Fowl Cholera in Chickens – Symptoms, Causes, Treatment, and Prevention

Fowl Cholera in Chickens

Fowl Cholera is an acute infectious disease found in avian species including waterfowl, turkeys, and chickens, and is caused by the bacterium, Pasteurella multocida. Also known as avian cholera, this bacterial disease has been recognized for more than 200 years worldwide. Outbreaks have resulted in thousands of lives, especially during the winter months. Transmission of this disease is the intake of contaminated food or water and direct bird-to-bird contact. In acute cases, sudden death is a sign of disease and the mortality rate is high. On the other hand, symptoms of chronic cases include convulsions, severe respiratory disorders, fever, and swollen and edematous wattles and combs. Generally speaking, chickens over 6 weeks are more susceptible to this disease than the younger ones. The bacterium can easily be destroyed by disinfectants and environmental factors. However, it may persist during a longer stay in the soil.

Fowl Cholera Treatment

While antibiotics may reduce mortality, victims will also die once the medication stops. The preventive measure includes depopulation, disinfection of infected areas, making sure that the environment is always clean, and a good biosecurity program. In some cases, the mortality rate is reduced when sulfadimethoxine is being added to food or water. Dead bodies of infected chicken should be burn immediately to reduce the possibility of future outbreaks.


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