Chicken Help

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We found 110 results for category 'Chicken Health'

Q: Is Salmonella a concern with backyard chickens?
A: Not usually, but let us explain why. Humans do not catch salmonella from chicks or chickens the way you would catch a cold from your neighbor.... read more

Q: Should I get my birds vaccinated?
A: Marek's disease is a deadly, highly contagious "lymphoproliferative" disease affecting chickens. It is the #1 disease-related killer of chickens. It... read more

Q: What is this black spot or thin string attached to my baby chick's rear end?
A: It's your chick's umbilical cord, and if you notice, that black, scabby spot or string will be below your check's vent or "pooper." Be SURE not to... read more

Q: There is a black spot on my chicken's face! Should I be worried?
A: When a chicken gets a peck or a scrape on a comb or face, this will manifest as a black spot or scab, and isn't usually a cause for concern. If ALL... read more

Q: How do I care for a wounded chicken?
A: It is stressful to have a hurt chicken because an avian veterinarian can be hard to find, but don't panic. If you can't locate a vet, simple first... read more

Q: Do I need to give my shipped chicks vitamins and electrolytes when they arrive?
A:

We don't generally think it is a good idea to offer anything but plain, clean water unless your chicks are exceedingly stressed.

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Q: What is medicated feed all about--do I need it?
A: Medicated feed is formulated for chicks to help them combat coccidiosis, a disease that is found just about everywhere in the environment. Most... read more

Q: Why don't you offer vaccinations for bantams?
A: The reason we don't offer vaccinations for bantams is that the vaccine is often ineffective for them because the birds are so tiny that it is too... read more

Q: Are you a member of the National Poultry Improvement Plan (NPIP)?
A: Yes! Our hatching facility and all other breeders with whom we contract are NPIP-certified. If you would like NPIP papers to be included with your... read more

Q: What are the signs of mites or lice and how do I treat my birds if they have an infestation?
A: Mites and lice are a common problem for chickens and can be carried in by wild birds, so keep that in mind. That means that if you have an... read more

Q: What are the rough patches and hard pimples on my egg shells?
A: This is usually an occasional thing, although younger or older hens are more prone to it. If your chicken is young, sometimes rough shells can occur... read more

Q: Why does my hen sometimes lay eggs with ridges halfway down the shell?
A: You may be describing what is called a "body checked egg." Body checks are ridges or grooves that occur around an egg, usually at the pointed end.... read more

Q: What is the blood spot in my hen's egg?
A: These spots aren't related to having a rooster--or not!--in your flock. Presuming they are fertile, eggs with blood or meat spots are actually less... read more

Q: Why did my chicken lay a shell-less egg?
A: A shell-less egg is a strange sight! You might think a shell-less egg would look like a cracked egg: a mess of white and yolk soaking into nesting... read more

Q: My chicken has a lump or tumor on her chest--what should I do?
A: You are probably seeing your chicken's crop. A chicken's crop is a part of her digestive system, and is located on her breast. You see it in the... read more

Q: My flock is pecking one another! What should I do?
A: Pecking, also called picking, is almost always the result of high stress levels. When that happens, the birds will sometimes pluck each others'... read more

Q: Do my chickens need to be wormed, and if so, what schedule should I use?
A: If your chickens have worms, you will want to treat them. Some signs you can look for at home are pale combs, a drop in laying, and watery poo.... read more

Q: My hen has sticky, tar-looking poop--is there anything wrong?
A: Probably not. Chickens actually produce two types of poo: fecal poo and cecal poo. Cecal poo is thicker, stinkier and stickier. It usually looks sort... read more

Q: What if one of my chicks dies on the way to me?
A: Losses are rare (we see them happen about 1% of the time), but they do occur. For that reason, we recommend that if you have children, make sure they... read more

Q: Are there any concerns I should have when keeping or caring for chickens while pregnant?
A: You will want to take the same kinds of precautions you would take with any pets: wash your hands after handling them and so forth. Avian and human... read more

Q: Do I need to be worried about bird flu if I keep chickens?
A: Probably not worried--but it's a good idea to be informed about it.

Bird flu, or Avian Influenza (AI), is a viral disease that can infect...
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Q: What biosecurity should I practice to protect my flock from AI and other illnesses?
A: Good question! Most illnesses or even infestations (such as mites or worms) are contracted when your birds are exposed to other birds, either... read more

Q: Are there symptoms I should watch for that mean my birds are seriously ill? If they do get seriously ill, whom should I call?
A: Yes, as a pet owner, you are responsible for keeping your pet chickens safe and healthy, so it's important that you watch to make sure they don't get... read more

Q: What is the Biosecurity for Birds campaign and how can I find more information about it?
A: Biosecurity for Birds is a public awareness campaign started by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service in... read more

Q: How can I tell if my flock is infected with Salmonella? What are the symptoms?
A: While you won't be able to make a firm diagnosis of Salmonella on your own, it will be easy for you to see that your hens are sick. Chickens sick... read more

Q: How is Salmonella infection transmitted to chickens in the first place?
A: You probably don't have to worry about well cared for backyard hens getting ill with salmonella if you provide a clean environment for them. Hens in... read more

Q: What can I do to reduce the risk of my birds getting sick with Salmonella or another illness?
A: The easiest thing to do is simply to provide your birds with safe, roomy, clean conditions. read more

Q: How do I know which chickens feeds have hormones and which are hormone-free?
A: There are no hormones in any brand of commercial chicken feed in the United States, according to the US Cooperative Extension Service. We think that... read more

Q: Should I be concerned that my hen laid an egg with blood on the shell?
A: When a hen has just begin laying, there can occasionally be a little blood on the egg shell, but it is usually no cause for concern. Eventually her... read more

Q: What can my chicken's comb tell me about his or her health?
A: A chicken's comb can be indicative of her circulation and condition. For instance pale pink, shrunken combs may indicate anemia, a mite infestation... read more

Q: Today I noticed that the tip of one hen's beak has broken off--how can this happen and what should I do?
A: This can occasionally happen, although it is rare. A chicken's beak will continue to grow throughout her lifetime, so as long as it is just the tip,... read more

Q: Will my lawn be safe for my pet chickens at the same time it's safe for dogs or cats, after the exterminator has sprayed it?
A: Well, having your lawn sprayed with pesticides while you are keeping chickens isn't a good idea---it isn't something most of us would ever want to... read more

Q: Why is my chick's beak getting crooked, and what should I do?
A: Usually, chickens with crossed beaks or scissor beaks lead long, normal lives.

In most cases, this defect is caused by the chick...
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Q: How do I dispose of a dead chick or chicken?
A: This is a difficult question to answer definitively, since what to do with a dead pet or animal can vary depending on your your state, city and even... read more

Q: I got Marek's vaccinations for my chicks from another hatchery, but they got sick and some died within two weeks. When I asked them if it was Marek's disease, they just denied it and asked about whether their brooder was set up right. Is this Marek's... am I right to be upset?
A: You're not wrong to be upset at the loss of your pets, of course, but if you're upset at your hatchery for suggesting that deaths weren't related to... read more

Q: Are oversized eggs that are difficult for my hens to pass caused by overfeeding?
A: It is not likely that the problem is overfeeding. We recommend feeding free choice and not limiting their feed: underfeeding usually causes more... read more

Q: I got the Marek's vaccination for my chickens, but one chicken seems sick! Is the vaccination not working?
A: If your chicken received the Marek's vaccination, she will most likely be protected from the symptoms of Marek's disease, but a small percentage of... read more

Q: Why does my chicken have a bare spot on her chest? She's not molting!
A: If she's not molting, isn't getting picked on and isn't suffering from external parasites like mites or lice, it's possible that the bare spot on her... read more

Q: Will ticks attack our chickens? We find ticks on our dogs.
A: Probably not. Chickens actually eat deer ticks, wood ticks, and dog ticks (as well as other types), and these are the most common ticks that bother... read more

Q: Is wry neck a genetic weakness that I should be worried about seeing in my chickens' offspring?
A: If you have a hen with wry neck, it is probably not a genetic problem... but read on, because the problem with answering that question definitively... read more

Q: Should I order extra chickens so enough survive into adulthood?
A: Normally you want to order the number of chickens you want to end up with---don't order extras with the expectation that some will die. But there are... read more

Q: Is bumblefoot comtagious?
A: First, we're sorry that your flock is having problems with bumblefoot! The more technical name for this problem is ulcerative pododermatitis, but... read more

Q: Why does my chicken have trouble keeping his balance?
A: That's a tough one. A problem like this could be caused by many things.

It may end up being nothing of concern...
One of...
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Q: Why do the fresh eggs from one of our hens always have a strange, unpleasant fishy smell?
A:

If this is the only symptom you're seeing, she's probably not sick. (If she does show other signs of illness you will want to take her to a... read more

Q: Is your breeder stock vaccinated for Marek's Disease?

A: Yes, we do vaccinate our chicken parent stock.

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Q: How do I help a chick that isn't eating or drinking?
A:

Well, first remember that if you hatched these babies at home, chicks don't actually need to eat or drink for the first two or three... read more

Q: My hen was vaccinated for Marek's disease as a chick, but I still lost her to this illness. How could this have happened?

A: Marek’s disease is very common and will eventually end up in most backyard flocks, whether or not the flocks have been vaccinated. It's strange but... read more

Q: My chicken cannot walk.Does she have Marek’s disease?
A: Lameness is a very common symptom of Mareks’ disease, but there are many other conditions that can also cause paralysis or lameness in your chicken. ... read more

Q: I plan on vaccinating my chickens – is there anything else I can do to prevent my flock from getting Marek’s disease?
A: In order to prevent the symptoms of Marek’s disease from affecting your flock, wehighly recommend getting your baby chicks vaccinated at hatch.... read more

Q: Coccidiosis Overview
A: Coccidiosis Also called
Cocci

Prevalence-
Very common

Signs
General signs...
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Q: Spraddle leg overview
A: Spraddle leg Also called
Splay leg

Prevalence-
Common

Signs