Fayoumi - egg bound? UPDATE dead :( some questions...

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by warmfuzzyfeelings, Oct 11, 2011.

  1. warmfuzzyfeelings

    warmfuzzyfeelings New Egg

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    Jul 23, 2011
    I have three Egyptian Fayoumis. I've never had chickens before and have only had these since July. They are about 6 months old.

    We were told they'd be laying in September but we haven't seen a single egg yet. (I've just read that giving them scraps as well as pellets can upset the balance of their nutrition so we'll stop doing that).

    Anyway, next door just got a cockerel which I thought might move things along a bit, and one of our hens has been acting funny all day. She looks like she wants to lay an egg - squatting and looking like she's straining, walking funny, standing in the nesting box or in the coop and hardly moving. She droops her head and her comb has flopped over a bit. She seems very lethargic but will still run away if we go in the enclosure. I noticed some blood in the nesting box. Do you think she might be egg bound? Or is this normal for a chicken when she first starts laying? A friend said his chicken took 4 or 5 hours to lay its first egg. I was worried that if she didn't lay it by nightfall another one might come up behind it and get stuck.

    When I checked them just as it started to get dark she had come out of the nesting box and was roosting with the others. I will check when I go to open the coop in the morning. I hope to find an egg and not a dead chicken [​IMG]

    Someone advised me to use a glove and some vaseline and have a poke about but I'm not happy about doing it especially as I read it can break the egg and kill the bird. I have also read about giving them warm baths and massage, but there are two problems. One, I have a baby and have little time for anything other than caring for him, and two - they're a bugger to catch. My hubby has a day off work tomorrow so maybe we can do something but he's unsentimental and may not be as upset as me if anything happens to this chicken!

    Any advice gratefully received!
     
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2011
  2. papinator

    papinator Out Of The Brooder

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    If you have a hard time catching them, it's easier if you wait until night time when they're "sleeping". Mine don't move during the night, even if we approach them... they'll make some noise, but stay put. This is part of why they are such easy prey for night predators.
     
  3. cukooformarans

    cukooformarans Chillin' With My Peeps

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    How was she this morning?
     
  4. warmfuzzyfeelings

    warmfuzzyfeelings New Egg

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    She seemed ok! Haven't found any eggs anywhere and she still looks like she is "with egg". She came out with the others this morning and spent the day pretty much like yesterday, sometimes moving around outside (albeit gingerly) and sometimes going inside and looking like she wanted to lay. She is still walking funny and she looks lethargic and droopy combed. But I chased her this evening and she ran away which I hope was a good sign. I figured if I could catch her I could examine her, and if I couldn't then there can't be too much wrong with her. Also I hoped that the action of centrifugal force might somehow work the egg out of her [​IMG]

    She was roosting with the others when I went to lock them in tonight.
     
  5. Tracydr

    Tracydr Chillin' With My Peeps

    It would be extremely, extremely unusual for a Fayoumi pullet to get egg bound. This is a problem usually seen in commercial production breeds. Let's just say I've never seen an egg bound hen, period in 25 years of having chickens so your chances of having an egg bound, non-typical, super hardy breed would be miniscule.
    I think she's probably just having her signs of laying her first egg. Give her space, quiet time and a quiet hidy hole to lay in. If she doesn't like her nest box, or it's not private enough for her to get comfy, maybe make a box with more privacy or a curtain.
    Don't get in too much of a hurry. Unless she seems sick, she's probably fine. You'll probably see an egg in the next day or two. Fayoumi's are half wild so don't be surprised if she doesn't hide it really well. Good luck! [​IMG]
     
  6. warmfuzzyfeelings

    warmfuzzyfeelings New Egg

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    Ah thank you! I feel reassured. It's good to hear advice from someone with experience of fayoumis, they're such a quirky breed.

    I think I will try putting a curtain in the nest box. They have tended to sleep in the nest boxes as they are higher than the perch so I wondered if they would want to lay eggs in them at all, but Mrs Doyle did spend a lot of time in there looking like she wanted to lay yesterday - she looked a bit awkward though so maybe a curtain would make her feel more comfortable.

    Is it normal for them to look lethargic and droopy when they're getting ready to lay? She stands with her eyes closing quite a lot and as I say, her comb is droopy too.

    Also, how are fayoumis over winter? I've read that they're good in warm climates but we're in the north of England which is goes well below freezing in winter. Any tips?
     
  7. warmfuzzyfeelings

    warmfuzzyfeelings New Egg

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    Well we're on day three of it now - she's still the same, looking lethargic and sort of hunkering down with her wings low and her neck hunched. She still moves away when approached. She goes and looks at the food but doesn't really seem to be eating, and scratches around a bit occasionally. Mostly just stands looking sorry for herself. She looks sort of "fat" if you know what I mean?She does white runny poos.

    I think I forgot to mention the other day I found a bit of blood in the nesting box. I was told this isn't uncommon - but there are no eggs and she still looks uncomfortable [​IMG]
     
  8. Tracydr

    Tracydr Chillin' With My Peeps

    Quote:I would probably check her and see if you can feel an egg. Try to catch her tonight. Use KY jelly, not oil, as oil can go rancid on the feathers and is not as good of a lubricant. If it is an egg problem, I would give her antibiotics, because she's likely to have an infection.
    There is an excellent article on health in a recent Poultry News, although I don't have the link. It was an interview with a chicken vet and she discussed dealing with egg bound hens, among other health issues.
    Is she getting plenty of oyster shell? Lack of calcium can cause difficulty laying.
    Also, check closely for signs of mites when you catch her. This could be causing the droopy comb and lethargy if it's not an egg issue.
     
  9. warmfuzzyfeelings

    warmfuzzyfeelings New Egg

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    I asked a friend who is experienced with chickens to come round to help but unfortunately it was too late, Mrs Doyle had died.

    There was no way of telling what had been wrong. My friend speculated that maybe she was just a dud - her comb never really developed properly, it was always pink and small compared to the other two. When next door got their cockerel I thought her comb became redder, so maybe it did have an effect on her but her body just couldn't cope? I'm sure it was something to do with that, as she had always been fine until he arrived on the scene. The other two are still fine thank goodness.

    Sad times [​IMG]
     
  10. Tracydr

    Tracydr Chillin' With My Peeps

    I'm so sorry you lost your Egyptian. They are such strange chickens with very unusual genetics from being segregated from all other chickens for so long in Egypt. They are the strangest chicken breed I've ever owned as far as temperament, looks and now I've been learning how unusual some of their genetics are. They can even have epilepsy!
    Anyway, I'm really sorry for your loss. I have three hens, lost my rooster this summer for some unknown reason. Looked fine and one hour later he was dead.
    They are a bit difficult to raise in my small backyard but when I move into the country I will definitely get more. They sure have some big wings for flying! Those and my Hamburgs, wings like pheasants!
     

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