Hi, I've posted about this hen before, but I have a more specific issue that I'd really appreciate any thoughts on.
Myrtle is ~3 yo Buff Orpington. She's been chronically underweight, although with great appetite, for a long time, so she is very thin.
The problem: on days when she has an egg to lay, her left leg doesn't work properly. The scale goes from unable to extend left leg to can't even uncurl toes on her own up to can't stand at all, even on her good right leg. As soon as she lays the egg, which is either late at night or in the afternoon, her legs work better.
This past week she's gotten to the point where the left leg is still bad regardless of egg day or not, and she can barely manage to gimp around. She finally laid yesterday after 8 days since her last and is able to stand and balance on her right leg again, maneuver her left leg and toes, and limp very short distances, but it's still very limited range of motion in the left leg.
What I'd like thoughts on:
- could the forming egg cause a pinched nerve in her leg? maybe the lack of fat padding (she's really skinny) caused/contributes to it?
- how can I treat her to support healing of this leg, whether for a potential pinched nerve or other leg problem?
What I'm doing already: she's being dosed with Nutri-Drench for vitamin and calcium boost (she's developed a tendency to lay soft-shelled eggs, too), I've given her salmon oil for immune boost, I just started sprinkling turmeric and black pepper on her treats for inflammation reduction. She sleeps in a narrow cardboard box so that her bad leg can't slip out to the side and she lay on it it wrong all night; she now has a daytime box, too, that's a bit wider but can help her from slipping over during the day. She gets lots of organic layer feed, free choice oyster shell, she LOVES greens so she gets a lot to entertain her, plus whatever treats we've got (she's convalescing inside the house).
If you have any thoughts on leg healing or causes, please drop a comment! The situation isn't improving and it will get worse quickly if she doesn't bounce back to using that leg again as the pattern had been.
Edited by Twitcherette - 3/10/16 at 9:11am