Cream Legbar hen lethargic and losing balance in hot weather

MelonHeadSeb

Songster
5 Years
May 26, 2014
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I posted this in the wrong forum so I'll just re post it here

I live in South East UK and it is very hot for us at the moment at 30°C (85°F) and one of my Cream Legbar hens has stopped eating or drinking much today after sitting down for a while under the trees. She walked very slowly back up to the run and I thought she was struggling with the heat or something, so I dipped her in cool water but I can't see a difference so far. She was fine yesterday and has been laying nearly daily until now. She is now standing in the run and will occasionally act as if she's about to tip over. What could be wrong? As far as I know it may not be related to the heat at all.

Also I can feel her crop but it feels either empty or just full of air
 

Eggcessive

Enabler
Premium Feather Member
9 Years
Apr 3, 2011
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How old is she? If you can get some electrolytes to add to her water, and encourage her to drink, that may help if she is dehydrated. Offer her some chopped egg and a small bowl of wet chicken feed made soupy with water. A puffy balloon-like crop can be a sign of sour crop, especially if she has a sour odor from her mouth. What are her droppings like? Could she be egg bound, or have been kept from food and water by the others?
 

MelonHeadSeb

Songster
5 Years
May 26, 2014
148
19
111
Not sure how old she is, but I think she's at least 3. I tried to separate her with food and water and she ate a little bit of corn and mealworms, but I haven't seen her drink. I thought about sour crop too but her breath doesn't smell at all. Her poo is quite foamy but seems to be normal in colour, although there is also not much of it.

It seems to have started when we got 3 new chickens that someone gave us (I have 8 and the run is still definitely big enough) but they are now higher than her on the pecking order and she has been clucking as if she were broody since they arrived. Now one of the other chickens from the original flock (who was already above her) has started attacking her a lot more and I have no idea why.
 

Eggcessive

Enabler
Premium Feather Member
9 Years
Apr 3, 2011
54,083
44,416
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southern Ohio
Then I would place her in a crate with her own food and water for a couple of days to watch her, and give her plenty of fluids. Sometimes it takes time to figure out the problem. Hopefully she is just weak from not eating/drinking enough, and not something contagious from the new ones. Probiotic plain yogurt (a tsp or 5 gm) daily and some chopped egg may help. Worming could help if her droppings remain foamy.
 

MelonHeadSeb

Songster
5 Years
May 26, 2014
148
19
111
She seems fine today. Not completely sure what was going on, whether it was the heat or what. I think it might have actually been from their water bowl, because I remember when I topped it up a bunch of beetles were in it, and this happened last summer too and made the water very dirty. I have cleaned it now though.
 

Eggcessive

Enabler
Premium Feather Member
9 Years
Apr 3, 2011
54,083
44,416
1,202
southern Ohio
I am glad that she is feeling better today. For what it is worth, I always keep more than one water bowl out for my chickens, so everyone gets a chance to drink. They love flat pans of water during hot summer weather where they drink and alao stand in it to cool their legs.
 

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