General information

Diseases of domestic laying hens in winter

Author: Hen Ryaba

Good afternoon, dear poultry farmers! Let's talk about the diseases of laying hens in winter, their symptoms and treatment in our material. The benefits and ease of caring for a regular hen increases the number of livestock contained in numerous households every day. Not fastidiousness of chickens to the conditions of detention and feed, a long-proven and well-known fact.

But it is precisely the massiveness and unpretentiousness of the bird that allows some farms and private poultry houses to violate all conceivable rules of feeding and housing. Calling not only the loss of their own livestock, but also wider, massive outbreaks of epidemics. And, of course, the decisive factor directly influencing the quality of the content of hens is a long and cold winter.


It is a fairly common infectious disease that can quickly infect the entire population of laying hens. Typically, outbreaks in laying hens occur with the arrival of the cold season. High humidity and low temperature in the chicken coop create comfortable conditions for the virus.

Being transmitted by airborne droplets, the virus multiplies in the mucous membrane of the respiratory organs and the cloaca of the chicken, causing irritation, swelling and inflammation.

Symptoms of laryngotracheitis:

  • the birds become sedentary, sitting sluggish and closing their eyes,
  • the breathing of the hen becomes noisy, there is a rattling, wheezing,
  • egg production is falling,
  • respiratory mucosa is inflamed,
  • the area of ​​the beak and the eye acquire a blue tint,
  • conjunctivitis begins.

Infectious laryngotracheitis is treatable. Tromexin copes quite well with it. On the first day, 2 g is used, and in the following days 1 g per liter of water. The drug should be given full recovery of the diseased bird, subsequently vaccinating the entire population.


Bronchopneumonia in the hens can begin as an independent disease or be a consequence of a cold and is inflammation of the bird's bronchi.

Signs of bronchopneumonia in laying hens are:

  • apathy and lethargy of the bird,
  • heavy, noisy breathing with rattling and wheezing,
  • cough,
  • runny nose with persistent mucus that dries out, blocks breathing even more,
  • possible occurrence of conjunctivitis,
  • complete refusal to eat.

Often sick bronchopneumonia bird spends all day lying, not paying attention to what is happening around. Such chickens are subject to complete isolation from the rest of the population. Inflammation of the bronchi is an unpleasant, but not the most serious disease. Most poultry houses defeat the disease quite efficiently and without loss of livestock.

Treatment of diseases of bronchopneumonia in layers:

  • Well clean the chicken coop and spray Ashpieptol.
  • After coordinating the dosage with the veterinarian, the bird is given Norfloxacin, Terramycin, or Penicillin.
  • Add to the feed vitamin and mineral supplements, nettle decoction.
  • Good help alcohol tincture of ginseng, a mixture of mummy (1 gram) with honey (20 grams).

The main prevention against the disease is to maintain the optimum humidity and comfortable temperature conditions in the hen house.

Frostbite laying hens in winter

Long stay of the hens in the cold can lead to frostbite. The first thing affected paws, comb and earrings. Mild frostbite causes blanching and later blueing of the affected areas. More severe cases cause impaired blood supply, the affected tissues turn black and die.

Note: Grinding and treating the affected areas with petroleum jelly or goose fat helps reduce the effects of frostbite on birds.

Important! It is possible to let out on laying hens in the winter in sunny, not frosty day. The bird should not be on the street for more than two hours.

Chicken typhoid or white diarrhea, a common infectious disease affecting the intestines of a laying hen in winter. The incubation period of this disease of laying hens in the winter lasts from 1 to 5 days.

Symptoms of the disease pullorosis:

  • Layers refuse food.
  • They become weak and sedentary.
  • There is an increase in body temperature up to 44 ° C.
  • The bird suffers from liquid diarrhea with a pronounced whitish bloom.

Infection with pullorosis occurs through airborne droplets through food. In the litter of a sick bird, the pathogen of chicken typhoid - Salmonella pullorum, retains its activity for several months.

Treatment of pullorosis in laying hens:

  • isolate a sick bird from a healthy population,
  • conduct a weekly course of treatment with sulfa drugs, at the rate of half a gram per layer.

Also in the fight against the disease helps tetracycline, biomitsin, furazolidone. If antibiotics do not help, all infected birds are destroyed by conducting complete disinfection of the chicken coop.

Note! A chick hatching from eggs laid by infected chicken is also a carrier of pullorosis and in most cases it falls ill immediately after birth.


A disease affecting all poultry can also be dangerous for humans. In chickens and young individuals, it takes place in a very acute stage. In adult layers, it takes on a chronic form.

Pathological process caused by E. coli, the main impact on the lungs of birds. When moving sick clearly loud, hoarse breathing.

Symptoms of colibacillosis in layers:

  • weakness, lethargy and apathy of the sick bird,
  • increased body temperature
  • diarrhea and loss of appetite
  • shortness of breath
  • the bird always tries to crouch
  • strong, constant thirst, chickens begin to drink much more water.

Important! In the chronic stage in adults, the symptoms of the disease become blurred and only an experienced veterinarian can diagnose colibacillosis.

The following drugs help cure the disease:

The dosage prescribed by the veterinarian is mixed with feed. Having cured the bird, it is necessary to thoroughly clean and sanitize the coop.


Transmitted by the bacterium Salmonella through droppings, feed, eggs, the disease affects the internal organs of the chicken. The disease is dangerous to humans, getting into the body after eating chicken eggs from an infected layer. Salmonella bacteria die from heat treatment.

Symptoms of the disease:

  • loss of appetite, weakness and apathy,
  • labored breathing,
  • tearing and discharge of pus from the eyes,
  • foamy feces,
  • lameness, uncertain walk,
  • swelling and inflammation of the cloaca, peritoneum.

In the last stage of salmonellosis, the chicken stops walking and lies on its back or side.

Treatment of diseased layers is carried out using:

  • Sulfanilamide,
  • Biomycin,
  • Chloramphenicol,
  • Tetracycline,
  • Chlortetracycline.

The coop must be disinfected. Healthy layers are removed from sick stock, otpaivaya water with the addition of chloramphenicol or potassium permanganate.

Diseases developing from malnutrition

Normal nutrition is the key to good and excellent health not only in humans. Any animal or bird also needs a complete diet. And the laying hens are also very sensitive to malnutrition. It is worth considering what are the winter diseases in laying hens associated with malnutrition, as well as their treatment.


Disease gastroenteritis causes:

  • Poor balance in the diet.
  • Poor food, lack of fresh food, vitamins.
  • Poor living conditions, poor hygiene in the hen house.

The main impact of the disease is on the digestive system of the layer, irritating and inflaming the mucous membranes.

Signs of gastroenteritis:

  • depression and lethargy unhealthy look,
  • refusal to eat, reduced egg production,
  • ruffled plumage
  • diarrhea.

To make the correct diagnosis, due to the similarity of symptoms with other diseases, can only an experienced poultry house or a veterinarian.

Important! Only by eliminating the possibility of an infectious disease of laying hens in winter, it is worthwhile to start treating gastroenteritis.

Therapy is to improve the quality of food, eliminating distortions in the diet. To get rid of chickens from diarrhea in winter, a solution of potassium iodide disinfecting the digestive system of the hen is given.


The disease begins to develop from a lack of pills in the diet of vitamins and minerals, succulent feed. The problem is mainly susceptible to the birds contained in cages, as well as not receiving a balanced feed in the winter season.

Signs of beriberi:

  • weight loss and plumage
  • lethargy and weakness
  • bowel disorder and malfunction
  • conjunctivitis,
  • swelling of joints
  • pale color comb and earrings.

With neglected diseases, irreversible changes occur in the chicken's body and it can be quite difficult to completely cure it. In other cases, poultry is quickly helped by the introduction of balanced mash, vitamin and mineral supplements, and succulent feeds into the diet. In winter, laying hens should be given hay, coquina and chalk.

Atonia goiter

Feeding the hens with low-grade, dry food can lead to sedimentation and delay in the goiter. Overflow prevents further passage of food. Clogged, it becomes significantly larger and makes it difficult for the bird to breathe. Complicated cases usually end in death.

Note! The disease is detected by sagging, hardened, enlarged goiter.

The disease is treated quite easily. After the introduction of 40 g of vegetable oil in the goiter, a light massage of the hardened feed is done. After a while, the goiter can be cleaned on its own and drink the chicken with a weak solution of potassium permanganate.


The disease that causes inflammation of the layer of the oviduct is provoked by poor and unbalanced feeds. Most poultry houses are faced with this disease in chickens in the winter and when the hens are kept in cages. Lack of treatment ends with complete loss of the oviduct.

Signs of salpingitis:

  • reduced egg production, often eggs are without shell,
  • feeling unwell, lethargy,
  • palpation felt bloated abdomen,
  • the chicken moves, dragging its feet.

When the first symptoms occur, treatment should begin immediately. Vaseline is introduced into the cloaca of the hen. After receiving advice from a veterinarian, antibiotics are used, and synestrol injections are given. At this stage it is very important to vitaminize, balance the nutrition of the hen. In the diet should be fresh food, shell rock, chalk.

If chickens have legs in winter and they often fall on them, then it is quite possible that this is arthritis. The disease affects the joints of the paws of the hens, reducing vital activity, which negatively affects egg production.

Laying hens fall to their feet

Vitamins for chickens and disease prevention

Vitaminized foods play a key role in disease prevention (Figure 7):

Figure 7. Vitaminized feed: legume greens, meat and bone meal and wheat bran

  • Vitamin A, which is found in legumes, cereals and legume-grass green feeds,
  • Vitamin B12, able to compensate for iron deficiency and is contained mainly in animal feed,
  • Vitamin D improves bone formation, and to assimilate it, you definitely need birds in the sunlight,
  • Vitamins B1 and B2 have a beneficial effect on the nervous system, and the source of these vitamins are bran, greens, yeast and dairy waste.

For feeding chickens and adult chickens in the spring and winter use special fortified concentrates, as well as vitamin and mineral supplements.

Vitamins for layers in winter

In winter, it is especially important to give the hens food rich in vitamins. This will not only positively affect egg production, but also help prevent the development of diseases.

Asvitamins in wintergive out such feed:

  • Hay of clover and nettle. Dried grass is tied up in bunches and hung in a hen house so that birds can freely peck it.
  • Germinated grain is a valuable source of vitamins, and regular delivery of such feed has a beneficial effect on egg production and egg quality.
  • Boiled potatoes, pumpkins and beets support immunity and serve as an excellent means of preventing diseases.
  • Bone meal, sunflower meal cake, fodder yeast and wheat bran contain a lot of vitamin D, so they are surely introduced into the wet mash in winter.

Also in winter, birds are given special fortified premixes of industrial production.


In winter, chickens most often suffer from colds. The reason is simple: an insufficiently insulated coop. Outside there are severe frosts, and the lack of heating in the room causes a decrease in the overall temperature and an increase in humidity. All this has a very negative impact on the general condition of the bird.

In winter, chickens most often suffer from colds.

The first symptoms of a cold are:

As the condition worsens, it may appear:

Chickens become lethargic, poorly eaten.

With a cold, the chicken does not eat well, sneezes, its beak is constantly open.

A clear sign that the bird is sick - always open beak. The nasal mucosa swells, so the chicken has to breathe through the mouth. Most often, young people suffer from colds. And if you do not take measures, the hen dies.

When identifying a sick individual, it is urgently necessary to isolate it. Then you can avoid the development of the epidemic, if the disease is infectious in nature.

For colds it is recommended to use the drug Ashpieptol. It is designed to handle the room - it is best to do this at night.

It is prepared according to the following scheme:

The walls of the coop are treated with a mixture of bleach and water.

  • soda ash (175 grams) must be dissolved in boiling water (1.3 liters),
  • dilute the bleach (125 grams) with warm water (3.5 liters),
  • combine both the composition and mix,
  • then pour an equal volume of pure water into the mixture.

And spray the resulting product in the hen house. This is best done with a garden sprayer.

It is desirable to add nettle decoction to drinking water. Of the antibiotics, Terramycin, Ampicillin or Norfloxacin may be prescribed. If the hens were prescribed drugs from this category, the slaughter of poultry for meat can be carried out two weeks after the completion of the course of treatment.

Simple measures will help to avoid colds:

  • the coop needs to be warmed. To heat the room, you can use the "stove". A thick layer of bedding is put on the floor, such as hay or sawdust,
  • feed and water should be warm
  • need to perform regular disinfection of the room.

It is desirable to keep adult layers and young animals in different rooms.


In winter, walking chickens is prohibited, since the risk of frostbite by birds is high.

Paws, scallops, earlobes and earrings are mainly affected:

  • With a mild frostbite, the affected parts first turn pale, and a little later turn blue.
  • In severe cases, blood circulation is disturbed, which is further accompanied by blackening and even death of damaged tissues.
In winter, hens often freeze scallops and earrings.

Treatment for signs of frostbite should begin immediately:

  • The affected area must be well rubbed and treated with iodine. Then a mixture of goose fat (10 parts) and turpentine (1 part) is used.
  • If there is nothing, then you can take the usual petroleum jelly.

To prevent frostbite can be as follows:

  • not to let the birds out of the coop go for walks in extreme cold,
  • lubricate the paws and crests of chickens with petroleum jelly or goose fat,
  • put a heater in the room.
In extreme cold it is recommended to include a heater in the hen house.

Pasteurellosis (cholera)

In most cases, birds are exposed to infection of two to three months of age. If the chickens of the disease passes quickly and without consequences, then the adults may develop serious consequences.

Signs of pasteurellosis are as follows:

One of the symptoms of pasteurellosis is ruffled feathers.

  • lethargy,
  • strong thirst
  • ruffled plumage
  • blue scallop and earrings
  • loose stools
  • high body temperature,
  • discharge of mucus from the nose and beak.

At the same time the bird moves a little and prefers to be in one place.

Treatment should begin immediately after the detection of the disease. In this case, a solution of tetracycline or norsulfazole (2% solution of any drug) is used, which is added to the feed.

Pathology is typical for young and chickens. The disease manifests itself in the form of formation of spots on the skin - later they are transformed into growths - brown. The main place of appearance is the head and the area of ​​the cloaca. As the condition worsens, growths take over new areas of the body.

In some cases, growths are fixed on the surface of the oral mucosa. In this case, the chicken breathes heavily through the constantly open mouth.

When smallpox in chickens on the head appear brown growths.

The treatment comes down to the following procedures:

  • inflamed areas need to be treated with natural fat or glycerin,
  • in case of inflammation of the mucous membrane, the surface is treated with chloramine (5% solution) or with a mixture of iodine and glycerin (1%),
  • irrigation mucous decoction of chamomile.

Since the bird suffers from intense thirst, it is necessary to provide constant access to clean water.

Non-contagious diseases

The reason for the "winter" diseases of laying hens can be incorrectly chosen feed.

Some non-communicable diseases can be the result of improper feeding.

Quite often birds suffer from:

Diseases due to malnutrition

In winter, diseases in chickens can occur not only because of the cold weather, but also as a result of a lack of vitamins and microminerals.

Incorrect diet can trigger the development of:

With arthritis, both internal organs and paws are damaged. The disease develops in birds living on dirty and wet bedding.

With arthritis, the joints swell up, become hot to the touch.

Typical signs of arthritis:

  • The limp of a bird. Chicken can not stand on the affected paw.
  • The inflamed joint is enlarged and swollen, warm when touched.

Treatment is carried out with antibiotics and antiviral drugs. Ampicillin, Polimexin and Sulfadimetoksin can be appointed. Means can be added to feed or enter intramuscularly.

Recommendations and advice to farmers and breeders

Professional chickens farmers offer the following tips:

  • birds should be inspected regularly, and their treatment should be started immediately when a disease is detected,
  • the hen house needs to be disinfected periodically.

To prevent the disease will help vaccination of chickens in accordance with the adopted schedule.

Catarrhal diseases

In winter, chickens most often get sick from colds. Outside there are low frosts, the house is much colder than usual, and even the humidity rises, drafts are walking - all this leads to the fact that chickens have a cold. The main symptoms of colds chickens are coughing and sneezing. With the development of the disease, edema of the respiratory system, difficulty in breathing, shortness of breath may occur. The behavior of sick birds also changes - they become lethargic, their beak is almost always open (because they breathe through their mouths). Young cattle suffer most from colds.

Poultry prone to colds.

The primary task that the owner faces is to isolate sick birds from healthy ones and to start treatment sooner. The disease Ashpieptol helps to prevent colds, which is sprayed indoors at night. Preparing this tool is easy: take a solution of soda ash (175 g), add 1-1.5 liters of boiling water and 125 g of bleach diluted in 3.5 liters of water. This mixture must be diluted with water in equal proportions and sprayed in the hen house with a sprayer.

To make the treatment process faster, you can add nettle broth to chickens in water. If the vet prescribed antibiotic treatment, it will be possible to kill chickens for meat no sooner than 2 weeks after the end of the course of treatment. Of the antibiotics, terramycin, ampicillin or norfloxacin are commonly used.

To prevent colds from chickens, it is necessary to take measures to supplement the warming of the chicken coop before winter - to fill up the cracks, lay a layer of hay on the floor, put a stove or heater. Feed in winter should be served slightly warmed up. In addition, it is necessary to regularly disinfect the house, especially carefully cleaning the feeders and drinkers. Chickens and adults need to be kept separate.

Treatment of rhinitis in chickens, sequence of actions

Infectious diseases

In the cold season, the avian organism weakens and becomes more susceptible to all sorts of infectious diseases. Especially often chickens get sick if you continue to feed them the same way as during the warmer months. The most common infectious diseases of chickens are colibacteriosis, pasteurellosis, smallpox and salmonellosis.