10 year old chicken is having a tough time


5 Years
Apr 23, 2014
I posted two days ago on my 10 year old hen that I found on her side (twice). She couldn't get up, but after I put her on her feet the second time she has not had that problem until today. Yesterday she had a good day, she was very interested in the corn I brought out to her, and she looked to me like she was feeling better. She doesn't like to walk far before she squats down. This hen gave us 2 eggs every 5 days or so last summer, so I thought maybe she could be eggbound with her first egg of the year if that is possible. I really thought she would be gone by today. Usually when my hens die they are fine one day, slow the next day or two, and then they are gone. This one hasn't really gone downhill since Sunday or Monday at all, and like I said looked better yesterday.

So my questions are:

1. Can a chicken be partially egg bound? I think she still poops and the stuff looks normal to me. I only got 2 birds and I don't see different types of poop out there.

2. Could she have some sort of deficiency that suddenly came on even though she has been on mostly layer mash for 10 years?

3. When she walked earlier this week she would high step, really like her legs up high with each step. Does that signify anything?

4. She ate some really old apples a few days ago, but hasn't had access to those for at least 3 days.

Thanks for any help you can provide.

PS: I know she has had a long life, and maybe this is the end of the road. But I would like to try to help her if I can, if there is something that can be done.

Thanks again for any help.



Premium Feather Member
11 Years
Apr 3, 2011
southern Ohio
I am just amazed that she has lived such a long life, and you must have treated her well all these years. I doubt if she is egg bound, but that is easily checked with a lubricated and gloved finger 1-2 inches into the vent. Her high stepping may be a sign of soreness or arthritis--I had a young hen do that before dying of possible egg yolk peritonitis (which may have been E.coli throughout the body.) I would probably give her a low dose aspirin twice a day with food to keep her comfortable, and provide her with vitamins, probiotics, and good food to repay her for all her good years of laying.

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