Does my chicken have worms?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by jak2002003, Jan 12, 2013.

  1. jak2002003

    jak2002003 Overrun With Chickens

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    I was given 2 hens by a friend who did not want them anymore.

    I kept them apart from mine (good job I did as one developed respirator disease and died). The other one was really healthy and after 5 weeks I moved her into my main flock.

    Its now one month later and I was doing some work in the run, and I had to pick her up to move her out of my way. I was shocked to feel how think she was, I could feed her breast bone.

    All the other chickens are fat and healthy. She does not seem to be ill at all and is eating and pooping normally and is lively.

    If she had worms would that cause weight loss? She is not fluffed up or acting sick and her eyes are clear and bright.
     
  2. MarcoPollo

    MarcoPollo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    She may just be a small hen. I have 6 that are the same breed. One hen is very small at about 5 pounds, and the others are about 7-8 pounds. As long as you are making sure she is getting a good diet, then you are doing the best for her from that aspect. Is she bullied or chased off the feed by the others? Does she free range?
    My biggest hen has a prominent breastbone. She is plump, but her breastbone just feels weird when I pick her up. It may just be the way they are structurally, lol.
    You could call around to see if there is a veterinary clinic in your area that will test a sample of her chicken poop to see if there are worms or parasites. I had that done recently and it is great peace of mind to see the results come back negative. That way there is no need to give dewormer unnecessarily.
    Good thing you did a proper quarantine with new chickens. Certainly was the right thing to do!
     
  3. myfinefeatheredfriends

    myfinefeatheredfriends Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Since she is a new hen it may just be that she is on the lower ring of the pecking order. Those ones are often thinner than the more established hens. I guess it wouldn't hurt to try to worm her by putting Wazine in her drinking water but I don't think that is what is wrong.
     
  4. jak2002003

    jak2002003 Overrun With Chickens

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    Thanks for the advise. I was watching her today and she is still acting healthy. She has lost weight because she was much fatter when I first got her. There is food in the coop all day - both layers pellets and chick crumbs. I will watch tomorrow to see if she is being chased off them by the other chickens, but they don't seem to pick on her.

    Is the de wormer safe for chicks too? I have mixed ages in my flock, from week old chicks, pullets, and adults.
     
  5. MarcoPollo

    MarcoPollo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have never given a dewormer to chickens, so I don't know what age they can start taking it.
    The stress of being new to the flock could have caused the weight loss.
    Maybe someone else will have advice on what else could cause weight loss.
    As long as she's normal otherwise, I'd keep a close eye on how much she's actually eating and maybe try to give her some time to eat when she's away from the others.
     
  6. ChickensAreSweet

    ChickensAreSweet Heavenly Grains for Hens

    I have read not to worm chickens less than 18 weeks of age unless they need treatment for worms because of organs still developing. Worms can cause weight loss yes. Some vets will do a fecal float test for worms for a small fee but false negatives are possible. You might want to do as Marco said and just check the poo, since worming medications are VERY hard on them. It can kill a weak hen.

    I say that since the hen isn't acting sick and doesn't have diarrhea.
     

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