It was literally like a big warm squishy water balloon with like 1L or more of liquid in it. She couldnt even walk!! I caught it the first day in the afternoon, thank god, and drained her that night even though the vet said he wouldnt because it would likely cause her to go into shock. But after reading enough on here about ascites I decided I had to do most of it because her breathing was very laboured. I took 700mL out and then once she was back in her cage on a towel she was able to stand and all the reat just dripped out overnight. There had to have been another couple cups because the towel was half soaked! I was worried but she started looking better. This was Friday. Today shes 90% back to normal. She even came running to me today for some watermelom and apple!!!thankfully I looked up other people's experiences and found it was probably the bwst thing to do. Tosay I went to the University of Guelph because I cannot figure out what was wrong with the other hen that mysteriously got ill around the same time. I was convinced it was egg yolk peritonitis or another reproductive issue but they did an ultrasound and found she looks totally normal internally! Her bloodwork indicates an infection though and ill find out more this week when results come back. In the meantime they gave me a better oral antibiotic. I truly wanted to rule out eyp or reproductive issues, worms, parasites etc. Could be viral but unlikely Mareks. Just driving me nuts not knowing. They were quite good today but previously not great..just depends how busy they are. Its going to be an expensive week with todays bill and now I have to get my front and rear brakes done tomorrow 😕 fortunately seeing Martha happy and devouring food and running again makes it all worth it. Yes I am nuts for my pet chickens. Lol!!!
Ps you have a good man there! I have to cull birds myself...he can't even watch me do it. I hate it but someone's got to do it!! He will deal with the burial though. Lol
Edited by Woobsie - 6/7/16 at 3:40pm
Originally Posted by chickcrack
Yes I would like to avoid hatchery now if I can after this experience. I have read a lot of threads by speckled hen about the same issues. I had a neighbour do a necropsy on one bird (because I didn't have the guts to) and there was a massive solid tumor filling her abdomen. That girl had only laid normal eggs for about 2 months. Then started laying tiny eggs or eggs with a flat side for another 4 months then stopped altogether. She would sit in the nesting box for hours a day because she felt like she had to lay I guess. She was first I took to a vet (only one I could find to see her was an exotic bird vet but she also raises chickens). She x-rayed and her abdomen was a solid white mass...couldn't identify most organs as they weren't where they were supposed to be. I brought her home and decided to just let her live life as long as she seemed to enjoy it. Boyfriend ended up putting her out of her misery not long after. I can't say all mine have had this same issue. But they all seem to be reproductive related.
I have found a couple of heritage breed breeders around here that I'd like to start learning more about. Just because they breed birds doesn't mean they breed for health and strength I'm guessing. I bought my Cochin's from a breeder but in conversation with him I think he bred what was popular and he felt would sell well. They hen that you drained...did her abdomen feel really hard or squishy with all that liquid? Just curious what to watch for.