Found Chicken very lethargic this morning

CityChickenns

In the Brooder
5 Years
Jan 24, 2014
13
0
22
It's approaching winter here in Australia and my 3 year old ISA Brown is about 4 weeks into her moult. This morning as I went to let my 2 remaining girls out, Betty was still in the house, my other hen clucking for her to come out. As I went into check, she was just laying on the ground very lethargic. She has been completely fine up until today. I brought her inside and warmed her up, she sat in the sun for a while which perked her up a bit it also gave her a bit of her appetite back. She tries to stand but is very wobbly and has to lay down again. She's been sleeping on and off all day. Any ideas what it could be? I'm hoping nothing too serious as she still has an appetite.

Any help would be greatly appreciated, thank you
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Teila

Bambrook Bantams
6 Years
Apr 15, 2013
16,612
26,049
1,026
Forrest Beach, FNQ, Australia
Howdy CityChickenns

I do not know how much help I am going to be, if any, but I will give it a shot.

As you can see on my profile, I am in Australia also and yep, we have had some chilly days. Not knowing where in Aus; I will throw out some thoughts.

Her symptoms could be indicative of quite a few things.

You mention that she is 4 weeks into her moult; was it a hard moult? Has she started feathering up again? Does she have bare patches and pin feathers?

When they are moulting they are very sensitive to touch and if it was windy today, as it was here, she may just be keeping herself sheltered as the wind may hurt her or just sheltered for extra warmth.

With the coldish snap we have had, if she has bare patches, she may just be feeling it a bit.

Wobbly on her legs is not a good sign and I am unsure if that can be related to being cold.

Are her poops OK, no diarrhoea etc?
Does she appear to be straining at all or in any sort of discomfort?
No discharges from eyes, nasal area etc? No sneezing?

How about parasites? Has she been wormed lately? No signs of lice or mite?

How is her crop? Does it appear to be enlarged at all? Does it feel squishy/hard/pendulous?

Any chance she may have been bitten by something, eg: redback, snake etc?

Has she been in any areas of the garden that she does not usually go into? Could she have eaten something she shouldn’t?

Besides sleepy and wobbly, is there anything else that appears to be out of the ordinary for her? Even the slightest thing may be a help in diagnosis?

Sorry about all the questions! Just trying to find something that might help work out what ails her.
 
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CityChickenns

In the Brooder
5 Years
Jan 24, 2014
13
0
22
@Teila

Not really a hard moult she had some patches but has feathered up again. She has no diarrhoea but her poo was a little watery, still solid though.
She seems a bit uncomfortable laying as she tries to get comfortable. She opens her beak a little bit to breathe. There is no discharge from her eyes or nose and she hasn't been sneezing.
She is due to be wormed again and has no sign of lice or mites. Her crop isn't enlarged it feels squishy.

In regards to a bite I'm not entirely sure I checked the coop and couldn't find anything although she has a blue spot on her wattle?

Nothing out of the ordinary, just that spot. Clean vent, eyes, nose etc. She's just very lethargic and sleepy.
 

Teila

Bambrook Bantams
6 Years
Apr 15, 2013
16,612
26,049
1,026
Forrest Beach, FNQ, Australia
If she is opening her beak to breathe and she is not hot, she may be having difficulty breathing and the blue spot on her comb could be an indication of lack of oxygen.

Do her comb or wattles look slightly swollen than is the norm for her?

No swelling around the eyes?
 

CityChickenns

In the Brooder
5 Years
Jan 24, 2014
13
0
22
So just keep her comfortable?

Her wattle and comb look normal as well as her eyes, when I check sometimes her face looks paler then when I check again it's back to a pinky colour?
 

Teila

Bambrook Bantams
6 Years
Apr 15, 2013
16,612
26,049
1,026
Forrest Beach, FNQ, Australia
Sorry, as I said I am not sure how much help I am going to be and I do not want to freak you out, but you may be dealing with some sort of respiratory issue.

Sadly, there are not many of our US members logged on at this time but I am going to post a link to this thread in the Aussie Room and put out a call for some assistance.

Yep, for now, I would keep her isolated and warm and ensure she has some water and I will see if I can find us someone with more experience.
 
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sjturner79

Songster
Mar 5, 2015
1,712
276
196
South Australia
The symptoms you have are usually a breathing problem. Have you checked her neck feathers carefully to see if there is something tangled in there. We lost a chook to that a few months back and found a strand of twine had been caught around her neck. If we had ruffled through her neck feathers to check we could have saved it.
 

Teila

Bambrook Bantams
6 Years
Apr 15, 2013
16,612
26,049
1,026
Forrest Beach, FNQ, Australia
So nothing outside restricting her breathing, maybe something inside?

Unfortunately, I do not know how a chickens neck should feel if felt from the outside but may be worth seeing if you can feel anything that does not feel right? Maybe a piece of food or something similar stuck; however, if she had something lodged, I would imagine she would be trying to shift it.

Another possibility could be gape worm but again, anything I have read about gape worm indicates that they stretch their neck, open their beak wide etc, showing obvious symptoms of discomfort in the throat.
 

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