We must often observe our chickens, looking for signs of abnormal behavior or sickness. We should immediately remove aggressive, sick or injured chickens. Chickens that have the tendency to eat eggs should also be removed, because sooner or later all the other chickens will copy this behavior. Generally, when our chickens have lost their appetite, sleep all day, cough, shake their heads, have difficulty in breathing or have sudden changes in their skin, we must call a licensed veterinarian as soon as possible.
Infectious bronchitis is maybe the most common chicken disease. The virus travels fast through the air and can really decimate thousands of flocks in a region. The most common symptoms are coughing, gasping, depression and diarrhea. You can vaccinate your chickens against infectious bronchitis.
Erysipelas can also be a major problem, especially for free range chickens in fields and farms previously housing pigs or goats. The disease is caused by the bacterium Erysipelothrix insidiosa and can lead to sudden death. The most common symptoms are depression, sleepiness and swollen snood. The bad news is that the bacterium can live in alkaline soils for years, being extremely resistant to disinfectants. The good news is that erysipelas can be treated if diagnosed in the early stages.
Fowl Pox, Botulism and Fowl Cholera are also common chicken diseases.
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6.) Backyard Chicken Health & Diseases
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