat many hundreds of birds. It is stronger so the amount you give is less.

      The 1% is usually what you would want as a backyard keeper with a few birds.

  2. Jane Ross says:

    Hi there, hope you can help.
    My chicken developed a swelling below her right eye (like a massive plook but with no head) I thought it may be her sinuses and started to give her 60mg Tylan for 4 days but it only relieved the redness, not the swelling. Her eye has the occasional bubbles but is not pussy. She eats, she poops, she runs around as normal but the swelling is still there. Took her to another vet who supplied Baytril at .5ml per day for 5 days, started yesterday. Any suggestions as to what it may be? The two vets I have been to are not really poultry vets (seems to be a rarity in Scotland) so have been a bit vague with help. She is an ex-bat rescue hen about one & a half years old and was low in weight anyway but the keel bone seems to be more pronounced now. She was wormed with flubenvet in May and has all the usual extras added to her food for health. Any suggestiong on how to fatten them up. Dont care if it stops them laying for a while. Just want them to be happy. I dont believe she is laying at the moment. Hope you can help.

    • Keeping Chickens says:

      I’m sorry, I am not really sure, it’s not something I’ve seen in any of my hens. What I will say though is that if it doesn’t seem painful then can she live with it?

      Be careful with Baytril. It has been banned in the US and some poultry vets here are now advising that you never eat the eggs. There is more information on poultrykeeper.com in the medication section about antibiotics and poultry.

      As for expert poultry vets, I would suggest St. David’s poultry team who also run Chickenvet. They have a location in Scotland although I can’t remember where…

      • Jane Ross says:

        Thanks for that info. In desperation I took her to the Dick Vet at Roslyn nr. Edinburgh and saw their top poultry vet. Turns out that it is a blocked sinus along with the fact that she and her sisters have the Mycoplasma bug. Now on larger dose of Tylan and for longer time along with Metacam. The rest of the girls are on the Tylan too. If the lump does not go down then it will mean a small op. to drain sinus. Whilst at the vet she decided to leave a few deposits which the vet is testing for coccidiosis, so awaiting the results. Just wish I had went to the Dick Vet first to avoid the delay. Anyone reading this should make sure the vet they go to is a poultry vet as majority of vets don’t seem to be all that clued up on chickens (sorry for that vets, as you have done a lot of hard work to be where you are). Will keep you up to date with their progress.

  3. Jane Ross says:

    Just an update. Houdini is having her operation tomorrow as the anti-biotics did not work on the sinus swelling. Poop results show no ccoccidiosis. Also turns out that the procedure is being filmed by CBBC as they have a series that involves children helping the vets on non invasive procedures. Fingers crossed that all goes well and if she makes the final cut then I may be able to see what they do to her on the operating table.

  4. Simon says:

    Hi there,

    Two and half weeks in to keeping hens and we have our first medical issue – and my initial googling is not doing a good job of turning up any suggestions.

    I noticed yesterday that our buff Sussex girl was a little pinker around her eyes than normal – when I looked more closely today, I saw that the skin around both eyes is raw and inflamed, and I saw her scratching at one eye. The eyes themselves look OK (no discharge). Is this likely to be the first evidence of the dreaded red mite? Any suggestions for what else it might be / what else to look for greatly appreciated… Thanks!

    • Keeping Chickens says:

      Hmm it’s not something I have seen but they can get infections in the eye. I would suspect bullying, red mites (inspect coop), lice (inspect chickens near vent and under wings) and northern fowl mites (around vent, eyes, ears).

  5. Brian Jardine says:

    Hello, i have recently purchased 2 Columbian Black Tails, One just sits around Puffed up plumage and drooped tail eats occasionally , any ideas as to why

    • Keeping Chickens says:

      I would try worming her for starters (see my page on worming chickens and Flubenvet), if not, it’s TLC and see how she gets on – the symptoms are very generic ‘sick chicken’ I’m afraid.

  6. Jennie Sloan says:

    Hi, one of my girls has been acting a bit strange. For the last few days she has been keeping her distance from the other 5 and tends to just sit around constantly shaking her head. I’ve looked on various ‘forums’ where people tend to think that this could be parasites or ticks, problem is my girls aren’t very tactile and I can’t get near her to check without stressing her out. She seems to be doing less of the head shaking today and looks a bit perkier but still is keeping herself to herself. Any advice? Thank you.

    • Keeping Chickens says:

      Head shaking in my experience can be gapeworm (and they can do a funny neck stretch), Lice / Mites (in the ears especially in crested breeds), or infection in the upper respiratory tract (cold like symptoms) and they are trying to clear their nose / throat.

      To be sure you really need to examine her or take her to your vet to be examined and diagnosed.

  7. John Barton says:

    One of my six hens has started laying eggs with thin papery shells which are nearly always broken in the nest box. I’m not sure which hen it is but one of them, a speckled Marans, has just started to moult for the first time. Could the poor shells be connected to the moult? They have plenty of oyster shell which I supplement with crushed egg shell for extra calcium and I feed them organic layer’s pellets. They get Verm-X every few weeks and apple cider vinegar in their water once a month. The egg laying performance has been very good right through the winter to date, whilst my neighbours have gone weeks at a time with no eggs at all.

    • Keeping Chickens says:

      Yes it is most likely because they are coming to the end of the laying period. This is fairly common at the beginning or end of the laying period.

  8. John Barton says:

    One of my six hens has started laying eggs with thin papery shells which are invariably broken in the nest box. One of them ( a speckled marans) looks as if she is starting to moult. Could this be the one who is laying these eggs? What other reasons could there be? All hens look very healthy with lots of energy, fine postures, healthy red combs and bright beady eyes. They have plenty of oyster shell grit supplemented with crushed egg shells and I feed them on organic layers pellets. On fine days they are allowed out to roam around our extensive partly wooded garden.

    • Keeping Chickens says:

      Funny eggs are often laid at the end of he laying period, it’s nothing to worry about. These should be normal once they come into lay again in the next egg laying period.

  9. Gemma Wragg says:

    We have a small flock of free-ranging back-garden hens (7) and 4 of them are just coming up to a year old. They have been excellent layers and extremely friendly (they come over for a fuss and love being handled) however for the last 2 days they have not laid any eggs and seem to be a lot quieter and subdued. Ive had a look at them and 2 of them seem to have a couple of bald patches…could they be going through their first molt? I thought this didn’t happen until autumn? Other than this they don’t appear to have any other physical issues, clear bright eyes, bright red comb etc. and they seem to be eating and drinking normally.

    Our other 3 hens have only been with us for a few weeks, but other than the usual “pecking order” squabbles on the first day, we have had no problems with integrating them, and they have their own coop too, so as to not encroach on the original chickens territories. There certainly doesn’t appear to be any issue that could be causing our original birds concern – and as I said, up until 2 days ago our girls were fine.

    Any advice would be much appreciated, thanks.

    • Keeping Chickens says:

      It is difficult to say from the information you have given Gemma. It is unlikely they have gone into moult from what you say – feather loss can be caused by many things from them putting their head through a fence to get grass and catching that area, to them picking at one another because they are getting protein from eating the feathers… I would keep a close eye and try to see what’s going on.

  10. bartonsindevon says:

    My hens are showing partially bare bums which look rather red. Is this an infection?

    • Keeping Chickens says:

      No, chickens have very red skin around there – the colour isn’t something you should worry about. As for the lack of feathers, I would check for lice (it sounds like they might be over preening, perhaps due to lice).

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