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Is she sick or just old?

post #1 of 3
Thread Starter 

I am trying to figure out if my hen is sick or just a senior chicken.  

 

I know Henrietta is older than my other hens. But I am not sure how old, I got her and some of her friends from a gentleman who was selling his mother's chickens. I think she is an Orpington, not sure there either.  I let my girls out in the evening about an hour before dark.I have been doing this for about 2 months, I did it last year too. Friday night the girls and I sat out, Henrietta was scratching away in the beds along with the other girls. Saturday morning she didn't come out of the coop. I went in and she was on the poop ledge (the board under the roost). She wasn't able to stand. 

 

I looked her all over, she doesn't have bugs, no bites, no outward injuries. I don't see any swelling in her legs/joints. She isn't feeling well because she let me handle her without a total freak out. I even turned her over. Her waddle is good color, but flopping over.  Her eyes are round and bright. 

 

I took her out of the coop and put her in the "old" coop (version 1 is a nice, but small space, separate from version 2) with her own water, food - I put scratch in the bowl first to intice her. She didn't need incitement to eat. I also fed her a special dose of probiotics and cooked hamburger rice, which I had on hand for my little dog who has stomach issues. Today I gave her scrambled eggs and yogurt whey, which she also gobbled down. She has probiotics in the water. She has her crumbles, which I also mixed in with the eggs. 

 

She is panting. It was hot on Saturday- high humility, but the other girls weren't panting. (both coops and the yard is under a big, shady tree in a cool spot in the yard - we are in the deep south).

 

I kept an eye on her yesterday (Saturday), and she stood twice. When she sat down, she was having a hard time tucking her legs under and she had her wings 'out'.

 

Today (Sunday), she was standing a couple of times. She is keeping her feet under her when she sits, but she doesn't pull her wings in tight when she sits. It was cooler today, the humility was lower. She is still panting. 

 

She feels warm. 

 

Tonight she laid an egg. The shell was paper thin, but the yoke was bright yellow, no blood spots.

 

She has normal stool, not loose or bloody.

 

I don't want to keep her isolated, but I don't if she is sick.

 

Any thoughts?   


Edited by TornadoRed - 5/1/16 at 6:01pm
post #2 of 3

She may be dehydrated, so putting some electrolytes with vitamins in her water for a day or two might help. Dehydration is a common cause of lameness or imbalance. Coccidiosis should be considered since she is new to your soil. Corid treats that. Thin egg  shells can be common in older hens, and whenever that happens, there could be chances of egg yolk peritonitis. Make sure she takes some crushed egg shells a few times a week, or give oyster shell on the side. Sometimes a local bet can run a fecal float on some fresh droppings to rule out coccidia and different worms.

post #3 of 3
Thread Starter 

thanks Eggcessive. 

 

I've had Henrietta and company for about 3 yrs. But we had heavy flooding this fall and the coop yard got 6-8 inches of water. This is why we build the Chicken mahal, complete with porch. It's 12 inch off the ground. 

 

Coccidiosis maybe the culprit here, pathogens introduced from the flood. I know that sick and injured animals will hide the symptoms, it's a survival thing. I would suspect then that the others have the same issue. But they are younger. Her 'white' stool was very slightly pink I had to really look at it in the sunlight. But her "not white" stools were normal.  

 

I found Corid on Amazon and ordered it, I am not sure of the dosage - I guess the bottle will tell me per gallon.  

 

I have Backyard Chicken Health Kit and have started the Zyfend A for every one. 

 

She was standing today.  Still isolated. 

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