Could really use some advice about a hen... and her poopy symptoms

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by NewFLChickenMama, Oct 12, 2019.

  1. NewFLChickenMama

    NewFLChickenMama In the Brooder

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    Hi Everyone,

    I have a 14 month old easter egger, Tilly (Attila the Hen) who has a constant problem with lose poop. I know chickens poop a lot, but what she produces is nothing like the other 5 hens. She varies from watery with little other content, to a watery diarrhea like splash... yes I said splash, cause my girl has -range- when she lets fly. That stuff is under pressure, and you'd better be ready to dodge if she's aimed in your direction! Rarely would one of the specimens have enough 'substance' to have any form at all. She's been like this from the very beginning, and I've tried plenty of suggestions. Pumpkin seeds as a natural dewormer, Durafend Type C medicated feed etc. Yogurt regularly - full fat and plain. She eats like there is no tomorrow, and pretty much lives for the morning grape and evening blueberry snacks. She's on layer feed for the majority of her diet though, with access to crushed egg shells as she wants them.

    She drinks so much at once that it will occasionally reappear from her nose, but that's been going on from the beginning too, and doesn't slow her down at all.

    The runniness of her poop did cause her flockmates to have far to much interest in her butt (it mats the feathers and I soak her lower half in warm water in a dishpan to loosen it from her feathers- can I say thank you enough to the people that make latex gloves?? I think not!) Her crew did pluck her tush bare and raw- it was fine one morning, and 4 hours later it was a bloody mess. She became a house baby to recuperate after that 6 months ago, and that's allowed me to watch her really closely.

    Aside from the feather loss of a light molt, her comb is pale but otherwise she looks good- about half of her butt feathers have grown back- Good for her, more soaking time for me. She goes outside for about half the day on Saturday and Sunday, with her own private section of the run and a little house all her own to keep her safe from her friends. During the week, she really only gets outside time when I get home before dark, so it's an hour or less each day with the shortening daylight.

    She's a very solid bird who seems otherwise to be perfectly ok. Eyes are sharp and clear, she cheers the other ladies on loudly and enthusiastically when it's egg song time, and she seems to be in absolutely no distress.

    The only other symptom I can report is that she doesn't lay often. Once every 2 weeks perhaps, but that is a more recent development and the timing matches her feather molt. Head feathers only... and they're starting to come back in. She looked a lot like a bird version of Skeletor there for a while! I'm ok with no eggs. She's a pet first. Donating breakfast is just a side benefit from my ladies.

    I have not been able to find a vet willing to take a chicken client... can you kind folks give me your thoughts and ideas? Again- she's a pet. As long as she's happy, I don't care if she never lays another egg. I just want her to be healthy, and perhaps be able to safely rejoin the rest of the flock someday.

    Thanks for reading and any input you may have to help Tilly.
     
  2. Wyorp Rock

    Wyorp Rock Enabler

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    I'm not sure if there's anything you can "fix" here. From your description, she has been like this from the "beginning" - I'm going to assume she always had loose stool as a chick, she has always eaten well and has always drank a lot. Sounds like this is "normal" for her.

    Since you have tried numerous things, I would be hesitant to suggest anything else.
     
  3. NewFLChickenMama

    NewFLChickenMama In the Brooder

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    Apr 20, 2019
    East Central Florida, USA
    Thank you Wyorp Rock. I appreciate your thoughts- these are my first chickens and while I feel like I read a ton about this/them, I'd hate to miss doing something that would help.

    One other thing that I suspect is unrelated- From her egg #1, every one has always been elongated. Long and narrower than the other ladies' and noticeable enough that I tilt them in the cardboard cartons so the lids will close.

    Thanks again - There is so much to know and learn :)
     
  4. Morrigan

    Morrigan Free Ranging

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    The only thing I might do was to take some of her poop to a vet for a fecal float. If nothing odd shows up there, you can chalk it up to an idiosyncrasy of this hen and stop worrying about it.
     
  5. NewFLChickenMama

    NewFLChickenMama In the Brooder

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    Apr 20, 2019
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    Hi Morrigan-
    Is that fecal float the same process done for dogs and cats, so my 'regular' vet could do that test regardless of the species? That would be great!

    I'll reach out tomorrow!
    Thanks for the great idea!
     
    Sequel likes this.
  6. Morrigan

    Morrigan Free Ranging

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    Yes it is. I've heard that some vets won't do it for chickens, not sure why. Hopefully your vet will be able to help you.
     
    Sequel likes this.
  7. NewFLChickenMama

    NewFLChickenMama In the Brooder

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    Apr 20, 2019
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    Reporting back- my usual vet won't do it. "Don't see livestock" and "wouldn't know what to look for" were the comments from the vet tech. I'm making more calls though. Thanks for the idea!
     
    Sequel likes this.
  8. Morrigan

    Morrigan Free Ranging

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    That's too bad. There are mail in kits as well, but the timeframe may be longer than you want. For example: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B000J5SOZ4/?tag=backy-20.
     

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