Chicken Not Acting Like Self

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by kjenks7, Dec 19, 2018.

  1. kjenks7

    kjenks7 In the Brooder

    Jan 29, 2018

    We have a Welsummer that is about 7 months old. Normally when I go into the coop in the morning to give the hens some worms, she runs straight up to the door and is clucking very loudly. We noticed the last couple of days she has been very quiet, moving slowly, and sleeping a lot standing up. Normally she pecks my shoes when I come in and she has not been doing that. I am pretty sure she laid eggs this weekend and Monday. Her comb looks a little pale and droopy, but other than that, appearance wise she looks like herself. Any ideas on what could be wrong with her?

    She's still eating and drinking from what I can tell. I tried feeding her some worms today and she ate a couple but then was uninterested. She spent almost the whole day in the coop on Monday and Tuesday, but today she was out almost the entire day.

    Any feedback would be appreciated! This is our first flock so we aren't sure what could be wrong. Googling things makes me think the worst.

    Attached Files:

  2. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Crossing the Road

    Apr 3, 2011
    southern Ohio
    How does her crop feel—empty and flat, full soft, hard, or puffy? Is she pooping? I would be tempted to confine overnight, just to see some droppings, and if she will eat some cooked egg or wet chicken feed. The crop in her right chest should be empty in the morning, gradually filling up by bedtime.
  3. FarmeRoach

    FarmeRoach In the Brooder

    Dec 18, 2018
    It is great that you have discerned a change in her personality. It is obvious you know your flock well. I agree with checking her crop, but also could she be stressed for some reason? I would monitor her very closely over the next few days, laying her special attention.
  4. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler!

    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    When I have a bird acting 'off' I isolate bird in a wire cage within the coop for a day or you can closely monitor their intake of food and water, crop function(checking at night and in morning before providing more feed), and their poops. Feel their abdomen, from below vent to between legs, for squishy or hard swelling.

    Best to put crate right in coop or run so bird is still 'with' the flock.
    I like to use a fold-able wire dog crate (24"L x 18"W x 21"H) with smaller mesh(1x2) on bottom of crate under tray.
    Then you can put tray underneath crate to better observe droppings without it being stepped in. If smaller mesh is carefully installed, tray can still be used inside crate.

    Have you checked them over real well for mites and/or lice?
    -Google images of lice/mites and their eggs before the inspection so you'll know what you're looking for.
    -Part the feathers right down to the skin around vent, head/neck and under wings.

    Best done well after dark with a strong flashlight/headlight, easier to 'catch' bird and also to check for the mites that live in structure and only come out at night to feed off roosting birds.
    Wipe a white paper towel along the underside of roost to look for red smears(smashed well fed mites).
    FarmeRoach likes this.

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