9 Years
Jun 24, 2010
Winters, CA
So while researching topics to get an idea of what's wrong with my hen, I noticed someone mentioned compost. Is there something bad about compost? My hens frequently dust bathe in my planters which are full of composted dirt. My girl is not able to keep her balance and she'll lay on her side and stretch her legs out. She can't seem to stand up straight, she has to sit back on her hocks.

I'm depserate, I don't know what's wrong with her. She definetely gets upset when I touch her legs, so it doesn't seem to be a paralysis issue (apparently she can feel them if she keeps pulling them away). Could the compost have anything to do with this??
1) What type of bird , age and weight. Delaware, about 9 weeks, not sure of weight but she's a big girl
2) What is the behavior, exactly. Not standing up when standing still. She can run/walk for short spurts, but once she comes to a stop, she falls back on her hocks. She also has a hard time staying balanced.
3) How long has the bird been exhibiting symptoms? I first noticed on Saturday (10-2-10)
4) Are other birds exhibiting the same symptoms? No
5) Is there any bleeding, injury, broken bones or other sign of trauma. Not that I have found. She does get really irritated if I move/touch her legs.
6) What happened, if anything that you know of, that may have caused the situation. I can only imagine that she hurt herself coming down from the roost.
7) What has the bird been eating and drinking, if at all. Eating chick starter, grapes and drinking water w/vitamin B-12 complex mixed in
8) How does the poop look? Normal? Bloody? Runny? etc. Runny
9) What has been the treatment you have administered so far? I have started the vit B therapy, crushing one pill up and putting in her feed, also putting it in her water. I have been keeping her isolated so that she can rest.
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? I would li ke to treat her myself, since I don't have the money to take her to a vet. But if it comes to it, I will take her in.
11) If you have a picture of the wound or condition, please post it. It may help. See video below:

12) Describe the housing/bedding in use. I have a long run with two coops (one at each end). All 5 hens insist on cramming in to one coop, and they don't use the ladder, they fly up and then fly/fall/jump down. Ground cover is just bark/dirt and some pine shavings. I clean the poo from the coops every other day and also rake the ground twice a week. They have been knocking their water over a lot lately, so it's possible that she was having a hard time getting fluids.

ETA: They all love to take dirt baths in my garden. So I put a large wooden planter box in their run and filled it with compost from the hardware store. I just did this on Thursday so I'm wondering if it has something to do with it. This all came on very quickly!!
Last edited:

New posts New threads Active threads

Top Bottom