Friday, 29 January 2010

The Issue of Chicken Diseases

Whether you are raising chickens as a farm animal or you are keeping them as pets, you will want to be sure they are properly taken care of. That means you need to ensure their health is maintained by proper care and feeding. And yes, it also means you must have your eyes wide open to notice common chicken diseases. It is most unfortunate when a chicken becomes grievously ill because an owner was not able to pinpoint the common symptoms of a chicken illness. Understanding the common signs and symptoms so as to identify chicken diseases can go a long way towards helping maintain the quality of life of your feathered friend.

Some of the most common chicken diseases are:

The best known of all chicken diseases is avian influenza or as it is most commonly known as: bird flu. This chicken illness is contracted by the bites of infected mosquitoes that transfer the germs that cause the condition. This is why it is best to keep chickens safe and secured from areas that are known to be breeding grounds for mosquitoes. This will help prevent the virus from spreading to chickens which will further prevent the condition from spreading to humans.

Fatty Liver Hemorrhagic Syndrome is a very unfortunate condition that directly affects the liver of the chicken. Needless to say, this is an extremely serious chicken illness that can lead to a fatality.

Squamous cell carcinoma while most people associate this cancer with humans, it is also possible for chickens to contract it as well.

Psittacosis is contracted via Chlamydia bacteria and can have a seriously debilitating effect on the chicken's immune system. If not caught in time and treated, this condition can also lead to a fatality.

Salmonella is possibly an even better known chicken illness than bird flu. This is one of the few chicken diseases that can be effectively treated when caught in time. That is why it is critical to look for signs of sickness in a chicken and take it to the vet as soon as possible.

These are only a small number of the scores of chicken diseases that poultry can contract. Understanding some of the common signs of illness in the chicken is helpful towards preventing the problem from getting worse. There are various telltale signs that would indicate whether or not a chicken is healthy. For example, if the chicken is showing signs of being rather lethargic, there may be a serious problem present. If the feathers on the chicken seem to have lost their smoothness or proper ruffled appearance, an underlying condition may be present. How is the chicken's eating and drinking habits? Those chickens that are deviating from their normal feeding behavior may be doing so for a reason.

In a way, you could sum up the potential for chicken diseases as being any behavior that is decidedly out of ordinary for the chicken. While it may not be sick, it certainly wouldn't hurt to take it to the vet to be sure or call your local USDA office and ask around for someone that could help you with identifying what is wrong with your chicken as you can lose your entire flocks if the disease is not cured.

Suzie O'Connor is the owner of which carries an extensive selection of custom made chicken houses and portable chicken coops. Custom made chicken coops and chicken houses mean happy, healthy chickens. The company is located in sunny Florida and can be reached at 866/579-1347 866/579-1347 .

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