Ascites ( baloon belly)

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by fowlgirl, Jan 10, 2009.

  1. fowlgirl

    fowlgirl Out Of The Brooder

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    Thanks for your help, I drained my hen today with the hope she only had Ascites(water baloon belly) I sucked about half cup of liquid from her belly and she has been draining for 4 hours now.I gave her a nice warm bath and low blow drier,She loved that,she would purr if she could, She feels so much better and eating again. You guys are a godsend!
     
  2. ChickLuver

    ChickLuver Chillin' With My Peeps

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    What is baloon belly?
     
  3. ruth

    ruth Life is a Journey

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    So glad it worked. You'll probably have to do it again in a couple of months, and then maybe forever. I have a hen I have been periodically draining for several months but other than that, she's "normal" in all respects - freeranges, lay eggs, roosts.

    Relieving her of that extra water weight will make her feel good as new. My hen was huge and laying near death, unable to move, and I had asked DH to cull her when I decided I would try draining that huge bag first. I was surprised to drain out a cup of clear water and she continued draining for an hour or more. Then she was as good as new.

    By the way, Chickluver, balloon belly is when they fill with water (Ascites) which can be drained with a needle.
     
  4. chickeepoo

    chickeepoo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    So glad you were able to fix her up! I'm still watching my hen, but she doesn't seem to be uncomfortable yetÂ… laid her egg yesterday, just still full of something. I'd love to find out it was ascites, but we didn't have any luck trying to withdraw any fluid with a needle and syringe. I may try one more with someone locally to see if we were just too chicken-illiterate to do the procedure correctly! But congrats again, and best wishes to the rest of your girls !
     
  5. CarriBrown

    CarriBrown Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

    Quote:Ruth, can you explain to me how this is done? I'm wondering if this is what Potpie has.
     
  6. ruth

    ruth Life is a Journey

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    Quote:Ruth, can you explain to me how this is done? I'm wondering if this is what Potpie has.

    Hi Carri - in my hen's case there was an obvious "bag" of something hanging down. When felt it felt just like a water balloon and was all squishy. I just used a regular needle/syringe and inserted it into the "bag" and drew out water. I had to keep repeating procedure because she was so full. However, she was so full and tight that some of the needle holes would just continue to drain on their own. This last time I drained her, I used a larger syringe. That meant it would hold more water and I wouldn't have to stick her as many times.

    If your hen has some sort of "bag" hanging down you can always try the needle and see what comes out - try the bottom of the bag first. There shouldn't be any sort of vital organ or bone or anything else you could possibly hit if you just go into the "bag".
     
  7. CarriBrown

    CarriBrown Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

    Quote:Ruth, can you explain to me how this is done? I'm wondering if this is what Potpie has.

    Hi Carri - in my hen's case there was an obvious "bag" of something hanging down. When felt it felt just like a water balloon and was all squishy. I just used a regular needle/syringe and inserted it into the "bag" and drew out water. I had to keep repeating procedure because she was so full. However, she was so full and tight that some of the needle holes would just continue to drain on their own. This last time I drained her, I used a larger syringe. That meant it would hold more water and I wouldn't have to stick her as many times.

    If your hen has some sort of "bag" hanging down you can always try the needle and see what comes out - try the bottom of the bag first. There shouldn't be any sort of vital organ or bone or anything else you could possibly hit if you just go into the "bag".

    What Potpie has looks like a beer gut. It swings when she moves and is squishy. It will drag on the ground when she pecks. I've done everything I can think of and it just won't go down. It seemed to go down a month or so ago but then it came right back. She's like a brick house when you pick her up and she seems very forward heavy. She is otherwise healthy.
    What sized needle and syringe did you use? How did you get the hen to hold still?
    I looked to see if I have a picture of Potpie with a clear view of the gut, but I don't. I'll have to take one tomorrow and post it for you.
     
  8. chickenannie

    chickenannie Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I had posted on this a few months ago. Apparently its typical of meat birds, but does anyone know what causes this in layers?
     
  9. ruth

    ruth Life is a Journey

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    Carri - is it in the back, hanging between the legs or are you talking about a pendulous crop hanging down in the front and swaying? I had a hen that had that as well and since she was fine otherwise, we left it alone - named her Pammy after Pamela Lee Anderson on BayWatch. By end of day when she came running, she had a bag swishing and swaying from side to side and you could hear BayWatch music playing. [​IMG]

    Regarding needle size, I just used the small needle and syringe I had for giving shots but then realized I had to keep inserting needle because the syringe would not hold much. Next time I bought the larger syringe.

    As far as holding still - she was my first chicken and is very tame but I do lots of operations and sewing up of hens and I find they will sit still if you put a towel over their head. In her case, I didn't have to. I could just hold her because it didn't hurt her. Now I can just put some food down and drain her while she eats.

    If it's ascites, she will feel so much better when you get that water weight out of her.

    ChickenAnnie - a few people have posted that their non meat birds (layers) have had this as well. I don't know what causes it. I've read liver failure but if that's the case, my hen is living a normal life and it's been almost a year since the first occurence of ascites. I've also read reproductive failure but she lays eggs.
     
  10. fowlgirl

    fowlgirl Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 4, 2008
    I had my man cradle her so her belly was up with a towel.She even had blisters from the swelling.Chickens dont have pain receptors like we do so she didnt even flinch,It was very easy.i put neele in qrarter of the way and sucked slowly what I could and she drained out the rest all day.Now she is so much better except for her chewd up head from being attacked for being sick.So was too lathargic to defend her rank. I let her out with the other hens other day and it was quite a show to see the interaction. My foghorn seems to be the one who attacked her and they had a staring contest while the others watched.My Condi fell asleep though and Fog walked off.Condi is not at full capacity to fight for rank yet. She is second in command of the flock.
     

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