Hi there. I'm sorry I've been posting so much-- you all are so helpful!
I have 2 hens who I brought back from sickness a few months ago. When I bought them at 3 months old they had a bad case of depluming mite. They were missing a lot of feathers and lethargic.
Now, only one of them has reoccurring problems with depluming mite, though I applied Eprinex for the first time this week which I hope will get rid of the problem. It's been a long battle.
The birds are best friends, which is very cute to watch. They always want to be together and panic if you take one away. They seem healthy-- walking around, clucking, eating and drinking, pooping normally. The problem is that they are underweight. They are 5.5 months old, an Easter Egger and a Russian Orloff. One has had no health problems for about a month, and one has the depluming mite but is treated often so she doesn't struggle with it too much. Both birds are about 1 kg. I weighed one the other day and she has lost 8 grams since then, despite eating a lot. I hope it is just a scale variance. I would say they are at about a 2 on the chicken fatness scale, with thin legs and prominent keels.
My question is, how do I make sure the birds are eating enough? How do I get them to put on weight? I thought recovering from disease would make them gain weight quickly, but it has not. I am keeping them indoors for now and see that they eat plenty, and enthusiastically at that. Maybe they don't eat as much outside? They have food constantly available and the other chickens don't pick on them too badly.
I started Safeguard wormer on them the other day. I'm aiming for 5 days in a row and then one more treatment 5 days later. I've never seen any worms but I'm hoping the wormer will clear anything up. They've never been wormed before.
Inside they are in an 80 degree room with grower crumble and water . They have been filling their crops. I have been keeping them up from 7am till about 11pm to make sure they are eating as much as possible.
How much should they weigh? How fast should they get there? Is it necessary to force feed when they eat so much on their own? When would it be safe to put them outside? Are there other treatments I should try? These 2 chickens have already been spoiled to death, so no use stopping here.
Thanks so much.
Edited by MissBokBok - 12/17/15 at 10:14pm