Bone thin hen, watery droppings. Please help

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by clarepage, Nov 3, 2009.

  1. clarepage

    clarepage New Egg

    Nov 3, 2009
    Hi everyone, I am wondering if you could help me. I have two French marans, around 10 months old. One of them started to moult a week ago, and then, they both started to get watery smelly droppings, as if they had wet as well as pooped. No blood. As the one who was moulting's feathers started to come off I noticed she was really looking skinny. These birds don't like to be picked up and handled, but I managed to grab her and discovered she was emaciated! Her breastbone is sticking out like a blade. I checked the other one whilst it was sleeping tonight, and whilst not as thin, it still has the breastbone protruding too much, still to thin. They of course always have layers' pellets and fresh water provided at all times. They do like to drink from the bird bath, though. I have no idea what to do or what could be wrong. I live in rural france and their answer to a sick chicken is to cull it.

    I could see no mites on the one that was moulting, but she did seem to be shedding what look like a snowstorm of dandruff.

    Behaviour: The one in moult hasn't laid an egg for about six weeks, the one not in moult who is a slightly better weight lays regularly (got an egg today)They are strolling around as normal, but the moulting one does seem a bit more subdued ( i thought it was the moult). I am not sure if they have been eating less- they forage free range and only eat a little layers pellet anyway. But today, i brought out their favourite treat of corn and sunflower seeds and the really skinny one only ate a little and left the rest - unheard of.

    Any advice would be much appreciated. Thank you.
    Last edited: Nov 3, 2009
  2. usschicago1

    usschicago1 Suburban Cochins

    Aug 11, 2009
    Taunton, MA
    I am Lucky for this to never have happened to me so therefor my advice is only what i have read from others.

    Check Late tonight or first thing tommorow morning and see if there crop is empty. It should be. If not post on here and we'll help you.
    Have you wormed them ever? If not worms can and will kill your birds.
    Are the coughing sneeaing or hang there head down?

    is it really hot where you are?
    Did you hatch them or buy them from somebody?
    is there alot of wild birds in your area?
    does there breath smell?
  3. mypicklebird

    mypicklebird Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 8, 2008
    Sonoma Co, CA
    Definitely give the ill one's crop a good feel- if she is not eating well- it should be empty or very small. If it is large and hard or soft and liquidy/gassy (compare to healthy bird)- you probably have a crop impaction (usually a grass matt). If the crop is full, a 12-24 hr food fast will tell you for sure if it is impacted. A normal crop will be empty by then. If the crop is impacted- there are various ways to try to relieve this. If the bird is really debilitated- I would not go for the several days of massage/oil treatment- I would either cull or seek out help to surgically remove the grass matt.
    If this is not an impacted crop- there are many things that can cause a young bird to get skinny- from GI worms, mites/lice, internal infection, coccidia, internal viral infections.
  4. clarepage

    clarepage New Egg

    Nov 3, 2009
    Firstly, thank you so much for your quick reply. it means a lot. I'll answer your questions in a quote. Many thanks.

  5. usschicago1

    usschicago1 Suburban Cochins

    Aug 11, 2009
    Taunton, MA
    No Problem.
    so yes i would check her over for lice Mites.
    Then i would worm her. I typed this up for the NEBC on how to worm your flock.

    The First time that you worm your chickens for the year, use wazine 17 also known as piperazine-17.
    Wazine: 1 ounce per gallon of water for all birds over four weeks of age as their *sole* source of water for one day (24 hours) replacing with fresh water in the morning.
    Wazine gets ride of large roundworms (Toxocara canis & Toxascaris leonine). You do wazine first so when your worm with your main wormer you don’t have a back-up of roundworms, the most common worm in chickens. Wazine works by paralyzing roundworms and they are expelled into the environment. This is when the die, nearly immediately. Checking the poop cannot determine if they have worms!.
    Now for the big roundup.
    In promptly 4 weeks follow up with invermection Pour on NOT to be confused with invermectin inject able. This kills the new adult roundworms that may have been missed, lungworms, & basically any other parasite that could possibly be in your bird.
    How to use it:
    Put 4 drops on a normal sized bantam, 6 on a large bird, 2-3 on small bantam (ex. Serama). Make sure not to overdose. Find a naked part on their skin, add add their dosage via eyedropper or syringe tip.
    Why to worm? Worms and parasites usually live in the intestines which burrow holes in the intestine lining. Even when they are long gone the holes always remain, and birds cannot absorb nutrients with all those holes. The more parasites and worms the less nutrients they can absorb, the skinnier they’ll be, weaker, less productive and shorter lifespan. That’s why you want to prevent that. They also can live in other places like LUNGworms and CROPworms. People may say to put invermectin in water but that is not recommended because birds are build to get ride of the food they eat quickly. With it on there back though it slowly releases threw the skin.
    It may feel awkward at first but it benefits your birds and they will live longer and healthier.
    Repeat with invermectin pour on ever 6 months.
    Do not eat eggs for 2 weeks after worming with both pauperizing 17 & Invermectin.
    Mark Pacheco October 7th, 2009
    Thanks to threehorses for educating me on this

    Also Are they with other birds? Seperate them immediatly if they are!
    Mark (;

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