Help for my silkie hen, please

Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by 19rfr57, Nov 6, 2016.

  1. 19rfr57

    19rfr57 New Egg

    Feb 4, 2015
    Hi all! My name is Robbie. I have had silkies for 2 1/2 years (first time chicken Momma). Last November, Henrietta developed a large bump below her vent. I kept her in the house and doctored her for about a month for "egg bound". I worked with her trying to get her to pass this "egg". No luck. She was stronger and eating drinking & pooing well, so I gradually reintroduced her to the flock. She did great for months. I noticed in October of this year, she seemed to be moving more slowly and was getting picked on by the others. I checked her and the bump had gotten some bigger. Then a few weeks later she would not come out of the coop. When I went to check on her, I noticed flies around her. Yep, fly strike! I immediately got her bathed and doctored up. That is doing great, but bump has gotten bigger to where she has difficulty walking and her poop is clear watery liquid with just a little bit if solid in it. She is eating everything offered, except her chicken food. She is drinking water and her eyes are alert. I was holding her wrapped in a towel last night and she had equal strength in her legs trying to climb onto my shoulder. I am attaching picture of her underside which is swollen. It starts right below the vent and goes to the palm of my hand.[​IMG]
  2. N F C

    N F C phooey! Premium Member Project Manager

    Dec 12, 2013
  3. rebrascora

    rebrascora Chicken Obsessed

    Feb 14, 2014
    Consett Co.Durham. UK
    With an abdomen as distended as that, I would say she is either internally laying or has ascites...water belly.

    If it feels like fluid it will be ascites and can be drained with a large gauge needle and she will get almost instant relief, although the chances are that she will fill up again over a period of months and draining may become an infrequent necessity.

    If it feels more solid she is probably internally laying and it is only a matter of time before she gets peritonitis and or organ failure. Antibiotics can help short term with peritonitis but the long term prognosis is not good. The fact that she is bright eyed and eating suggests that there is currently no or low level infection, so antibiotics may not help at this stage.

    A third possibility is a tumour. If this is the case, I would expect the bird to have muscle wastage as the tumour grows.

    Hopefully it will be ascites and you will be able to drain it.

    Doing nothing will almost certainly lead to organ failure as it will put pressure on heart and other vital organs or worse still, possible rupture.

    Good luck fixing her.
    3 people like this.
  4. 19rfr57

    19rfr57 New Egg

    Feb 4, 2015
    Thank you rebrascora. The bump is hard.
  5. rebrascora

    rebrascora Chicken Obsessed

    Feb 14, 2014
    Consett Co.Durham. UK
    Then I would say your options are to take her to a vet or make her as comfortable as possible and be prepared to euthanize when quality of life deteriorates.

    I have a hen that developed abdominal swelling earlier this year, in the spring. She was walking quite splay legged with it, but still eating and getting about. Hers is also hard and I really thought I would have to despatch her at one stage but she kept going and she seems to have improved and moves a lot better in the past couple of months and the swelling is not so pronounced so let's hope your girl will be equally lucky. I anticipate that it will eventually become terminal with my hen but at the moment her quality of life is pretty good.
    1 person likes this.
  6. redsoxs

    redsoxs Chicken Obsessed

    Jul 17, 2011
    North Central Kansas
    Greetings, Robbie, and :welcome! Great to have you in our community. Hope your bird gets better soon! :)
    1 person likes this.
  7. RodNTN

    RodNTN Hatchaolic Premium Member

    May 22, 2013
    Serving Jesus
    My Coop
    Hi and [​IMG] I'm glad you joined us Robbie! I'm sorry about your chicken [​IMG] Best wishes!
    1 person likes this.
  8. BantamFan4Life

    BantamFan4Life LOOK WHAT YOU MADE ME DO. Premium Member

    Jun 15, 2012
    Welcome to BYC! I'm glad you joined us! :)
  9. CuzChickens

    CuzChickens CountryChick

    Apr 24, 2016
    Hello there, and welcome to Backyard Chickens! I see you have gotten some excellent advice, so I'll just say hi! :frow
  10. drumstick diva

    drumstick diva Still crazy after all these years. Premium Member

    Aug 26, 2009
    Out to pasture

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