Advice on sick girl

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by giantsridge, Nov 25, 2009.

  1. giantsridge

    giantsridge In the Brooder

    Apr 23, 2009
    Biwabik, MN
    Hi all,

    We are new chicken parents this year, and everything has been going fine until recently. We have 6 girls- 3 Goldstars and 3 Leghorns, about 8 months old. About a month and a half ago we moved them from a summer tractor into a new coop i built for the winter. They seemed to adjust quite well. They free range most days, so have plenty of room.

    A couple weeks ago, we noticed one of the Goldstars was occasionally 'hiding' on the floor of the coop, away from the others. Every few days, an egg would be found on the floor (can't say for sure it was her's, but in hindsight it seems likely), rather than in the nest boxes they all use. We didn't think much of it, as they all seemed healthy otherwise.

    2 nights ago, she appeared 'tired' and was sitting in the corner of the coop. She was in the same spot in the morning, definitely looking sluggish and her poop looked whitish and runny. We let them all out to free range for the day, but this one just stood in the yard and wouldn't play. She was drinking water and eating a little grass, but otherwise not moving. I had to lift her back into the coop, and put her up on the roosting bar under the heat lamp to warm up. She stayed in the same spot all night, then sat in the corner of the run most of the day today.

    We moved her into our house tonight, hoping we could get her to eat and drink, but she'll have none of it...she is now resting and just not moving much. We feel awful not knowing what is wrong or what to do to help her. Any suggestions?

  2. Plain Old Dee

    Plain Old Dee Songster

    Oct 30, 2009
    Seminole, OK
    Chickens are notorious for not showing any signs of illness or weakness until it's virtually too late to help them. There is a sticky that is second from the top of this forum "Have an Emergency" that will ask you some detailed questions. I think you can just cut an paste the questions and add your answers. This will give us the detailed information we need to try to determine what may be wrong. You can also look at this website to see if there is a picture similar the poo your girl is making - this will also help you diagnose what might be the problem.

    Oops! forgot to post the link!

    sorry that your girl isn't feeling well - and I am not very experienced with chicken illnesses. I used to have chickens years ago - but never noticed any illness - till I lost the whole flock of 60+ hens to a neighbors dogs. I just recently got hens again, and wouldn't you know it - their all sick with CRD. They are getting better, but I may still have to cull the whole lot of them...[​IMG]
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2009
  3. elmo

    elmo Songster

    May 23, 2009
    You did the right thing to isolate the bird that's not acting right. Chickens will bully a weak or vulnerable bird, so you're sparing her that. Additionally, you help to avoid infection of the rest of the flock in case she has something contagious.

    Other than a trip to the vet (and it can be hard in many places to find a vet who will see chickens) you can offer supportive care until some more definitive symptom shows itself. Sometimes you can coax a bird to eat by offering special foods, like scrambled egg, mealworms, whole grain bread crumbled and moistened with honey and olive oil, etc. In extreme cases, you can use a syringe to hydrate with Pedialyte, and use a bird formula like Kaytee Exact for handfeeding.

    Good luck, and I hope your chicken gets better soon
  4. PandoraTaylor

    PandoraTaylor RT Poultry n Things

    Jun 29, 2009
    Check for Egg Binding, add electrolytes to drinking water. If you can see/feel an egg near her vent, try warm bath and/or oil on vent.
    Keep warm.

  5. giantsridge

    giantsridge In the Brooder

    Apr 23, 2009
    Biwabik, MN
    It has been at least two days since she has eaten or drank anything, and she is getting very weak...appears to have trouble standing up this morning. All day yesterday she would only stand up to poop, which was very scant and runny, then sit back down right away. She also has not produced any eggs in at least two days, so we were hoping she was eggbound. My wife is a nurse, so after work last night, we donned the rubber gloves and KY, but couldn't find anything...We were able to get her (more like force her) to drink some water out of a syringe (we added electrolyte and tetracycline powder that was suggested by our local feed store). She only took about 10mL of fluid.

    She has no other symptoms besides the runny white/yellow poop and being lethargic, so we are at a loss...

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