Hens has lost her voice


One of my hens has lost her voice. Is this a symptom of illness?

Yes, a hen that loses her voice can certainly be a sign of illness. First things first, get her away from the flock and into a warm area that is nowhere near the other chickens.

Listen to her breathing. Oftentimes, a hen that is either hoarse or voiceless has respiratory issues. If her breathing sounds labored or fluid-like, she should get to the veterinarian. Antibiotics are indicated. Watch for any nasal or ocular discharge as well.

If the hen’s breathing is fine, check her mouth and throat for sores. Look carefully in her throat in the event that there is a gapeworm.

If all looks well, try to get her a little cool water to drink as she could have a dust build up in her throat.

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Bantam rooster having problems breathing and crowing

by Leticia
(Cedar Creek, TX)

I have a Bantam rooster having problems breathing and crowing. His dad died from this but I don't know what is wrong.

I contacted my local feed store that has a "chicken guy" and he said it was gape worms. Has anyone dealt with this issue? What did you use to treat? Thank you.

The “chicken guy” could be correct. There are a number of internal parasites or worms that can affect our chickens.

If you suspect his diagnosis is correct I would recommend a visit to that feed store to purchase a recommended product and follow the directions.

When treating a rooster (that you don’t plan to eat) there is little worry as to which product you use.

Taking a sample of his droppings to the vet might tell you for sure. Gape worm eggs are coughed up by infected poultry, and swallowed and spread around in their droppings.

Earth worms are an intermediate host, when the parasite is present. This doesn’t mean all earth worms spread gape worms, but there is the possibility.

Anytime you suspect parasites, or any disease in your flock, it’s time to act, even if just one chicken seems affected.

That one chicken can be the breeding ground for a problem that could infect your whole flock.

Internal and external parasites will be most concentrated where the chickens spend the most time together.

I would consider this rooster infested, once the problem is this obvious, and separate him from the group.

I would confine his droppings to an area that is easy to clean, so you can dispose of them easily.

Throwing them in a compost pile will spread the problem, if gape worms or some other internal parasite is the problem.

I would also suggest giving your chicken coop a thorough cleaning, once he is removed.

Most deworming products are broad spectrum. You can buy from the feed store or check in with your local vet for the most effective product and dosing instructions.

Any medication given by mouth or on the skin is absorbed into the blood stream, to some degree. If treating chickens that provide food (eggs or meat), you should follow the directions for withdrawal times.

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