Emaciated Hens

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by jak2002003, Apr 8, 2012.

  1. jak2002003

    jak2002003 Overrun With Chickens

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    Please can anyone help me? I purchased 3 hens about 2 weeks ago. They are silky chickens. They looked very healthy and clean in the shop, and I was not able to handle then as they were put in a box for me.

    When I got home (2 hours drive away) I picked them up out of the box and was shocked to find they were just bags of bones. I really can not feel any meat on then or muscle. The breast bone is sticking out and I can feel it going right up into the body!!!!

    I can't drive as I am disabled and a neighbour took me back to the shop with the hens. The owner said they just need feeding up as they did not get enough food from the person he got then from. I took them back and have been feeding them up with scrambled eggs, chick started crumbs mixed with water and anything else I can get them to eat.

    They are acting really lively, eating well, behaving normally, but not putting on any weight at all. Their droppings are loose and are orange brown colour and very smelly though. I thought this might be because of all the soft mushy things I was feeding them and the eggs.

    I don't understand why they are acting like they are so healthy. Its too late to take them back for a refund and I am attached to them now.

    I got my neighbour to take me to the vet with them, only to be told they don't have any medicine for chickens! I have cycled to my feed stores and non of them sell chicken medicine either!!!!! The big vets is in the city an hour away.........but I don't want to ask my neighbour any more. I am so upset. Have you any ideas what I can do or why they are like this?
     
  2. jak2002003

    jak2002003 Overrun With Chickens

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    Oh I should add they are pullets ... but nearly full grown I think.
     
  3. tgblldog70

    tgblldog70 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    stress can cause loose poops, do you order stuff online? if you do order a probiotic for your chickens it goes in their water, get the good bacteria in their tummys will help. Also their is electrolytes that you can add to their water also. If they are eating that is good silkies are slow growers too I have to assume its bc they are on the smaller size. Just keep doing what you are doing.
     
  4. jak2002003

    jak2002003 Overrun With Chickens

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    thank you. Do you think if they have worms or a sickness they will be acting ill too? I just can't understand why they are so active and alert. How long do you think it will take for them to get fatter? I will order the stuff you recommend off the internet.
     
  5. TeamChaos

    TeamChaos Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 8, 2009
    I think if they had the usual gut worms, you would have seen them in the poop by now.
    It'll take a while for your girls to start to thicken up because you're feeding them good, healthy foods as opposed to things to bulk them up for meat weight. You won't want to feed them too much of something like cracked corn or scratch, a.k.a. "chicken candy", just to have them bulk up quickly as it can lead to health problems down the road.
    You say they are "nearly full grown", it's possible that they are in that awkward "teenaged" stage where everything looks a little weird. I'm glad you're taking such good care of them, it sounds like you're on the right track!
     
  6. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble

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    I dont believe it's worms at all, otherwise they would be lethargic, contrary to what you stated that they are eating well. Continue feeding them as others have mentioned in this thread. Dont expect them to put on weight and fill out overnight, give them time. Add some ACV to their water.
     
  7. jak2002003

    jak2002003 Overrun With Chickens

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    Thanks for all the advise. Yes, I don't think its worm either....I have looked in their poop and there are no worm or worm segments in there. If it was worms causing them to be so emaciated they would have to have millions in them, and I am sure I would see some in the poop.

    Also mites or lice and other parasites would drain their energy and they would seem ill.

    Il will keep feeding them the chick started food mixed with a little water, and also a mashed up hard boiled egg each day.

    I got some pro biotic powder off the internet and will give that a try. I will also give them all a bath today with a insecticidal shampoo. Then I can inspect them really closely.

    Any ideas what other foods can fatten them up quickly? I can not stress how horribly thin they are. I hate picking them up as I can just feel sharp bones. I hope they get better soon.
     
  8. WooingWyandotte

    WooingWyandotte Overrun With Chickens

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    Too fatten them up a bit, you could feed them scraps after each meal. It would give them variety in their diet and limit food waste too.
     

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