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brown silkie hen lost a lot of weight over the month and is now tired and skinny. Does not eat well

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by brown silkie, Mar 4, 2015.

  1. brown silkie

    brown silkie New Egg

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    Mar 4, 2015
    This hen is couple of years old and use to be really robust. She is so light now. Her feed is kitchen scraps (cooked grain, bread, noodles etc) and dry grains including sunflower seeds in the hulls, millet in the hulls, wheat and corn pieces, whole milo. I know too much scratch. I just washed her feet and her mite issue has improved a lot. She is in a flock of ten hens. I saw her fighting one of the hens yesterday. She is the lowest on the pecking order. We treated her foot mites with Vicks vapor rub only about once a week if that much. She does shake her head a lot especially to the sound of my voice! She has a yard with lots of fresh grass. I thought they could find enough grit but I think I will buy some. I saw her pecking the oyster shell yesterday and eating a little cooked oatmeal and a few sunflower seeds (without shells) She has walked around making a plaintive sound more so lately although my daughter says she always has. She is alert - watching my fingers on the key board. My question is - what food is best? Should I give her a quiet place alone to rest and recover (and observe her more?) There is a young cat which likes to chase the chickens so...
    that is a stress. Also, the temperature goes to freezing at night and has been mostly comfortable during the day. I think her crop feels a little mushy but there is food and water in the coop at night. And I have kept the electric light on too much at night for warmth and drying things out (sometimes we are rainy) I suppose that makes her get picked on more. She does not smell funny. She is like I said alert but tired and skinny. I will give her comfort but I need to know what best to offer for food. I was concerned about our oyster shell. Can mold be an issue with that? I was also concerned about our crumbles - they don't really like them. I bought a big bag - and it is more than six months old should I toss it? She just got too skinny. And she does not each much any more. I did give her some of the cat's stinky food last night and she ate some not much. I am going to cook her some millet, keep her with me more and await your advice. Thank you!



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  2. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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    Through out the 6 month old feed, since the vitamins and minerals can become depleted, and the feed could grow mold which can be dangerous. With only 10 chickens you may want to buy small bags of feed more often, or split a larger bag of feed with another chicken friend. Use a good brand of feed. I recently tried a generic bag when my feed store ran out of what I prefer, and my chickens would not eat it. Stop all of the extras, and just use the feed. You can occasionally wet a small amount of it, or put a small amount of buttermilk into it to make it taste good. A good probiotic such as Probios Powder would be good to add to the water. Many feeds now include probiotics in their formulas, even Purina and Nutrena brands. Vitamins may also increase her appetite. Make sure there are more than one feed and water station, since silkies can be low in pecking order.
     
  3. brown silkie

    brown silkie New Egg

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    Mar 4, 2015
    Thank you very much for the information. I will go buy fresh feed. I slept her in the warmth of the house last night. She has the front yard to herself and it is sunny. She does not make mournful noises and almost acts like a broody hen. You are right about buying smaller bags. I will do that too. I buy the crumbles which I think are for the little chicks but silkies are small and don't eat the layer pellets. Is that going to work?
    I have never given the chickens vitamins. What do you recommend? Thank you again.
     
  4. enola

    enola Overrun With Chickens

    Have you ever wormed your chickens? A wet rainy rnvironment would be perfect for overload of worms.
     
  5. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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    For vitamins I like Vitamins with Lactobacillus or Poultry Booster, both by Rooster Booster--one goes in the water, and one is added to the feed, whichever is easier for you. As Enola pointed out, worming your chickens may also help the sick girl to gain weight. Valbazen 1/4 ml for a silkie, or 1/2 ml for large chickens given orally once, then repeated in 10 days is very good.
     

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