How can I treat trichomonas in backyard poultry, producing eggs for human consumption, in compliance with legislation? Metronidazole and ronidazole are on the banned list. Can we use them on an animal welfare basis and what egg withdrawal would we apply? Or is there an alternative treatment anyone has found successful?
Trichomoniasis or Oral Canker can be difficult to treat due to the persistent caseous lesions often found in the mouth but additionally in the proventriculus or even liver. Prognosis is guarded even with the use of Metronidazole. Due to the concerns regarding the potential carcinogenic properties of Metronidazole it must not be used in food producing animals (of which layer chickens are) as written in law by the EU. I have found some success in using Doxycycline for an extended period (5-7 days) with a full 28 days withdrawal time. The organisms spread rapidly through oral secretion into open water sources and therefore removal of infected birds into isolation is key. Addition of a water cleaner to ensure top water hygiene is paramount to reduce spread. Discourage wild birds from coming into contact with the birds, pigeons and doves are the most commonly recognised carriers of Trichomoniasis.