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close this bookEthnoveterinary Medicine in Asia - Poultry (IIRR, 1994, 40 p.)
View the document(introduction...)
View the documentCollaborating organizations
View the documentParticipants and workshop staff
View the documentHow to use this manual
View the documentReduced appetite
View the documentCoughs and colds
View the documentDiarrhea
View the documentIntestinal worms
View the documentTicks, lice and mites
View the documentFungal diseases
View the documentInfectious diseases
View the documentWounds
View the documentHousing
View the documentHeat stress
View the documentFeeding
View the documentCalcium deficiency

Coughs and colds


· Sneezing.
· Discharge from the nose.
· Watery eves.
· Lack of appetite.
· Feed sticking to beak
· Ruffled feathers.


Coughs and colds often occur during sudden changes of weather and in the wet season.

Coughs and colds in poultry can be symptoms of many different diseases, including fowl plague, Newcastle disease and coryza. These diseases can be spread by air, drinking water and feed. There is no cure for some of them; the treatments below will help ease the symptoms only.

If the birds have colds with green diarrhea and fits or convulsions and, if many birds die, the problem may be Newcastle disease. There is no cure for this. You can prevent it with a cheap and effective vaccination. See the section on Infectious diseases, page 21.

If the birds have swollen faces, the disease may be coryza. Use one of the remedies made from Heliotropium indicum or Spondias pinnate below.


· Proper hygiene-such as clean water and equipment.
· Good feeding.
· Avoid overcrowding.
· Protect the birds from the weather.
· Vaccinate the birds against Newcastle disease and other diseases.

Provide shelter from the weather.

· Mix ½ teaspoon of turmeric rhizome powder in every liter of drinking water. Used also for humans. (India)


In administering any drug orally, keep the bird's head level (See Application of Herbal Medicine in General Information). Otherwise, the medicine may go into the bird's lungs.

· Boil 1 part mature leaves of Heliotropium indicum or young leaves of Spondias pinnata in 2 parts of clean water for 5-10 minutes. Give the decoction to the birds through the mouth, using a dropper, 2-3 times a day until the symptoms disappear. Use 3-5 ml (½ to 1 teaspoon) of decoction per kilogram of bodyweight. This treatment is effective for coryza.

(Leyte, Philippines. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6)

· Crush garlic cloves and mix them with the feed. Use 1 clove for each bird per day to prevent and cure diseases. (Throughout India. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6)

· Soak 10 g of seeds of Trigonella foenum-graecum (fenugreek) in 1 liter of boiling water. Allow to cool. Give as the only source of drinking water until symptoms disappear. (Parts of India. 1, 2)

· Chop ¼ onion per bird and feed it to the chickens each day. This is a common practice in India to prevent and cure poultry diseases. (India, 1, 2, 3, 4)

· Boil a handful of basil (Ocimum sanctum) leaves in 1 liter of water until only half of the water remains. Mix this in the drinking water. The leaves can also be chopped and mixed with the feed.

(Parts of India. 1, 2, 4)

· Pound 10 g of fresh ginger rhizome, squeeze out the juice and mix the juice with 250 ml of water and 10 g of brown sugar. The mixture is enough for 10 birds. Give as drinking water every day. (India. 1, 2, 3, 4)

· Take a whole plant of Andrographis paniculata. Boil with 2 liters of water till 1 liter is left. Soak 2 handfuls of uncooked milled rice in this water overnight. Feed to chicken next morning mixed with other feed. This prevents disease in unaffected flocks.