Egg-bound ...do they survive? - please tell me YES THEY CAN!!

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by charpcharp, Jan 25, 2009.

  1. charpcharp

    charpcharp Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 25, 2009
    Good day to all - I'm new and a little shaky at the forum thing, please bare with me.

    My Australorp chicken (not yet a year old) is eggbound. I took her in on Saturday about 12 pm as she was lethargic and clearly not right. Since then, myself and my partner have kept her in a warm and quiet environment with access to food and water and dry bedding. We've taken advice of past posts by giving her warm baths (for up to about 10 minutes), massaging her abdomen, "oiling" her vent and steaming her - each time getting her as dry as poss afterwards (with a hairdrier, who would have thought they'd like it?!).

    Last night about 6 pm, with close inspection on her maximum pushes, an egg-type thing was visable, though grey and not very hard. I took a pencil (clean and unused) and pierced the egg. I know this could cause danger but I felt it might release the pressure and help.

    Right enough, two egg yolks and whites spewed from her bum and the swelling seemed to be relieved. BUT I am now very fearful that she
    a) has the remains of shell in her as she has not seemed to pass any in her poo and
    b) that the shell may have caused damage to her insides and
    c) that she won't be able to pass her next egg.

    This is, I am certain, her first attempt at laying as she is the youngest of 3 - by I guess about a month. The other two lay happily and are bright and breezy as normal. We didn't expect our little one (Betty) to be laying as we still thought her too young...

    She doesn't seem as developed as the other two. They are all Australorps (forgive spelling!).

    Can anyone advise on next step/what to watch for/any further things we can try? I'm really not the type of person to give up on an animal if something can be done to help. We are considering going to vets tomorrow for some antibiotics if they even provide them - I'm not sure. We managed to feed her a dose of vermex but other than that she's not eating really anything.

    Please help, many thanks
    Jen

    PS my partner just phoned to say she's just been sick - kind of foamy he said. Any ideas? Other than that, she had had a quiet night and morning as far as we could tell.
     
    Last edited: Jan 25, 2009
  2. smith2

    smith2 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Paris, TN
    It is hard to tell what will happen after such trauma to the bird. Sometimes they do pull through and sometimes not. Keep her quiet and check on her often. Separate her if you can and give it some time. You may keep trying to remove pieces of shell if you can. I sounds like she tried to lay a double yolker as a first egg. I have had some pull through like this and others not. Good Luck.
     
    Last edited: Jan 25, 2009
  3. Ferngully

    Ferngully Chillin' With My Peeps

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    N.E. Florida
    First I would like to [​IMG] I am sorry your first post is of such a serious nature. Unfortunately, I don't have any answers for you as I am new and learning myself. There is a search function at the top of the page, it sounds as though you may have discovered it. Try different variations of eggbound, passing, prevention, infection, any sort of words together in those parameters. There is a wealth of members with vast knowledge of care here and I am certain that someone, or many will help you with your question. They are all so friendly here. Most will be on later, as it is early. [​IMG] for Betty. Perhaps you could try a softened oatmeal, or softened with water her regular feed, to make it seem more like a treat for her to encourage her to eat. I do this for my hens occassionaly as their "treat" and they have no idea that it is just their regular nutritious feed. Good luck with your little girl.
     
  4. charpcharp

    charpcharp Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 25, 2009
    Thank you both Smith2 and Ferngully for your gentle responses. I was preparing for the worst but both have reassured me.

    We'll keep trying and I will keep searching for more advice.

    In the meantime Smith2, I wondered if you could tell me - of the cases where you have seen a chook survive this... has the bird passed an egg herself eventually and then gone on to live?

    ie. is it the case where if she manages to pass an egg, she'll live - if she doesn't manage it, she'll die? I imagine it's a very individual thing but any elaboration would be gratefully received.

    J
     
  5. oldbuzzard

    oldbuzzard Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 14, 2008
    cuba, new york
    [​IMG] sorry it has to be because of your sick hen. i have read that keep hen in dark area to stop egg production while she recovers. as our friends to the west wake up you will get more great advice here. good luck![​IMG]
     
  6. Katy

    Katy Flock Mistress

    In all the years I've chickens I've only had one get eggbound and that was last spring. I was lucky and after a warm soak she passed the egg on her own. After a few days in the dark with a warm soak, and putting Preperation H on her daily she was no longer protruding. I turned her out and she's been fine since then.
     
  7. smith2

    smith2 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:It depends on two things. One, some hens have a tendency for internal laying. If so, they may lay a normal egg eventually, but most don't. Most internal layers will die on their own after a period of from several weeks to several months. I have had 2 internal layers and both died.

    Two, if you can get the shell, etc. cleaned out and her egg tract is clear, she should go ahead and lay a regular egg at some point in the next week or two. If she is going to be an oversized egg layer, she will continue to have some problems, but if she doesn't prolapse, she should go on and lay eggs.
     
  8. smith2

    smith2 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    You might not know what a prolapse is. A prolapse is where the egg is too big or the hen too small, and the vent pushes itself to the outside of the body cavity. These can also be fixed with gentle measures. Check the "search" function for prolapse treatments, if she should do that.

    If regular hens haven't started laying by about 24-30 weeks, you may have an internal layer. I had one that lived about 5 months but never layed a regular egg. When she died, I did a necropsy and she was full of yucky, unlaid eggs. They will often swell some and have fluid in the cavity when they are internal layers. There is really nothing you can do for them.

    Let's just hope she had trouble with that first big egg. She may go on and be fine. I have had several have trouble with the first egg and then do fine after that.
     
  9. birdlover

    birdlover Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 11, 2007
    Northern Va.
    I'm sorry you're having this problem with Betty. If you're like me, you're worried sick and I usually end up taking mine to the vet. Depending on where you live, it can sometimes be tricky finding one that will take chickens. I go to an "exotic animal" vet and they love when they get a chicken as a patient. Yes, she will need antibiotics it sounds like. The egg she was trying to pass may have been a "shell-less" egg in which case there would be no shell inside her and shell-less eggs are harder for them to pass. The foamy regurgitation doesn't sound good. What is vermex? Could that have caused her to get sick? Best wishes to you and Betty. I hope she recovers and leads a long, happy life.
     
  10. charpcharp

    charpcharp Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 25, 2009
    Thanks oldbuzzard for the welcome and the advice - we'll try to darken her environment.
    Katy - do you know what the preparation H treatment actually does to the skin/muscles or does it just act as a relief? Can I just check, is this the HUMAN treatment preparation H or am I just totally ignorant on this?!

    And Smith2 - thanks for your lengthy response, I really appreciate it. And through my recent research, I was aware of a prolapse.

    I feel really guilty that something had to go wrong before actually finding all this out though. I did some basic reading before getting the chickens but it was my partner that did the most in depth research! And I do appreciate that there are lots of posts about egg bound chickens out there, I've been trying to get round them all in case there's new advice hidden in any of them.

    In the meantime, if anyone has more ideas they are greatly welcomed!
     

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