On February 20, 2015, an 8 month-old Speckled Sussex Hen developed a barking cough and was having difficulty breathing. The rest of the flock was not ill, and when the owner brought the hen indoors she noticed the symptoms improved but did not resolve in warm air. The owner consulted with our practice and a homeopathic remedy was selected that matched the hen's symptoms of illness. The owner was instructed to give 1 dose by mouth (dissolved in water, 1/2 ml per dose) every 2 hours until improvement was noted, and phone progress within 12 hours.
Within two hours of the second dose, the owner phoned to report that the hen's respiratory effort and coughing had significantly improved. Although she still wheezed a little when she breathed, she was now making normal chicken sounds and her energy and activity were higher. The owner was advised to monitor her symptoms and repeat the remedy only if the wheezing did not improve overnight or if her symptoms worsened. Two days later, the owner reported that the hen continued to rapidly improve. Her symptoms resolved without any more doses and she returned the hen to the flock outside.
Six months later in the spring of 2015 I was at the owner's home to provide health care for her dogs and she reported that the hen was doing great: the pictures shown here were taken that day. If you have backyard chickens and are interested in holistic care for your flock, please do not hesitate to contact me.
Lisa J Melling DVM CVH