Chicken goes pale and lethargic overnight, please help!


10 Years
Aug 29, 2010
Any help is greatly appreciated. Our favorite chicken Magpie fell terribly ill overnight.

1) What type of bird , age and weight (does the chicken seem or feel lighter or thinner than the others.)
Barred rock Hen 1 year 1 month old, normal weight.

2) What is the behavior, exactly.
Bird was normal and spunky yesterday became ill overnight. Behavior is lethargy.

3) How long has the bird been exhibiting symptoms?
Since this morning, beginning overnight. Bird has been exhibiting symptoms of lethargy, pale combs and waddles that are cool to the touch. Lack of appetite.

4) Are other birds exhibiting the same symptoms?

5) Is there any bleeding, injury, broken bones or other sign of trauma.
None I'm able to view

6) What happened, if anything that you know of, that may have caused the situation.
Unsure, happened overnight. Could she have found something in the yard that made her sick?

7) What has the bird been eating and drinking, if at all.
Currently she will not eat her layer pellets. She is drinking some water with vitamins and probiotics added. We did get her to eat some scrambled egg mixed with yogurt and chick feed. She ate it, but not heartily.
she has been on a diet of Purina Layena Plus Omega-3 pellets. Free choice grit and oyster shell. They typically get daily free range time outside their enclosure. Occasional treats include meal-worms, tomatoes, scrambled egg.

8) How does the poop look? Normal? Bloody? Runny? etc.
Poop was normal. As seen in the photo below started solid and went runny and abnormal through the night. Today her dropping have been mainly urates, runny watery and white, and small.

9) What has been the treatment you have administered so far?
Quarantine in cage alone with layer feed and water with probiotics and electrolytes. Rubbed "vetex" under wings on waddles and comb. Feed her two drops of vetex as well.

10 ) What is your intent as far as treatment? For example, do you want to treat completely yourself, or do you need help in stabilizing the bird til you can get to a vet?
Would take to a vet if anyone thinks treatment is possible. We have a vet that will treat chickens but diagnosis of anything is elusive to vets in my experience. We will try some treatment at home too.

11) If you have a picture of the wound or condition, please post it. It may help.
Pictures posted of bird and enclosure.

12) Describe the housing/bedding in use
Bedding includes sand, pine savings, and compressed pellets.

-I have not been able to find any mites or louse on my birds currently
-I know for a fact she laid a egg yesterday afternoon. I have a small number of 5 birds, and all laid yesterday.
-Until overnight/this morning she was acting normally. We hold and handle our birds frequently and know them individually.
-Her crop was empty this morning, but felt small, contracted, scrunched up and angry.
- After she ingested some food her crop relaxed and felt normal.
-Her abdomen did not feel unusual to me, but I'm not an expert.
-face is clean, no swelling or discharge
-no heavy breathing or ratteling

Close up 9/10/13 of Magpie

Close up 9/10/13 of Magpie

A comparative photo. Magpie the sick bird is in the background. You can see that she is very pale compared to our other hen.

Her droppings under the roost this morning. There are a few "normal" poos, but then they degrade to "abnormal". (This photo is upside down. Each time I upload it, somehow it is turned in the process, I can't figure out how to fix)

Very pale and lethargic

I have not been able to locate any mites our louse currently on my flock. Her legs also look good to me.

Her vent seems normal but very pale. you can see some of the abnormal waters poos leaking out. (sorry if photo is too graphic)

She is now in quarantine. Drinking some, eating little.

Multiple sources of water provided. The two cups have free choice grit and oyster shell available.

Two feeders like this one are available with layer pellets. I only fill them as fast as they eat it to keep their food fresh.

A fan runs 24/7 too help cool them and to help relieve them from biting insects/gnats.

They have a large enclosure that is scooped at least once daily of any poo. I have a total of 5 birds.
Anyone? Everyone stumped, or am I not posting in the correct fashion? Is there more information that could be helpful that I might be missing?
Still hopeful for any suggestions or responses. Checked on her again today. Still will not eat her layer pellets. Did get her to eat more scrambled eggs with yogurt and chick feed. She is still very pale and lethargic.
Not molting yet, but wondering if she could be going into a molt, and could that be a possible cause to this stress.

They were all wormed last in June
They were wormed with a round of Fenbendazole from the vet and then safegaurd 10 days after. I was pretty sure we had some gapeworm earlier this year. One of my light brahmas had exhibited signs that point to gapes.
I have some safegaurd should I put some on bread and individually treat her? I was trying to wait until they went into molt this fall to worm. But I can do it now to the whole flock if that could be a possible culprit to her issues. May just have to forfeit my eggs for a while.

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