Chickens usually walk through their day with their mouth closed.
They are not open-mouth breathers either, so it is certainly suspicious and concerning if you notice them opening their mouths quite frequently.
If you see your chickens opening their mouths and other concerning matters such as gasping for air, what does this actually mean?
Let’s find out.
4 Possible Reasons Why a Chicken Keeps Opening Their Mouth
Chickens do not open their mouths that much.
In fact, it is rare to see them opening their beaks wide unless they will eat or do some loud vocalizations.
This situation might also become more serious if your fowl also does some labor breathing as well.
If your chicken keeps opening its mouth widely and may even be accompanied by gasping of air, here are the possible reasons behind this occurrence.
1. Heat Stress
Chickens are pretty good in regulating their body temperature, but it does not mean they would never experience heat stress.
Opening their mouth widely can be their way of releasing the pent-up heat in their body.
It is their attempt in regulating their temperature and cooling themselves down.
Aside from heavy breathing, symptoms of heat stress include drinking more water, eating less food, spreading of their wings, and lack of energy.
2. Throat Blockage
If they keep opening their mouth, your fowl may be having trouble with their breathing.
It is also possible that something has blocked their throat, or worse, their air tract.
Opening the mouth is most likely an attempt to inhale more air and breathe properly.
It is important to watch out for more potential signs, such as weakness, gasping, and trouble breathing.
It is necessary to take your chicken to the nearest veterinarian to address the problem.
3. Parasitic Infection
Gapeworm is a parasite that takes chickens as their common hosts.
It usually infests in the throat of your chicken, reason why they must be opening their mouths all the time.
Your chicken will surely have a hard time in their breathing if they are left untreated.
This parasite can eventually get big enough to cause severe blockage to the air tract of your bird.
It is important to let your chicken be treated by the veterinarian to avoid more complications.
4. Respiratory Problems
Another possible reason why your chicken is opening their mouth frequently before is a respiratory problem.
Some respiratory illnesses like bronchitis may cause your chicken to open their mouth and gasp for air.
You have to remain vigilant in their health and it is highly advisable to take your chicken to a veterinarian for consultations.
Respiratory illnesses should be given immediate attention as it can kill your fowl in no time.
Why Does My Chicken Look Like it’s Gasping for Air?
Gasping for air or trouble breathing is a bad indication regarding your chicken’s health.
There are many possible reasons to rule out, such as too much heat, airflow blockage, or respiratory diseases.
Your chicken may either just be attempting to regulate its body temperature or attempting to breathe and survive already.
If your chicken displays more worrying signs, it is best to consult a veterinarian to pinpoint the real problem.
Make sure to always keep an eye on your chickens and keep them comfortable and all healthy.
Give them fresh and cool water, more space, and proper ventilation in case the problem has something to do with the temperature.
Otherwise, seek a veterinarian’s help if you suspect that it has become serious and more concerning.
Chickens do not usually open their mouth, unless they are feeling some sort of stress or discomfort.
They may be feeling extreme heat, air blockage, or some respiratory illness already.
It is important to always monitor your chicken’s health, so you can give them the immediate attention they need.
If their behavior of opening their mouth has become too frequent and there are more concerning symptoms like gasping for air, take your fowl to the nearest veterinarian as soon as possible.