background: we have backyard chickens in Houston, and they spend most of their time in a large enclosed run with access to an above-ground roosting house with hay on the floor. They have perches, which they sleep on, and we clean the poop-boards once a week or more, if they are extra-messy. They are different ages, but all around 2 years old. We had 5 - in late summer, 2 pretty much stopped laying. In October, 1 of the regular-layers suddenly had a very messy prolapse and died. A couple weeks later, we gave one non-laying hen to a friend because that hen was getting picked on incessantly. The hen who had died was her pal, and we felt like she was just going to be miserable. (update: that hen has blossomed in her new home, has regrown her feathers. She's still not laying, but she had a tendency to get broody anyway and would stop laying for weeks at a time.) So, fast forward to December. All was well. We were getting 1-2 eggs a day. The remaining non-laying hen would occasionally lay a soft egg. I think in all those months, we maybe got 1-2 eggs from her that were intact. Suddenly, on Dec 26, our best layer died. We were not in town, and the chicken-sitters were not really familiar enough with chickens to tell us of any behavior changes, except that on Dec 25, they only got 1 egg, and they aren't sure "whose" egg it was. The day before, she apparently was hanging out on her perch during the day, which is unusual for her. And they found her dead, just laying in the hay, like she had gotten comfy, then put her head down and died. It was cold that night, but not freezing. This morning: It's now been about a week. Our remaining layer has maybe given us 5 eggs - normal. But NOW, the non-layer is limping. We let them out of thee coop, and watched her. She is clearly having trouble walking - doesn't appear to be just one leg, but more of a balance issue. When she got out of the coop, she really had to pause and put a lot of energy into jumping UP onto the board that is at the door. Then she sat on that board for a few seconds, recovering, it seemed, before hopping off and looking for food. She was walking SLOWLY around, pecking at the dirt for bugs and eating leaves. ( the other hen is doing the same, but walking like normal) She is making a few clucking sounds, pretty much like normal. She has yellowy wet feathers under her tush. She hasn't laid eggs in weeks. The poop in the hutch looks normal. (Husband cleaned it yesterday.) Nothing has changed in their diet - same food as always. What do we look for? or do? I really don't want to lose ANOTHER hen!