Frothy Chicken Butt


10 Years
Jun 17, 2009
Hello Everyone,

I'm new to owning chickens and when I got these first 3 hens one of them had kind of a wet frothy butt, and I didn't really think much about it, but it's been that way now for maybe a month or more.


I'm guessing it has diarrhea, but I don't know. I'm attaching a picture so if anyone could help me figure out what's going on and how to fix it, I'd appreciate it. I guessed that it was maybe worms causing diarrhea and so I started putting some diatomecious earth in their food starting yesterday. I'd like to avoid chemical solutions.

De wont cure a bad case of worms, now I am not going to get into a big argument, do some research , check the STUDIES not what everyone says. Find out what type and under what circumstances that DE had successfully controlled bugs on plants. You will find that humidity directly effected the efficacy of DE as an insect control agent.

Now , you are giving then food DE , highly milled and in a super moist environment.

As far as what is wrong with your bird, I do not know. Birds will excrete water when they are overheated or very stressed, its part of their cooling system. However I have never seen one quite that bad.

I would be concerned enough to see if there is a vet that would do a float test for you at a reasonable price.

PS I do believe DE can help as a preventive agent for all sorts of insect and parasite's in the coop because it helps maintain a dry environment , most parasites like moist environments. I also believe it helps contain the spread of soft bodies parasites found in excrement because again, it dries the poop out and sucks the moisture right out of the little buggers. HOWEVER , I have never been able to find any scientific studies to indicate that my assumptions are valid. I came to these conclusions based on the studies that proved the non-milled DE can control insects in stored and pre-harvested wheat.
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3 tbsp of cayenne pepper to a gallon of feed
you have to feed it continuiously and not feed any other feed

here is what to do for the frothy substance
it is caused by a E.coli from the worms in the gut

the next mentioned info on E.coli is from "threehorses" Nathalie Ross
(3 gut bacteria
At 7 weeks, the babies are still in the
process of getting their gut bacteria in order. See, they're born
without any bacteria at all in their gut. So they eat at day 2, and put
food in there as a food source for themselves but also for bacteria.
Basically, it's first-come-first-serve for bacteria. If the bad ones get
there first, they take over and your birds get ill. IF there are some
good but mostly bad, the same thing happens. If you give your birds
probiotics (substances containing live beneficial bacteria) your GOOD
bacteria will have the advantage. Those good bacteria crowd out the bad,
make it impossible for the bad bacteria to live in anything but minimal
numbers, and thus help your birds to stay healthy. So I always
recommend giving probiotics weekly from week 2 til point of lay. Then I move
to once a month or as needed. You can use live-culture yogurt

(1 teaspoon per 8 newly hatched, moving up to 1 teaspoon per point of lay
bantam, 1 tablespoon per point of lay large fowl - no more please). You can
also use powdered livestock probiotics (Probios dispersable powder
being my absolute favorite - it's the choice of exotic bird breeders, and I
also have hookbills).

Or, you can go to the human health food store
and pick up a human supplement like "acidophilus" (Lactobacilus
acidophilus), or a combination of acidophilus and B. bifidum sold to combat
yeast infections. The latter is a particular useful thing for a poultry
hobbiest to have. The addition of b. bifidum helps combat thrush.
Thrush is essentially a yeast infection that is common to birds because of
the way their crops store feed in wet conditions. Things tend to get
fungus and yeast there, and thus the yeast infection. That infection
goes throughout the bird's system and is really a mess, so that
bifidum/acidophilus mix is the best. Try to find a non-dairy liquid, and you'll
have the ultimate probiotic.

So, there are some options. I'd tend towards those.
Also, if you're
prescribed antibiotics for your birds' infection, you'll want to give
PRObiotics daily during treatment. Antibiotics are unfortunately going
to kill the good bacteria which are having such a difficult time getting
established in y our babies as it is. The antibiotics will possibly do
as much harm as good, so combat that bad effect with probiotics. Try
giving them daily for about 3 days after the last batch of medicine.

(4 E.Coli
In case your babies are said to have an infection of E. coli (most
likely case) then you can try putting some vitamin E in their feed.

( GLH- advises using the 1000 mg capsules ( one per each chicken feed this recipe)
cut end off and squeeze into wet mash
and putting in a wet mash for them to eat
( use one capsule Vit E per bird treating and do this twice a day for a week in the wet mash mixture

Vitamin E helps fix E. coli overpopulations. You know what else helps fight
E. coli? Guess:

b. bifidum. It secrets a substance that E. coli just
can't stand. See where this is going?

Nathalie Ross, Houston, TX

email me with any questions
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I'd like to support the post of the other posters.

First, frothy droppings are most often a sign of worms, particularly if they're green and the birds are adults.

DE, used correctly, is one of a number of good natural ways to ward off great loads of intestinal parasites.

HOWEVER - once there is a worm issue, you simply must deworm with a standard worming product to save the live of the bird and your flock. The description that you've given of this bird strongly tells me that the bird has a heavy parasite load. If one does, then it's possible that more do.

Heavy parasite loads must be handled carefully. Too many worms dying off at once can actually cause a bird to go into anaphylactic shock. Think of what you've heard about organ donors going into shock when the body 'rejects' the donated organ. It does so because it doesn't recognize what it considered a foreign protein. The same thing happens with worms. When the worms are alive, it's no problem (other than the obvious problems worms cause). But when the worm dies, it becomes a foreign protein. A lot of worms causes the body to think that there's a mass of foreign protein and it goes into shock. Add to that a heavy load of dead worms trying to leave the intestine and often there's blockage.

So, to avoid that, the standard and recommended protocol is to start with a worming with Wazine 17 (piperazine 17%). Do NOT buy the piperazine for dogs/cats. Only the livestock piperazine with labeling for poultry to avoid confusion and frustration.

Piperazine pretty much only kills roundworms, and then not all of them (it must be repeated). But this is GOOD for your situation! You don't want to kill them all - you want to kill enough to help start solving the problem without killing the bird. Give one day, withdraw eating eggs and meat for 2 weeks. After 2 weeks, then go back and worm all of the birds with ivermectin. I prefer the drop-on, used between the shoulders. I buy generic to cut paying for labels. It only takes a drop to three depending on the bird and the safety margin is huge. You can eat the eggs during using ivermectin.

Worm them now, and THEN let your DE, cayenne, etc do the work of keeping things from getting too bad between your twice a year wormings. I like spring before summer, and fall so that birds' weights don't drop off during the winter.

I am a big proponent of using as few chemicals as possible. I used DE for years in my flock and am about to do so again now that my flock is gaining in size again (after a raccoon and dog depopulation of them). I'm the type of person who likes natural source vitamins, living nutrition, and organic things. But I do know from my over thirty years of experience with exotic birds and poultry that there are some times when a chemical is necessary. And this is one of them.

By the way, at any time that any bird experiences stress or illness or medication, always boost their essential parasite colonies of their gut by using a probiotic. You can use plain yogurt (as long as you're not medicating with a mycin or cycline drug), acidophilus tablets/capsules (commonly found at grocers and pharmacies now days), or a prepared livestock probiotic (live bacteria pls, must say CFU somewhere on the label) like probios (powder or paste), fastrack, etc.

Use daily during medication - even antibiotics - to hedge your bets. Then for every day you medicate, use at least every other day for twice that many days.

Example: 7 days of medication give probiotics daily, 14 days after medication give probiotics every other day at least.

In this case, I'd worm the one day and then give probiotics every other day for the 2 weeks until you give the ivermectin. Then every other day for a week after the ivermectin.

I hope this helps. please feel free to PM me with any questions about anything I've posted. Thanks!
P.s.: An afterthought.

Because of the prevalence of maggots in the summer, wash off her vent, dry it, and watch it to make sure that droppings don't continue there. Flies will go there and lay eggs which hatch into maggots.

You do NOT want to have to deal with that, so prevention is very important.

It only takes one fly to lay over 300 eggs which hatch withing 12 hours in summer heat. If you think frothy tushy is nasty... Yeah you don't want to go there. /wink

By the way, once we get this settled, let's talk about their feed, and everything else, and get you on a good program that suits your philosophy of chicken keeping and keep these girls healthy. They're beautiful birds, she's lovely, and we sure want you to have a healthy and thriving flock!
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your thoughts were exactly right
thanks for helping out here
any questions email me
Yeah, you know how I am about using medicines or chemicals, Glenda.
I really avoid them if at all possible. If at all I thought there was a way, within my conscious, that they could treat this without chemicals I'd recommend it. But I can't.

Every flock is as important as my flock, or I think of them that way. It's what I'd do with my own birds.

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