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Barred Rock Hen acting strange - is she ill?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Tria821, Mar 22, 2017.

  1. Tria821

    Tria821 New Egg

    I have a 1yo barred rock hen who has been perfectly normal, in fact even a little shy, up until yesterday mid-morning. She stopped hanging out with our old girl (6yo mixed breed hen) and simply stood stock still in the yard, staring at nothing for hours on end. She wouldn't come over when the girls got their afternoon treats either. I went over and picked her up with no fuss on her part. She seemed fine but even with putting the bread right in front of her she wasn't interested. I moved her nearer the gardens at which point she walked into the greenhouse, grabbed a drink and then stood there for over an hour. She did go into the coop on her own, as normal, but she didn't roost, she stayed on the straw with the ducks which IS odd for any of my chickens to do.

    This morning she came out, didn't eat and started the standing still and staring thing again. She isn't in any obvious distress, she has no runny eyes or nose, no cough, no wounds, just a bit listless. I don't want to do a full on vent check just yet (mostly for fear of accidentally introducing germs into her vent) but I did give her a long soak (15-20min) in a warm bath which she enjoyed, a blow dry with warm air and now have her sitting in the house in a little box where she is napping. I haven't been able to get her to eat or drink today, but my son took her onto his lap and got her to eat a little bread. She wakes up and is alert when she hears noise or when one of my cats decides to drink water from the chicken's dish.

    Should I be worried? Is there something else I should be doing for her? None of the rest of the flock is acting oddly (5 chicken hens, 11 duck hens, 4 duck drakes). No one is ill and we're just heading into Spring in North Eastern Pennsylvania.
     
  2. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Sits With Chickens Premium Member

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    Definitely sounds like something is wrong with her. Sometimes they get better sometimes they don't. Not much more you can do unless you want to take her to a vet.
     
  3. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    I'd isolate this bird in a wire crate right in the coop so she can stay 'with' the flock,
    where you can monitor her eating, drinking, pooping.

    Had she been laying previously to this behavior?

    Did you examine her abdomen when you bathed her, any swelling?
    Are you sure she can she see alright?
     
  4. Tria821

    Tria821 New Egg

    She had been laying as of Fall of last year, I don't know if she's laid this year as the chickens like to share one nesting box and ignore the other two. I did not notice any swelling. I believe she can see as she focused in on the cats when they came up to sniff her water and food. Right now she's in the spare bathroom so I can monitor if she voids (nothing yet) and as it will be going down to 15 tonight and I don't want anymore stress on her. I am concerned as she doesn't want to sit now, during this afternoon she sat in a box and napped, now she's just standing.
     
  5. Tria821

    Tria821 New Egg

    Just an update. I did a vent check and there is no egg however a fair amount of runny, foul smelling, yellowish fecal matter came out. We put her back into a warm bath to clean her up and gave her a dropper-full of crushed calcium, vitamin B complex and aspirin mixed in water every 5 minutes (3 doses total) which seems to have perked her up. She started eating a little and she's drinking a lot more water today. Apparently she's taken a shine to my son and will only eat and drink when he's around.

    I did a water test of the fecal contents and see no obvious signs of worms so I'm going to keep my eyes on her and keep her isolated for the next 7 days and see how things go.

    [​IMG]
     
  6. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    What is this "water test"....did you look at it thru a microscope??

    Hopefully she just ate something nasty and it's now moving thru.
     
    Last edited: Mar 24, 2017

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