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infectious laryngotracheitis virus

GITTarzannGITTarzann Junior Member
edited February 2007 in Poultry Health and Welfare
Hello all.

New to posting here, but have lurked a little bit, but I have a problem and need some help.

I just had one of my cockerels autopsied yesterday by UC Davis animal health lab, and some of the results are back.

Turns out it has this virus.

I am looking for suggestions on what to do.

I have nice quality showbirds, that have cost me quite a bit to get going.

I think I contracted the virus at a poultry show here 2 years ago.

I purchased 2 birds from a very reputable breeder there at the show sale room, and a few days to a week later (I can't really remember how long it was) my newest birds came down with a cough...and a little while later most of my flock had it. I thought it was just a cold of some type.

It has been an up and down thing, where occasionnally I will lose a bird here and there..sometimes not knowing for sure if it is from the ILTV ?

I had tried Terramycin when they were sick and it seemed to help, but maybe it was my imagination.

I finally just took a leap and had one of my nice cockerels in and had him sacrificed to be autopsied.

So can anyone here help...maybe someone who has dealt with the same thing ?

Thanks in advance !

Comments

  • crazychickcrazychick Senior Member
    edited February 2007
    ILT is a pretty nasty virus- I'm not convinced that your birds have it, unless they showed far more severe symptoms than just a cough... It starts out with one bird getting sick- coughing (a long drawn out cough), and sometimes you'll see blood being expelled after the bird shakes its head. As the disease progresses, the bird must stretch their neck to inhale and exhale, making a characteristic "Caaawww" sound. As the disease runs through the flock, the virus gains virulence. often the first couple of birds do not die but the more birds that get it, the higher the death rate. It is not typically a disease the appears and disappears- if a bird has had ILT, they are OFTEN immune for life (not necessarily - kind of like chicken pox in humans). Recovered birds can be carriers of the disease for life, as well- shedding the virus most often under times of stress when their own immune systems are impaired. Because your flock has had it, likely only new birds (through hatching yourself or purchasing) will contract it. Older birds are more susceptible- chicks and very young birds do not seem to be as strongly affected, but get immunity just the same. Upon autopsy, what did the findings say? Did they isolate the virus and see blood and mucous in the trachea? There are other diseases that cause coughing and respiratory symptoms, with a much lower death rate (if any) that DO respond to antibiotics (tetracycline being one of the ones effective against Coryza and/or Chronic respiratory disease). I'm sorry you had to sacrifice one of your birds, though- sad to have to do that... What symptoms did he have before he was euthanized?

    Laura
  • GITTarzannGITTarzann Junior Member
    edited February 2007
    My birds showed all the signs of mild ILTV.

    including the stretching neck and making the Cawww sound, although not all of them do it.

    The autopsy report is as follows



    CAHFS #1 ACCESSION#: F0700350
    01/31/07 PAGE: 2 of 3
    G R O S S P A T H O L O G Y
    One 8-month-old male Brahma chicken was submitted live for examination.
    There were no clinical signs. There was slight tracheal mucus, and the air
    sacs were slightly thickened and opaque. Mild numbers of tapeworms were seen
    in the intestines. There were no other significant findings.
    V I R O L O G Y
    AVIAN INFECTIOUS LARYNGOTRACHEITIS - FA
    Specimen Information
    ID Type
    TRACHEA TISSUE-FROZEN Pending
    CONJUNTIVA TISSUE-FROZEN Pending
    VIRUS ISOLATION - AVIAN
    Specimen Information
    ID Type
    F3 CH TRACHEA/LUNG- Pending
    F6 CH CECAL TONSIL Pending
    P A R A S I T O L O G Y
    *** FECAL EXAM - DIRECT WET SMEAR
    Specimen Information Results
    ID Type
    BRAHMA INTESTINE-SCR No ova, oocysts, flagellates seen
    B I O T E C H
    INFLUENZA RRT-PCR
    Specimen Information
    ID Type
    BRAHMA PHARYNX Pending
    BRAHMA CLOACAL Pending
    END RRT-PCR
    Specimen Information
    ID Type
    BRAHMA PHARYNX Pending
    BRAHMA CLOACAL Pending

    CAHFS #1 ACCESSION#: F0700350
    01/31/07 PAGE: 3 of 3
    C L I N I C A L H I S T O R Y
    Illness started last winter. This bird has respiratory problems; treated
    with terramycin. Purchased in February last year. Started with respiratory
    signs at that time. Some got sick then died. Some diarrhea. Feeding lay
    crumble and scratch. Treatments: Terramycin for 4 days.
    S P E C I M E N S U M M A R Y
    Specimen Type Breed ID Age Sex Qty
    CARCASS BRAHMA BRAHMA 8 MONTHS MALE 1
  • crazychickcrazychick Senior Member
    edited February 2007
    Hmm... okay- you were lucky, then, and got a lentogenic form of it! Good! Hopefully that means that your flock SHOULD be immune, for the most part. There is a vaccine available- I have some at my barn and I'll look up the manufacturer of it. I got mine at a hatchery but it is difficult to find now. The vaccine can be given in the face of an outbreak - it takes 10 days post-vaccination to reach immunity. Birds need to be vaccinated (it's an eye drop vaccine and is only good for an hour or so after mixing up- doses 1000 and isn't expensive) - and then a booster is given I believe (from memory) 2 weeks later. Double check that with a vet. A yearly booster should be given and also to any new birds that you bring into the flock. Also, if you sell birds - even birds that have never shown clinical signs (including ANY birds that you have vaccinated) you NEED to tell the person you're selling to that your birds have been vaccinated for ILT. A Vaccinated bird can pass on ILT to an unvaccinated flock - that is how you got it (from a poultry show - your birds picked it up from a vaccinated bird, most likely) and that's how I got it in my flock, years ago. I purchased birds from a person who shows, not realizing they were vaccinated. He never told me that they were and my entire flock ended up getting sick, with a highly virulent strain of ILT. Lost about half my birds. Never bought from that breeder again, needless to say. All he had to do was to tell me about the vaccinated birds and I would have saved myself so much grief, not to mention about 15 backyard pets.

    In an outbreak, as well, isolate the sick birds immediately- preferably in a different building. I put mine in my downstairs bathroom! I got ILT again, about 5 years after the first outbreak, as I had not vaccinated for a long time and didn't have many birds from the original flock left. Silly me... lesson learned. Anyway, I put them in a very warm room (about 80F) and ran the shower for a few minutes to humidify the air. I did this to hopefully help loosen up the mucous in their tracheas. I also gave the sick birds immune boosters - echinecea, bee propolis-thyme, cold Fx (available in Canada only, I think...), Dolisos and some homeopathic anti inflammatories, including homeopuil. Ask your vet about metacam, a drug that I didn't know about last time I had this in my flock - it's a pain killer/anti inflammatory that might help bring down inflammation in the trachea. I, however, am not sure about the implications of giving a bird an NSAID anti inflammatory to combat tracheal inflammation. Again, ask your vet (preferably an avian or poultry vet). Usually, if the sick bird survives the first 48 hours, they will often recover- but again, your birds seem to have a lentogenic strain. I believe it is still true of any strain, though, that the more birds it goes through, the stronger and more virulent the virus becomes... so best to separate the sick ones and vaccinate the rest and hopefully you have no more problems in the future. Hold off showing and selling until you have the disease under control, as I'm sure you well know... Brahmas are one of my favourite breeds - don't have any right now, but I've had them in the past and can't wait to get some more!

    Good luck with your flock - sorry that you've had so much stress with them- if you can survive ILT, you can get through most other problems! That's what I've found...

    Laura
  • GITTarzannGITTarzann Junior Member
    edited February 2007
    Preliminary Ac***ulative Report #2 - Printed: 02/02/07
    (This report supersedes all previous reports for this accession)


    Date Received: 01/31/07
    1 Specimens submitted: Live 8-month-old chicken
    Approved by: , DVM MPVM
    L A B O R A T O R Y F I N D I N G S / D I A G N O S I S
    1. Mycoplasma synoviae infection, seropositive.
    2. Infectious bronchitis, seropositive.
    3. Tapeworm infestation, mild, small intestines.
    A C C E S S I O N S U M M A R Y
    01-31-07: Preliminary Report 1. Unfortunately, there were no gross lesions
    in this bird to explain the respiratory signs seen in the flock. There were
    only a few tapeworms seen though they may be causing the diarrhea.
    Bacteriology, biotechnology, histopathology, immunology and virology in
    progress.
    *** 02-02-07: Preliminary Report 2. The serum of this bird is positive for
    antibodies to infectious bronchitis (IB) and Mycoplasma synoviae (MS). Both
    of these disease agents cause respiratory disease. IB is caused by a virus
    which is not treatable, but is only prevented by vaccination. MS is a
    bacteria and is usually susceptible to antibiotics such as terramycin. No
    significant bacteria were isolated, and the bird was negative for exotic


    02/02/07 PAGE: 2 of 5
    Newcastle disease and avian influenza (i.e., bird flu). Cultures for
    mycoplasma and viruses are in progress.
    G R O S S P A T H O L O G Y
    One 8-month-old male Brahma chicken was submitted live for examination.
    There were no clinical signs. There was slight tracheal mucus, and the air
    sacs were slightly thickened and opaque. Mild numbers of tapeworms were seen
    in the intestines. There were no other significant findings.
    H I S T O P A T H O L O G Y
    Sections of heart, trachea, lung, air sacs, liver, kidney, spleen, bursa of
    Fabricius, pancreas, esophagus, proventriculus, ventriculus, intestines and
    brain were examined.
    TRACHEA: moderate mononuclear inflammatory cell infiltration, moderate
    lymphofollicular aggregates, incomplete to complete deciliation.
    LUNG: moderate lymphofollicular aggregates within bronchi, multifocal
    scattered clear particulate matter.
    INTESTINES: mild increase in cellularity in lamina propria.
    All other tissues were unremarkable.
    I M M U N O L O G Y
    *** INFECTIOUS BURSAL DISEASE - ELISA
    Specimen Information Results
    ID Type
    CH/ SERA Titer Grp 1
    *** AVIAN INFLUENZA ELISA
    Specimen Information Results
    ID Type
    CH/ SERA Neg
    *** M.SYNOVIAE TURKEY/CHICKEN ELISA
    Specimen Information Results
    ID Type
    CH/ SERA Titer Grp 8
    *** M.GALLISEPTI*** TURKEY/CHICKEN ELISA
    Specimen Information Results
    ID Type
    CH/ SERA Titer Grp 0


    02/02/07 PAGE: 3 of 5
    *** AVIAN INFECTIOUS BRONCHITIS - ELISA
    Specimen Information Results
    ID Type
    CH/ SERA Titer Grp 8
    *** M. GALLISEPTI*** - PLATE AGGLUTINATION (MG PLATE))
    Specimen Information Results
    ID Type
    CH/ SERA Positive
    *** MYCOPLASMA GALLISEPTI*** - HI
    Specimen Information Results
    ID Type
    CH/ SERA Neg@1:20
    *** M. SYNOVIAE - PLATE AGGLUTINATION (MS-PLATE)
    Specimen Information Results
    ID Type
    CH/ SERA Positive
    *** MYCOPLASMA SYNOVIAE - HI
    Specimen Information Results
    ID Type
    CH/ SERA 1:640
    *** NEWCASTLE DISEASE VIRUS-CHICKEN-ELISA-(PMV 1)
    Specimen Information Results
    ID Type
    CH/ SERA Titer Grp 1
    V I R O L O G Y
    *** AVIAN INFECTIOUS LARYNGOTRACHEITIS - FA
    Specimen Information Results
    ID Type
    TRACHEA TISSUE-FROZEN Neg
    CONJUNTIVA TISSUE-FROZEN Neg
    VIRUS ISOLATION - AVIAN
    Specimen Information
    ID Type
    F3 CH TRACHEA/LUNG- Pending
    F6 CH CECAL TONSIL Pending
    P A R A S I T O L O G Y
    FECAL EXAM - DIRECT WET SMEAR
    Specimen Information Results
    ID Type
    BRAHMA INTESTINE-SCR No ova, oocysts, flagellates seen



    02/02/07 PAGE: 4 of 5
    B A C T E R I O L O G Y
    *** BACTERIAL AEROBIC CULTURE
    Specimen Information Results
    ID Type
    BRAHMA LIVER No growth - In 48 Hrs.
    BRAHMA AIR SAC No growth - In 48 Hrs.
    BRAHMA TRACHEA Mixed flora Lge#
    DIAGNOSTIC MYCOPLASMA CULTURE
    Specimen Information
    ID Type
    BRAHMA AIR SAC Pending
    BRAHMA TRACHEA Pending
    *** SALMONELLA CULTURE - AVIAN
    Specimen Information Results
    ID Type
    BRAHMA INTESTINE No Salmonella sp. detected
    B I O T E C H
    *** INFLUENZA RRT-PCR
    Specimen Information Results
    ID Type
    BRAHMA PHARYNX Negative
    BRAHMA CLOACAL Negative
    *** END RRT-PCR
    Specimen Information Results
    ID Type
    BRAHMA PHARYNX Neg
    BRAHMA CLOACAL Neg
    C L I N I C A L H I S T O R Y
    Illness started last winter. This bird has respiratory problems; treated
    with terramycin. Purchased in February last year. Started with respiratory
    signs at that time. Some got sick then died. Some diarrhea. Feeding lay
    crumble and scratch. Treatments: Terramycin for 4 days.
    C O N T A C T L O G S U M M A R Y
    Report Date Reported
    Preliminary 1 01/31/07-


    02/02/07 PAGE: 5 of 5
    S P E C I M E N S U M M A R Y
    Specimen Type Breed ID Age Sex Qty
    CARCASS BRAHMA BRAHMA 8 MONTHS MALE 1
  • crazychickcrazychick Senior Member
    edited February 2007
    Hi,

    Just had a quick glance at the PM results and it looks like your bird has been diagnosed with mycoplasma gallisetpi***, which is the same thing as Chronic respiratory disease (also called mycoplasmosis or CRD). Tetracycline is moderately effective against this disease, but you must dose for longer than a few days- 7 days minimum and 10 days if possible (during an outbreak). A better drug is Tylan (comes in injectable and water soluble powder). Gallimycin works well, too, as does baytril (injectable). Lincospectin is pretty good, and all the tetracycline relatives (neoxytet, terramycin, oxytet etc) work pretty good, but not as well as the tylan.

    CRD/Mycoplasma has the following symptoms - only a few symptoms may show up, or in severe cases, all the symptoms:

    - Bubbly or runny eyes
    - swelling around eyes and sinuses
    - cough (head shake and aaaaawwww sound sometimes accompanies if there is a lot of swelling or gunk in throat)
    - sneezing
    - rattling when breathing, especially evident when they are roosting at night
    - gungy or gooey feathers, especially under wing, on wing and where they tuck their head to roost at night- this is from them rubbing their faces on their feathers to clear discharge from their nostrils and eyes
    - lethargy, possible loss of appetite
    - ruffled feathers
    - fever (hot comb, hot under wings, hot face)

    Treat with the above mentioned antibiotics and, if you have an acutely ill bird, also give 5 aspirin per gallon of water to help with fever. I also put a dab of "vicks" vapo-rub on their comb to help them breathe a bit better.

    Hope this helps- glad it doesn't look like you have ILT in your flock- that is a super bad disease to have to deal with! CRD is not so bad and is amongst one of the most common diseases in any backyard chicken flock.

    Hope your flock is well,

    Laura
  • GITTarzannGITTarzann Junior Member
    edited February 2007
    I am glad that my birds dont have ILT !!

    The diagnosis so far is Infectious Bronchitis, and MG.

    I am not quite sure how to treat the IB really, and if I am going to have an ongoing problem like I would with ILT or not ?
  • crazychickcrazychick Senior Member
    edited February 2007
    Hi,

    Here's some info (from the Poultry site) in Infectious Bronchitis that might interest you. http://www.thepoultrysite.com/diseaseinfo/78/infectious-bronchitis-ib Because it is viral, as you probably know, antibiotics won't cure it BUT due to common bacterial and mycoplasma secondary infections, treating with a broad spectrum antibiotic (such as the ones suggested in my previous message) will help the bird. If you can control the CRD, the IB will be easier to deal with. There are vaccines out there for IB but I don't know much about them (when they should be given and what strains are best for your area). IB affects younger birds more acutely than older birds, as well, so as your flock ages, it shouldn't be as bad (and older birds develop better immunity...). Keep sick birds separated and under a heat lamp. IB is not nearly as nasty as ILT (much much lower mortality) and if you do have an outbreak again, monitor birds, separate sick ones, put those that are sick on antibiotics (for secondary infections) and spray your coop daily with a disinfectant as the coronavirus that causes the disease is pretty easily killed by most any disinfectant. I like virkon, but it may not be available where you are.

    Hopefully you have limited or no deaths in the future from these respiratory diseases, but now that you have a definite diagnosis, you will be more prepared to deal with disease when it comes up.

    Laura
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