Patience, a Black Star who will be turning 7 years old in the spring, has been sick lately. Late in the summer, we had to rescue her from flystrike, recovering in 3 weeks. Now, she is again in tough condition.
A while ago, she molted beautifully. Now, she is very light and her breastbone has little meat on it, feeling almost sharp in my hand. She seems to have had some issues with runny droppings (today I clipped some of the dropping-laden feathers), and she has also had much less of an appetite than the rest of the flock. She doesn't seem to care for grain, but will eat bread. I also noticed, while hand-feeding her, that she has a weak peck and will sometimes even drop food. Other symptoms of whatever seem to be ailing her include being lethargic, often standing with her neck pulled in and her eyes closed, and a slight droopiness of the eyes. I rarely see her preen her feathers, though they don't seem to be in bad shape.
She is fortunately receiving good treatment from the rest of the flock. Some of our other hens of the same age often accompany her and will even huddle up next to her when she is tired and goes into the henhouse, even though it is broad daylight and they would likely rather be outside in the yard foraging.
Are these symptoms enough to diagnose her? Is there any way to help? I know she will probably need more weight on her for these New England winters.