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Ex-cage hen with slow (?) crop

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by ThreeAmigosRanch, Jul 18, 2019.

  1. ThreeAmigosRanch

    ThreeAmigosRanch Hatching

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    Jul 18, 2019
    Hi,

    We have recently rescued hens from the cage system, each probably 1.5 years old. They have had normal minor issues settling pecking order, but are generally doing well. However, one has recently developed a crop issue. I have read through many excellent articles on sour/slow/impacted/pendulous crop but can’t quite align with this specific case. We already love this little hen and are desperate to help her.

    The issue started 6 days ago when she ate loads of food (layers pellets). She did really well at the feeders that day, despite being bottom of the pecking order. The problem was it didn’t all clear the next day. We monitored her and she kept pooping and eating but as she filled her crop more, she started doing those violent neck spasms to push her crop. Things didn’t settle after a couple of days, but there was no bad smell and she is super active and acrobatic (appears in great health aside from the large crop). We suspected slow crop rather than sour. The hen was isolated with just water for an afternoon and night, then given some mushy food intermittently the next day. She managed to fully empty her crop (good news initially).

    We kept her isolated a few more hours but wanted to get her back in with the flock so she was re-introduced. The next evening she had managed to fill her crop again and it didn’t empty fully overnight. It does go down but not fully.

    As she is a rescue chicken, could she just be eating too much, desperate for any food she can grab which she could never do before? She has access to food throughout the day so should we just limit it to a sensible amount morning and night?

    Their main run is on sharp sand (supposed to be good due to the mixed particle size I’m told, it's stonier, not like play sand). We’re trying to give them more access to the grassy area next to them but are worried about grass causing further crop issues.

    Alternatively, if this really means there’s a different underlying issue, what can we try? We can help her pass everything from her crop again by isolating with water only for a while, which we know works. The question is how we keep her settled.

    Thank you in advance for any help and advice. Sorry this is similar to previous questions, but I’m wondering (maybe hoping) the ex-cage and over-eating theory could explain it. If not, could a minor impaction have passed through beyond the crop and still be working through slowly? Poop coming out is ok, sometimes small, sometimes splatty if she's drunk a lot.

    Thanks in advance!
     
    Brahma Chicken5000 likes this.
  2. ThreeAmigosRanch

    ThreeAmigosRanch Hatching

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    Jul 18, 2019
    Small update: her crop this afternoon was more like a balloon, which seemed much more likely to be on the way to sour crop. Trying isolating her now with just water ready to apply some sour crop treatment (probably oral gel/cream).

    Anyone think this is a good approach? For an ex-cage hen, are there good ways of preventing this in future? She won't have access to long grass, she gets regular cider vinegar in water and other spice supplements on pellets. Advice welcome, thanks!
     
    Brahma Chicken5000 likes this.
  3. ThreeAmigosRanch

    ThreeAmigosRanch Hatching

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    Jul 18, 2019
    Started a course of nystatin and hoping that will do it. She is doing ok after crop emptied but of she eats and drinks a bit she still dribbles a little smelly liquid out. Not sure how long the nystatin takes to have an effect.

    Anybody here used it? Success?
     
  4. Kdlevesque

    Kdlevesque Songster

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    We are using miconazol which is pretty much the same, right? Today is the first day and I’m also wondering how long it takes.
     

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