First case of impacted crop - advice

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by vantain, Mar 12, 2019.

  1. vantain

    vantain Chirping

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    So, one of my hens started laying soft shelled eggs a few days ago. Two days in a row, she laid a soft shell egg from the roost, onto the poop board. Then yesterday, I got a hard shelled egg from her in the nest, but it was not a very hard shell, but still a shell.

    Yesterday, I noticed she wasn't really eating, but was drinking a LOT of water all day long. She does seem to be bullied by one of the other hens, who I observed driving her away from the feeder at one point yesterday. In the evening, before they went to roost, I made her 1/2 cup of warm mash, made from their regular layena crumbles, and added a little cod liver oil to it with some scrambled egg. She at it all.

    This morning, I checked their crops before letting them out into the run, and the one in question had a full and very solid crop. Very little poop under where she was on the roost last night. Out of caution, I brought her inside, and put her in a dog crate for observation. I gave her only water, with electrolytes for now, and no food.

    She has pooped since I brought her in, and it looks fairly normal, though somewhat pasty and smells horrible. By fairly normal, I mean it's contents look about what they always do...bits of sand, broken down fibers..etc. The fibers are from them eating the pine bedding. I know everyone says they won't eat the pine shavings, but mine definitely do. I'm worried that is the cause of this particular hen's issues right now.

    In any case, she is pooping a bit, and drinking her water. She seems to be drinking quite a lot of the water actually.

    Should I feed her anything at this point? I have massaged her crop, and do so a little every hour. I do have mineral oil available, just not sure if now is the time to get some into her or not.
     
  2. The Phantom

    The Phantom I love birds!!!

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  3. casportpony

    casportpony Team Tube Feeding Captain & Poop Inspector General

    If she were mine i would tube fluids, lots of fluids. I would not give mineral oil. Can you post a picture of her poop?
     
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  4. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Crossing the Road

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    Usually when I have seen an impacted crop, there has been something else going on, such as a reproductive disorder as it sounds your hen might be having. Mineral oil is good to use, but if possible, I would try to insert a feeding tube into her crop to give her water then 5 ml of mineral oil. Some give the oil orally, but I would be afraid she might choke on it and die. Water will help to break up the impaction, along with massaging it several times a day. The mineral oil will help to move it throught the digestive tract.

    Sometimes there can be a blockage farther down in the gizzard. If there is internal laying or fluid in the belly, the pressure can cause the digestive system to slow down. A simple feeding tube is an 8 inch section of some aquarium air tubing connected to a 35 ml syringe from the feed store. It is inserted down the right back side of the throat avoiding the hole at the base of the tongue (trachea or airway.) If you cannot try the feeding tube, you can try to mix 5 ml of mineral oil in some cooked egg. Many also use chips of coconut oil hardened and offered orally instead of the mineral oil.
    upload_2019-3-12_11-57-11.jpeg
     
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2019
  5. vantain

    vantain Chirping

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    I'm pretty sure she will eat the eggs. I'll give that a go. And like I mentioned, she is already drinking quite a lot of water.
     
  6. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Crossing the Road

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    Casportpony has dealt with more impacted crops than I have. I would try to get as much water into her as possible. Give no solid foods or whole grains until you have cleared out the crop. Water with electrolytes, plain yogurt, and soft egg are good. If tubing, I give the eggs raw and whisked well with water.

    The aquarium tubing can be found at pet stores and Walmart in 8 ft lengths for $2-3. The large 35 ml syringes at most feed stores are locked up, but just ask for them.
    upload_2019-3-12_12-16-28.jpeg

     
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  7. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Crossing the Road

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  8. vantain

    vantain Chirping

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    Earlier, she had a regular poop as I mentioned. When I went to check on here now, this is what was in there. It appears to be a bit explosive, and the contents are pretty much the same as was in her more solid poops earlier this morning. It contains wood fibers (from the pine bedding she like to eat) and grit and sand, and I'm guessing her normal layer pellets from last night.

    IMG_0901 (1).jpg IMG_0902.jpg
     
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  9. vantain

    vantain Chirping

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    I gave her some scrambled eggs with 5ml of mineral oil. She gobbled that up like she was starving. She's still drinking water. Oh, and before I gave her the scrambled eggs, I felt her crop and it had gone down considerably. Almost to the point of being normal, as one would expect first thing in the morning.
     
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  10. casportpony

    casportpony Team Tube Feeding Captain & Poop Inspector General

    Fluids will help get her digestive tract moving. If after tubing fluids for 24 hours the crop doesn't clear, that's when I will give mineral oil.
     
    Eggcessive likes this.

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