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Ask Dr. Michael Salkin Your Own Question
Dr. Michael Salkin
Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian
Category: Bird Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 28949
Experience:  University of California at Davis graduate veterinarian with 45 years of experience
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I just noticed my 7.5-month-old buff orpington has diarrhea

Customer Question

I just noticed my 7.5-month-old buff orpington has green diarrhea and her wattles appear pale. Her flock member (we have 2 chickens) also appears to have pecked her ear sac (there is a small drop of dried blood on it), which I hear can happen if flock mates sense illness. She seemed fine a few a days ago, but I just started paying closer attention yesterday.
She has not started laying yet, either, so I wonder if any or all of this is connected. She is still eating and drinking as far as I know. Anyway, I am worried about her, especially since it is getting cold (below freezing at night). Any information would be greatly appreciated.
Thank you!
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Bird Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 1 year ago.

I understand your concerns. Birds like Rudy are always a challenge because her symptoms aren't pathognomonic (specifically indicative) of any one disorder. It's reasonable to treat both of your birds with both Wazine (piperazine) which addresses roundworms and Corid (amprolium) which addresses coccidia, however. You can find these products in your local feed store. Curiously, diarrheas are also seen with some respiratory diseases. Please let me know if you're seeing symptoms other than diarrhea and paleness (anemia?).

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hi. Thank you. Yes, she seems a bit lethargic. Normally she runs to greet me and now she she slowly makes her way. I just learned her diarrhea has been going on for at least the past few days. And the skin around one of her eyes is also whitish (as are here comb and wattles).She has already had several bouts of watery diarrhea in the past hour. Our other chicken seems fine, so really not sure what's happening.
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 1 year ago.

Thank you for the additional information. Her lethargy suggests that's she profoundly anemic. This can occur secondary to intestinal parasitism but also due to systemic infections which would need an avian vet (please see here: to clarify by means of a thorough physical exam and testing - bloodwork and cultures/PCR testing of Rudy's droppings. This can become admittedly costly and so I do understand that you have to consider Rudy's value to your operation. Please continue our conversation if you wish.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
She is still eating and drinking water. However, something is obviously wrong. I consider her a pet, so I am willing to consult with a local avian vet and have her tested, treated, etc.
thank you for the information.
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 1 year ago.

Wonderful, Lara! I can't set a follow-up in this venue and so would appreciate your returning to our conversation with an update - even after rating - at a time of your choosing.