Egg Bound and In Shock Please Help!!

ChickenLadyRN

Chirping
5 Years
May 21, 2015
10
1
67
I have a 2 year old Rhode Island Red hybrid named Goldie. She is definitely egg bound and I need help. I went to go feed the girls their nightly snack (leftover dinner) and she came out of the coop walking very oddly. I noticed yellowish white diarrhea stuck to her vent feathers.. She stood their for a while then ate one bite of rice and went back in the coop, laid down on the floor below laying boxes - not their norm resting spot.

I set our dog crate/makeshift quarantine up in our basement and brought her in their. She seemed very weak but she did eat some yogurt and ground oatmeal slurry that I had in their for her and drank some water that I put electrolytes in. After examining her vent I discovered a large bulge under her belly towards the vent. I quickly read up on here for advice and went back down and lubed up her vent with Vaseline, then put her in a bath of warm water. We also syringe fed her 2 tums ground up in applesauce during this time. She relaxed in the bath for about 20 minutes. I took her out and lubed up my gloved fingers and tried to get up in her vent hole to see what I could see/do.

I looked/read about vent anatomy before I started but I am not sure that my hen has normal chicken anatomy. I am a RN and know how to look at anatomical features on paper and translate that to what I am seeing before my eyes. It appears to me that Goldie's rectum and egg vent are side by side, not one on top of the other as diagrams show me. It was difficult to stick my finger in either hole and I never felt the actual shell of the egg but I could feel the shape of the egg in either hole. It was like sticking my gloved fingers in two separate gloves that dead ended - I kept expecting to reach an orifice like the cervix that would allow me to gently put my finger through. The hole on her R side kept oozing what I think is broken yolk. Very yellow and I think some albumin mixed in. This hole seemed to dead end a little before my second knuckle of my index finger. The left hole I was able to go down into and it did seem like there was an opening deeper down that I was able to slowly lip my finger into but this caused her pain. I felt awful but I did keep going and while I was able to feel the contour of the egg better - it has a ridge around it - I still had tissue between me and the egg, I did not actually have my finger on the egg. I was able to go much deeper into this hole - I think past my second knuckle on my middle finger. I suspect I was in her intestine. I don't know if any of this makes sense...from what I have read the egg vent is above the rectum.

I tried to manipulate gently on the outside of her abdomen with and without my finger inside, gently trying to milk the egg down. Nothing happened except more yellow coming out from the right hand hole. She became almost limp in my lap during this time and I am afraid she is in shock at this point and will not make it. If I could see the egg I would risk puncturing it, syringing the yolk out and trying to get the shell out but I can't see the egg. It's dropped down to where you would think feeling it, that it would be easy to see but I can't.

I am going to wait a little while and give her another bath. I am hesitant to put my fingers inside of her again as I am afraid I will damage her further. I am afraid the egg is broken and there is probably nothing I can do. I have contemplated killing her to help stop her suffering but I have never had to do this before. Any advice on the most humane way to do this in case I need to go down that road?

Elisha
 

Eggcessive

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Premium Feather Member
10 Years
Apr 3, 2011
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I would give her a human calcium tablet or Tums crushed in some food such as egg or yogurt, or just slip it into the back of her throat to swallow. Calcium can be a cause of egg binding, or laying shell-less eggs. She also could be an internal layer. I would stop the baths, and place her in a warm moist environment, such as in a spare bathroom with the hot water running.
 

ChickenLadyRN

Chirping
5 Years
May 21, 2015
10
1
67
I did try Tums. I tried another bath and massaging her vent, but Goldie died in my lap.

I decided to autopsy her myself to see what I could learn from this sad experience. Unfortunately what I discovered was that Goldie was not egg bound. I am still somewhat confused but what felt like an egg right in her vent I believe was a tumor. It was almost egg shaped, creamy in color. I did dissect this in half, thinking it was a petrified/oddly formed egg of some sort and I was almost convinced it was an organ at first. No yolk, just more creamy but pale colored dense tissue. Her organs otherwise seemed healthy and her gullet/stomach was full of grass and seeds and a a piece of a red pepper from the previous day's supper.

I can't make sense of a couple things though. When I would put my finger in her vent yellow fluid came out, dark yellow like a yolk. I can't explain that if she was not egg bound. And the yellowish diarrhea I found pasted to her vent feathers when I discovered her doing poorly. This came on suddenly. I had watched her take a nice dust bath the day before and eat well. Yet her comb was pale...maybe it had been and I just hadn't noticed.

I just feel guilty like maybe I did more harm than good. She was definitely ill, but if it wasn't an egg binding her up then I worry I may have hastened her death. If it was truly a tumor, I can't imagine it growing so quickly that it blocked her up. She definitely had air and stool in her intestines but I don't know that she had an enormous amount like I would expect from an egg bound hen.

I'm afraid I may never understand her death. I try to take comfort in the fact that I held her in the light of the setting sun before bringing her in to the cellar and that I comforted her with words. Still really sad though.
 

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