Bad Infection on Abdomen Unknown Cause!

MotherheninTX

Hatching
Feb 19, 2016
6
0
7
This evening I noticed my 3 year old hen sitting on her roost, picking at her feathers on her abdomen area. Looking closer, I saw that her feet looked dirty, and her feathers under her belly were soiled as well. I picked her up to inspect her, and immediately noticed a foul odor. Then I realized she had a large area of feathers missing, and an obvious infection of some sort. I took her inside to bathe her in a warm Epsom salt bath and to try clean her and to get a better idea of what was wrong. When I pulled her legs apart, I saw tons of MAGGOTS crawling around all over! I realize this is in response to the infection. My question is what could have caused this? She was acting just fine, not limping or anything else unusual. I do have 24 hens, but as far as i know, she has been eating and drinking. I haven't noticed her sitting with her tail down, ever. She forages free range with the rest of the girls. I will try to get pictures tomorrow. For tonight, she is in the infirmary by herself. I used Vetericyn spray on the area. Should I give her antibiotics? I don't have a vet who will see chickens in my area.

Thanks in advance! This is one of my original girls and I sure don't want to lose her!

Jackie in Texas
 

Wyorp Rock

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Premium Feather Member
5 Years
Sep 20, 2015
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Southern N.C. Mountains
Photos are always welcome.

Generally if there are maggots it is called "FlyStrike".

Give her another soak in Epsom salts, salt water, betadine or soap/water clean the area well and try to get all the maggots out and any pus that you see. You may need tweezers to pick the maggots out of hard to reach places. Repeat the bath a few times a day until the maggots are gone. Dry her off between baths and apply your vetericyn.

Monitor her so she eats and drinks well, provide her with some extra protein like egg, tuna, mackerel or meat.

http://www.the-chicken-chick.com/2014/07/flystrike-in-backyard-chickens-causes.html
https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/1112432/large-wound-on-backside-of-chicken
 

MotherheninTX

Hatching
Feb 19, 2016
6
0
7
Thank you so much Wyorp Rock! I think it must be flystrike, although it doesn't involve her vent. I did find a hole where the maggots had burrowed and were apparently eating away at her poor belly! This has been the most disgusting/difficult thing I've ever encountered in my years of chicken keeping! I am treating her as outlined on The Chicken Chick's page, and hoping she recovers!
 

Wyorp Rock

🐓 ❤ 🐛
Premium Feather Member
5 Years
Sep 20, 2015
35,433
50,667
1,332
Southern N.C. Mountains
Thank you so much Wyorp Rock! I think it must be flystrike, although it doesn't involve her vent. I did find a hole where the maggots had burrowed and were apparently eating away at her poor belly! This has been the most disgusting/difficult thing I've ever encountered in my years of chicken keeping! I am treating her as outlined on The Chicken Chick's page, and hoping she recovers!
You are doing the right thing.
Treatment would be pretty much the same regardless of where on the body it is.

I hope she recovers soon let us know how she is doing.
 

MotherheninTX

Hatching
Feb 19, 2016
6
0
7
Unfortunately, I made the difficult decision this evening to end my sweet hen's suffering. She had gotten progressively worse throughout the day and with each cleaning/bath, and this eve I noticed she was very warm feeling and hadn't eaten anything all day. She had barely moved in her crate, either. I didn't want her to continue to suffer.
 

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