We laid my sweetie, Babe, to rest Wednesday night. She never showed improvement, displayed the same symptoms even after surgery. She could not walk, but would shuffle her feet, crouched low. She often fell while walking. She was indoors full time for 3 weeks. We brought her from Death's door 3 times in her 5 years, and have seen her very sick before.Tuesday night she fell over while sleeping. We propped her up with rolled up towels overnight, she couldn't hold her head up. There was no manure at all Wednesday. She wouldn't eat or drink, she was interested in food and water but not able to put anything in her beek. I held her to encourage her but she was very week. I wrapped her in a thin blanket and put her in bed with me while I read to her. She was too weak to make cooing sounds anymore, just the sound of exhaling. I told my little friend how much I love her and what she means, she is an icon here and has made this place feel more like home to all of us.
I read about ways of euthanizing chickens, and decided the dry ice method would be easiest for her. We found a good size box, big enough for her plus a bit more. I made a big bed of soft towels on one side of the box. She was sleeping mostly any way. When I put her on this bed I stayed til she felt comfortable and relaxed, closed her eyes and began to snooze. We placed a bowl of dry ice near her, but not where she could touch it. Closed the top, and placed a heavy towel over it. The directions said the gas omitted would render her unconscious then restrict breathing, resulting in death, in 3 -5 minutes. It worked perfectly. I saw no evidence this could have caused any discomfort to her. We knew that death was eminent but didn't want to make her suffer any more by waiting for it to happen on its own, 2 hours or 2 days from the time.
Thank you for your advice.