Chicken won't eat or walk. Help!

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by jomary2013, Feb 24, 2017.

  1. jomary2013

    jomary2013 Out Of The Brooder

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    So today I noticed my chicken didn't walk or eat, she's just sitting. She won't get up and she looks sleepy. She is also pooping watery white/light green. Does anyone know what's wrong? Remedies?
     
  2. azygous

    azygous True BYC Addict

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    Your hen may have an infection.

    But lying down and not eating and acting sleepy are just a few symptoms. Have you encouraged her to try to walk to see if she is unbalanced, unsteady, or otherwise walking abnormally? Those additional symptoms would point in an entire different direction.

    How about her crop? Have you felt it? Is it full? If so, is it squishy? Is it empty except for a hard small lump? Is the crop empty in the morning or still full? Crop problems can lead a hen to be lethargic.

    Have you given her a thorough examination to look for infected sores? Even a bad case of bumble foot on the bottom of the foot could produce these symptoms if the staph infection has become serious.

    In the absence of the aforementioned symptoms, if all she's doing is being lethargic, I would treat her with a round of antibiotics. This is what I do in my flock when a hen suddenly behaves lethargic and refuses to eat.
     
  3. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive True BYC Addict

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    How old is she? Is she laying eggs?
     
  4. jomary2013

    jomary2013 Out Of The Brooder

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    She's gonna turn 4 this year. And she hasn't layed eggs since last year but she seemed fine.
     
  5. jomary2013

    jomary2013 Out Of The Brooder

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    I did encourage her to walk but she was walking very unbalanced and her crop just feels like a small bump, usually the crop would be empty in the morning. What antibiotics should I give her?
     
  6. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive True BYC Addict

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    I'm sure that Azygous will get back to you. She could be suffering from a reproductive disorder at her age. It can be hard to tell that from other problems, but internal laying, egg yolk peritonitis, or salpingitis can be common in older hens. Some signs of these can be sleepiness, lying around in one place or a reluctance to walk, odd gait, may be standoffish or separate herself alone, loss of weight through the breast bone area, sometimes a full lower belly from egg masses inside or tightness from fluid, and not laying. You might try some antibiotics to help her symptoms, but they aren't usually successful long term for a recovery. E.coli bacteria is frequently involved in EYP or salpingitis. Baytril (enrofloxacin) is an antibiotic that is banned in poultry in the US, but can be used to treat EYP and E.coli, as long as the chicken will not be used for meat. Here is where to buy it: https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/959119/baytril-enrofloxacin-sources

    While this could be what is ailing her, don't stop looking for other possible causes. Crop impaction or sour crop as Azygous pointed out, or bumblefoot or a leg injury could be possibilities. Offer her some chopped egg or canned tuna, and most hens will eat a mash of chicken feed mixed with a lot of water. Probiotics or plain yogurt if her feed does not already contain them are good for her. Here is some reading about reproductive problems:
    http://scoopfromthecoop.nutrenaworld.com/tag/laying-issues/
    http://www.theveterinaryexpert.com/backyard-poultry/egg-yolk-peritonitis/
    https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/526089/egg-yolk-peritonitis
     
  7. azygous

    azygous True BYC Addict

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    It's hard to nail down a diagnosis in chickens without lab testing. Most of the time, we try to figure out where the symptoms point and go in that direction and treat for wherever we end up.

    I try to look at the simplest explanation for the symptoms I'm seeing, but at the same time being aware that some symptoms are for something that could have a more serious ailment behind it. Sour crop is one of these.

    A hen may be acting lethargic, and it may be from an infected sore on its body somewhere, not necessarily a disease with a scary name.

    I've tried to give you some things to look at so you can hopefully narrow it down and treat for something more specific than some ambiguous infection. Antibiotics are a last resort, mainly because each time we use them on a chicken, next time they become a little less effective.

    Your hen may have impacted crop, not an infection at all. If this hen has had an impaction for a while before you noticed it, she may be weak from malnourishment and that's why she's acting lethargic. Olive oil or coconut oil introduced into her crop and massaged to break up the impaction should get her back on track again. I would try that first before starting her on an antibiotic, which may not even be necessary.
     

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