Can't figure out what is wrong with this hen. EDIT: Defintely ill.

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by haemony, Mar 23, 2013.

  1. haemony

    haemony Chillin' With My Peeps

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    This is Stella. She is a 2 year old Partridge Plymouth Rock. For a week now she has been standing around all huddled and droopy. I have included two pictures. Can't figure out what is wrong with her.

    She has no apparent injuries, no bumblefoot, no swelling anywhere, and is not egg bound. Her crop is a bit squishy sometimes but not enough to explain this. It does not seem overly full or totally empty. I massage the crop and feed her as if she has sour crop just in case. She has fresh water with ACV and she does drink. She eats very little and will not eat her feed. She will eat a small amount of boiled egg, chopped spinach, or yogurt. That's it. Nothing else.

    She walks oddly, kind of like (excuse me) a baby with a load in his diaper as if her hips do not move normally. She's really slow and seems to have trouble walking but she tries to keep up with the flock anyway. She follows them around all day...slowly. Sometimes she whines if she loses them or if they move around too fast. She roosts. She preens. She does not keep apart from the flock but she does go to roost early. She is not getting picked on at all. No one bothers her. She's a sweet little thing. I do not know what to do for her. She gets no worse and no better but she is getting very thin. In the photo she is all puffed up because it is cold.


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    Last edited: Mar 24, 2013
  2. fluffychicken24

    fluffychicken24 Out Of The Brooder

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    My polish crested hen recently died after acting like that for a while. She was hunched up and walked oddly, too. I think you should take her to a livestock or poultry vet as soon as possible.
     
  3. haemony

    haemony Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Did any of your other birds get sick or die? Did you find out what was wrong with her?
     
    Last edited: Mar 23, 2013
  4. yesfantina

    yesfantina Out Of The Brooder

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    I just took my red star to the vet --- very similar symptoms. The x-ray she has a broken egg inside her. Is your girl still laying? Lucy had stopped for a couple weeks... She's on antibiotics and we have our fingers crossed now
     
  5. haemony

    haemony Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks for the response. She has not laid an egg for at least a week. Maybe longer. I'm sorry about your hen and hope she is okay. Poor thing. :( I do not have the option of a vet. I wonder how to tell if there is a broken egg in there. I guess I'll give her a soak today. I didn't feel an egg so I knew she wasn't egg bound but didn't think about a broken egg.
     
  6. haemony

    haemony Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I gave her a good long soak in warm water and epsom salt, greased up a glove and tried gently to see what is what. There was gross sticky goo on her bottom which smelled strongly of ammonia. I cleaned that off. The smell was not coming from inside. Feels blocked but I could get in there without getting rough so I didn't ush it. She was either clenched or clenching. I got her to eat about half a teaspoon of olive oil and a bit of mashed soft boiled egg. Her abdomen feels tight but not like it has an egg in it. I let her wander about the kitchen while she dried off and I used the blow dryer on cool for a bit. She never pooped the entire time so I am concerned about that. Her vent is pulsating now. When I let her back outside with her pals she let out a nickel size bit of yellowy goo. That's it. No poo. Her vent is pulsating. Now I am reading something about egg peritonitis but I have no idea.
     
    Last edited: Mar 24, 2013
  7. Xanadu

    Xanadu Out Of The Brooder

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    I am also worried about my hen, she is puffed up today and not her energetic scratch scratch must find bugs self but standing around looking unhappy. She hasn't laid an egg since day before yesterday. When she does lay it has always been a very fragile egg, so much so that I can barely press on it and it dents easily. What should I do if she has a broken egg inside her? I only have two hens and I really enjoy having them so I hate to lose her. She won't be a year till the end of June. She looks like a white leghorn although I really don't know if that is what she is or not. She is still eating but not enthusiastically. I just went out and gave her a small handfull of freeze dried meal worms (she ate them), a quarter cup of organic layer feed since she wasn't eating the regular layer feed that I was trying to let run out before starting them on the organic, a quarter cup of yogurt which she went after fairly well though not like her usual greedy self and a big handful of chickweed she usually loves which she picked at a little and a small handful of shredded broccolli I bought for my salad she didn't want. She went after the organic feed which I sprinkled on top of the yogurt and seemed surprised by the yogurt but still ate the feed off of it getting some of the yogurt that way and drank some water afterwards while her "sister" which I think may be a black australorpe possibly seems just fine and laid an egg this morning. I am assuming the crop is the lump I feel at the front of the base of their necks and hers is a lump about half the size of my average womans fist. I just brought her inside to my quiet bathroom and have brought in a nesting box and sat her in it and she seems to be sleepy or a little in shock, I don't know what. She was just squatting on the tile floor like she was on her nest before I brought the nest in and she stood up to look at it but just stood there so I slid a finger and then my hand under each foot and lifted her into the nest box and she is just standing there. I gave her maybe a quarter teaspoon of bentonite clay liquid and am going to give her some of her "sisters" egg. I don't know what else to do or if I have even done any of this right. I feel so stupid and helpless.
     
  8. Mykee

    Mykee Chillin' With My Peeps

    Both of you seem to have similar problems, so this information could work for both of you, but I'll start with haemony first:
    Haemony, I had a hen that acted exactly like yours for several weeks. I talked to some more experienced chicken people and did my own research, and landed on internal parasites. I was just going to purchase some ivermectin to see if that would help, but unfortunately an owl got her first. I don't think it would hurt to worm your hen, but be very careful with amounts because too little will cause the worms to become tougher, and too much could kill the hen. Keep her warm so she doesn't spend her energy doing that. The no poo issue kind of works against the diagnosis of worms, because if she had a heavy load of worms it would be more likely for her to have diarrhea. But still, it might be worth a shot.

    Xanadu, Did she seem in shock before you brought her in? The egg shells seem to point to a calcium deficiency, but I can't see how that would explain everything else wrong with her. Try gloving and greasing your hand, then stick a finger up her backside and feel around for an egg. Smell near her beak; if there's a very fermented smell, she may have sour crop.

    Keep me posted on how they both do! I wish I could be of more help. [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Mar 24, 2013
  9. haemony

    haemony Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mykee, thank you for your reply. I appreciate any ideas. So sorry than an owl took your hen.

    Would internal parasites cause a blockage? Her abdomen feels hard and a bit distended right beneath the vent. She is walking awkwardly with one foot turned inward and is obviously in pain. She is in the house now so she is warm. She is stinky again. None of the other hens seem ill. They have no symptoms.

    I let her back out with the flock after her soak but she seemed to decline slightly. She stopped eating and drinking but she did not hide. She stood in the sun with her eyes closed. She did still try to keep up with the flock and went into the coop and then the hen house on her own in the evening. She did not go to roost but stood in the corner with her face against the wall shivering. It is below freezing tonight so I brought her back into the house. I am always torn about removing a hen from the flock. She really seems to want to be with them but I could not leave her on the floor like that and I want to observe her.

    I gave her a dose of epsom salt and some water with a syringe. She ate a few pellets I had smashed up for her but did not drink or poop. She released a bit more yellowy goo. Now she is (hopefully) asleep in a cozy box in a puppy cage with a blanket over it. She has a little food and some water in there with her.
     
    Last edited: Mar 25, 2013
  10. 3 Chicks

    3 Chicks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    So glad you posted this. I have a hen I am keeping an eye on who is exactly what you are describing, Haemony. Today was her first day acting like his and we had a big storm (tornados around us) so I am hoping she will act better tomorrow when things are normal again.
     

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