Are you looking for a quick guide on how to treat your sick chickens? Failure to treat your birds early can result in high mortalities and possibly the failure of your poultry farming business.

In this article, we will share with your common chicken diseases and their symptoms and remedies on how to treat sick chickens.

1. Sick chickens with flu-like symptoms

Are your chickens producing the “cro cro cro” sound or they have swollen heads?

Treatment: To treat this, you can use any one of these: Respimint, Coloxan, Doxin, Interflox or Coliflox. 

Ensure there is enough heating to keep the birds warmed by using infra-red bulbs, gas brooders, charcoal burners (mbaura), glowing charcoal in clay pots or even putting hot water in water bottles and placed in the poultry house or cage. Ensure there is adequate ventilation as well to avoid suffocating the birds.

2. Sick chickens with red or blood droppings

It’s mostly likely coccidiosis. Coccidiosis usually affects the bird’s intestines causing some bleeding characterised by orange to red colour in the droppings which may also be frothy and contain mucous.The birds may become withdrawn, droopy, eat less and lose weight. To treat this, use sulphur-based drugs such as Sulfacox, Esb3, Amprolium, Coxoid and Bremamed.

Treatment: You can crush aloe vera (gavakava), mutiti bark or even chillies (mhiripiri) and put in drinking water. To prevent coccidiosis, always change bedding often and keeping your fowl runs or brooder dry.

3. Sick chickens with watery, greenish or whitish droppings

When the birds are not eating properly, they will discharge greenish droppings which may be watery. Bile (nduru) in the chicken’s stomach has to mix with feed and aid the digestion process. If chickens are not eating properly, bile (which is green in colour) will not mix with any feed and will be released as it is resulting in the greenish droppings.

Treatment: To treat this, use any of the following: Coloxan, Doxin, Interflox, Coliflox, Sulfacox, Hi-trusulf, Esb3 or Bremamed.

You can also put aloe vera (gavakava) in drinking water. It helps. Ginger (tsangamidzi) helps to boost appetite, helps with digestive problems and is also an immune booster.  Just add a small pinch of ginger powder to the feed or feed it whole or grind it. 

4. Sick chickens with sores

Sick chickens with sores, blisters or closed eyesIt’s most likely fowl pox disease which is caused by mosquito bites. To treat, use Aliseryl, Nemovit, Sulfacox, Esb3. 

Sick chicken affected by fowl pox: You need to control biting insects such as mosquitoes, use this tip on how to protect your chickens from mosquitoes, you can also cover the birds with a mosquito net, spray the fowl runs with cislin, ensure grass around the fowl runs is well cut and breeding areas for mosquitos such as ponds and containers with stagnant water have been removed. 

Treatment: Ensure the fowl run is clean inside and outside as well. You can also crush and put aloe vera in drinking water and also apply the aloe vera juice on the affected areas.

5. General sickness

Inactive birds that seem cold, drooping wings but having normal droppingsTreat with any of the following: Aliseryl, Nemovit, Terranox, Tylocip or Virukill. You can also crush and put aloe vera in drinking water.

6. Worms in bird droppings or intestines

To treat worms, use any of these: Piperin, Piperazine, Tetramisole or Hygromix.

You can use the natural methods such as crushing and of these and putting in drinking water: chillies (mhiripiri), aloe vera (gavakava) and mutiti bark. Ensure you deworm your chickens at required intervals (broilers at 6 weeks and layers at 19 weeks). Repeat every 8 weeks. Skipping these routines can result in your birds getting infected by worms.

Dirty fowl runs provide a good breeding ground for worms therefore ensure you use clean bedding, allow ventilation to ensure bedding is kept dry.

7. Small sized birds with retarded growth

Your birds look so small despite their age?

They may need growth supplements (boosters) to increase appetite or immune system. Use Aminogrow, Introchick, Broiler Vitaboost or Ashboost. You can also crush and put aloe vera in drinking water. Ginger also helps with boosting appetite, helps in digestive problems and is also an immune booster. Just add a small pinch of ginger powder to the feed or feed it whole or grind it. 

8. Drop in eggs

Have you noticed a sudden drop in eggs being laid by your chickens?

Reasons vary from changes in feed type, diseases such as worms, stress maybe from weather changes, etc. If your birds do not eat properly, they may lose weight beyond the optimum weight of 1.5kg required for birds to lay eggs. Failure to eat can also result in a weakened immune system hence the birds will be prone to disease attacks.

Treatment: You may need to give egg production supplements (boosters) to stimulate egg production again. Use Breeder vitaboost, Nemovit, Introchick or Aminogrow. You can also crush and put aloe vera in drinking water. Increase light even up to 16hours a day as light triggers a hen’s pituitary glands to produce eggs.

9. Sick chickens due to heat stress

Are your birds showing signs of heat stress such as difficulties in breathing, panting, seizures or convulsions or lifting wings away from the body?

Treatment: Use Betasol-c, electrolytes and or aspirin. Provide birds with cool water with vitamin C. Also put stresspack in drinking water. Avoid overcrowding your birds as this may result in cannibalism and keep birds away from direct sunlight or heat. You can also crush and put aloe vera in drinking water.

10. Huge liver, water in belly of dead birds

Have you ever noticed when you slaughter a dead bird you find an enlarged liver and water-like jelly comes out as well?

This is ascites.

It’s a result of poor ventilation and temperature management during brooding stage as well as poor feed management. Ascites usually affect birds in the second or third week.

Signs of ascites can be high rate of panting even in the absence of heat stress, gurgling sound when breathing, liver enlargement and birds will be looking tired and often die on their bellies.

Treatment: To remedy this on the remaining flock, use Bedgen or Introchick. It may sometimes be best to slaughter the birds and cut on losses as this disease has no cure.

11. Poisoned birds

Crush charcoal into powder and put in drinking water. Charcoal helps to absorb all the toxins from the poison.

Did you find this article helpful? Leave a comment below or subscribe us on