Emergency help sick hen!!

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Beauty99, Jan 20, 2019.

  1. Beauty99

    Beauty99 Chirping

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    Hi i have a hen age ( 1 year and 8 month) she used to be so active but yesterday i noticed she isn’t eating just walking around and going inside to her place sit and does nothing, doesn’t eat or drink, her comb looks kinda dark blue and i noticed changes in her poop, which is completely white and kinda yellowish, these days were snowing and cold so i kept her inside, temperature here is 7 C in day and -2 C at night , the pics are below, please help me what is the natural way to treat her, p.s/ she lives alone and she was breathing deeply
     

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    Last edited: Jan 20, 2019
  2. rebrascora

    rebrascora Free Ranging

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    She is passing mostly urates (the white stuff) which are the equivalent of our urine. This indicates that not enough food is passing through her system. There are a number of possible reasons for this, the most common one being a blockage somewhere in her digestive system. It may be a crop problem (impaction or sour crop) or lower down in her gut.... often a reproductive problem (which hens are sadly very prone to) will constrict the gut and prevent faeces being passed.

    Her comb colour suggests she has a problem oxygenating her blood, so it may be her heart or respiratory system are compromised. Does she show any respiratory distress... open mouth breathing for instance when handled, exerting herself etc ?

    Things to check are:-

    her crop function .... if she is eating very little then her crop is likely empty. If it is not, remove access to food at night and check it in the morning. If it is empty then we can rule out a crop problem, if it is not then it indicates there is a blockage somewhere in her digestive tract.... it may be a crop problem or further through her system.

    feel her abdomen.... cup your hand between her legs and feel for fullness there and below her vent. This may be difficult to assess when you don't have any other birds to feel and compare but the flesh should feel slightly slack, not full and distended. Often birds that are soiling themselves have some swelling there preventing their poop from falling clear of their feathers.

    Does she walk with a wide stance..... more like a waddle.

    When was the last time she laid an egg?

    What do you feed her ... main feed and treats and how much does she normally get?

    If it is a problem with her heart then be careful about how you handle her so that she isn't overly stressed. I would trim away the soiled feathers or if she is comfortable being handled and trusts you, a warm Epsom Salt's shallow bath/soak to clean her back end up and then blow dry with a hair drier... most birds find it relaxing once they get over the initial fear of being in water. Obviously you want the water to be at a comfortable temperature both for you and her.... a washing up bowl or large trug/tote are ideal. It may be a good idea to do an internal exam whilst she is soaking by inserting a gloved lubricated finger gently into her vent an inch or two. This may cause her to poop which I know is a bit gross but pooping will make her feel a bit better if there is a blockage. You are feeling for an egg or any fullness or blockage inside her. This diagram of a hen's anatomy may help you to understand what you are feeling...
    chicken_anatomy_eng_small.gif

    If you can get back to us with answers to the above questions and perhaps some photos of her back end once you have washed or trimmed and cleaned her that would be good as sometimes you can see swelling when the feathers are damp or trimmed.
     
    Eggcessive likes this.
  3. Beauty99

    Beauty99 Chirping

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    Thanks for the reply, yes she is opening her mouth breathing so deeply, she eats chicken food and vegetables, her crop is empty since yesterday , yesterday she was picking food and then dropping it, today she isn’t even looking for food or drink, she hasn’t laid egg since summer but in autumn she had few eggs but they were shell less eggs, she sometimes close her eyes , her butt is always down and open ready for diarrhea which is white, i will wash her with warm bath and take pictures while she’s wet , but i feel like she has trouble breathing if it was about her respiratory what can i do for her? Also i feeled between her legs were too tight and full
     
  4. rebrascora

    rebrascora Free Ranging

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    Ok, it sound like the problem is abdominal, possibly a reproductive disorder or perhaps ascites (water belly), which can be linked to a reproductive disorder or other ailments like Fatty Liver Haemorrhagic Syndrome which is more likely in larger breeds like Sussex.
    If it is ascites, the fluid can be drained either by yourself if you feel confident of inserting a needle about half an inch into her abdomen and drawing off fluid or by a vet. This should give her some short term and quite instant relief but the fluid will most likely return over the coming weeks and need draining again and draining comes with the risk of introducing infection or putting her into shock, both of which can kill, but in her current condition, she will almost certainly die without some intervention..... not eating and drinking will usually kill within a few days.
    I cannot be sure that ascites is the problem without examining her, so a veterinary visit would be best, but I understand that some vets will not see/treat chickens and some people do not have the funds to seek veterinary treatment for their hens. Does her belly feel like a water balloon?
    I will attach a link to a You Tube video which explains in layman's terms how to drain a chicken with ascites.... a large gauge short sterile hypodermic needle (No 16 or 17 about an inch long) and large syringe are required and some iodine or rubbing alcohol to clean the insertion site.....

    The needle needs to be introduced into the lowest part of the belly as the fluid collects in the lowest point and the intestines tend to float above it which is why you just need a short needle.
     
    Eggcessive likes this.
  5. JonesLaneChickens

    JonesLaneChickens Chirping

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    Hmm I had a leghorn do that. She was almost 6 years old so she didn't pull through. But she went for a couple days where her comb was almost all blue and then less. I always thought is was lack of oxygen.
    Have you tried looking up blue comb? I found an article but it is more common in the summer.
    Please keep us posted on how she's doing. It's always hard when one of the girls aren't feeling great:(
     
  6. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Crossing the Road

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    Sorry about your hen. Rebrascora has provided you with a lot of good information.
     
    Last edited: Jan 20, 2019
  7. Beauty99

    Beauty99 Chirping

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    She died im so sad i cant stand it i tried to wash her i just put some water but disn’t start and then she jumped and swinged and then died what was that? That big swallowen thing in her butt?
     

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  8. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Crossing the Road

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    Her lower abdomen was so full and tight with either fluid, egg matter from lash eggs, or both. Cancer might have been there also. The thing protruding from her vent is the cloaca where the oviduct and large intestines meet, and which can prolapse. I can only guess that the pressure in her abdomen has caused the prolapse as she was dying. You can try opening her abdomen and having a look inside, taking pictures of what you find plus the organs, and we can take a look. Note if there is dark yellow fluid that comes out. So sorry for your loss.
     
  9. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Crossing the Road

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  10. MissChick@dee

    [email protected] ~ Dreaming Of Springtime ~

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    So sorry for your loss. Unfortunately with chickens by the time they show they are sick they are usually very very sick. May your heart find peace.
     

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