HELP! Hen having difficulty breathing and contorting neck.

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Beatrice&Maple, Jun 13, 2017.

  1. Beatrice&Maple

    Beatrice&Maple Out Of The Brooder

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    May 17, 2017
    About 15 minutes ago I went outside and found my year-old hen on the ground with her neck contorted struggling to get up. I brought her inside and put her in a towel-lined box. She is bending her neck back in unnatural positions and panting. She is keeping her right eye closed but is sometimes opening her other one. She did not have any problems before this and it is very sudden. She has been eating organic layer feed. I have given her water with maple syrup and apple cider vinegar in it, which seemed to help a little. She will not eat anything, but we have tried both scrambled eggs and mealworms. Please help.
     
  2. Beatrice&Maple

    Beatrice&Maple Out Of The Brooder

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    Update: She has opened her right eye and is keeping both eyes open. She ate one small piece of egg, and seems to want more but is unable to reach for it. She cannot stand up.
     
  3. horsemom1326

    horsemom1326 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Today I found a hen having trouble with her neck. It is pulling to the left, and she is breathing through her mouth (it's hot and humid in Alabama though). Has your hen improved?
     
  4. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive True BYC Addict Premium Member

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    This may be symptoms of wry neck (torticolis, crook neck.) It can be a neurological symptom of a head injury, a vitamin E, thiamine, and selenium deficiency, or a sign of an infectious disease. Give her water with poultry electrolytes and vitamins (available at feed stores,) and offer some chopped egg for selenium. Help her eat by adding water to her chicken feed, and holding her if necessary. Here is some reading:
    http://www.browneggblueegg.com/Article/Crookneck/Crookneck.html
    https://www.backyardchickens.com/threads/lets-talk-wry-neck-crook-neck.97121/
     
  5. horsemom1326

    horsemom1326 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thank you so much for the information!
     
  6. Beatrice&Maple

    Beatrice&Maple Out Of The Brooder

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    Yes, my hen has improved. She is now able to breathe comfortably through her nose and has been complaining when I accidentally spill water on her. It helps them if you can put them where they can hear and/or see (but not touch) the other chickens.
     
  7. Beatrice&Maple

    Beatrice&Maple Out Of The Brooder

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    Yesterday when I brought her outside Fern tried to stand up so I let her out of her box for a minute. She immediately started pecking at the grass and eating on her own for the first time since she got sick. Then she started walking (very haphazardly) towards the other chickens. When she got too close I moved her back towards the box, but she kept trying to get to them. When I brought her back inside I put her in a dog crate with towels in it instead of her box so that she could have some room to move around but couldn't get loose in the house. She ate and drank on her own and squawked at the cats and dog when they came too close.
     
    Junochick likes this.
  8. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive True BYC Addict Premium Member

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    She may enjoy having her crate near the other chickens inside the coop or where they hang out. Then I would continue the supervised free ranging to keep them all familiar with each other.
     
  9. Beatrice&Maple

    Beatrice&Maple Out Of The Brooder

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    Yes. They are in a pen, so I let her out of the crate outside the pen so she can see and talk to them but not touch them and potentially get them sick. I'm wondering how long I should wait (after she's fully recovered) to put her back with them, especially since I'm still not sure what she has.
     
  10. Beatrice&Maple

    Beatrice&Maple Out Of The Brooder

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    Hello, Fern is much better and is even trying to attack Birch through the fence :). I have three questions:

    1. Does anyone have any thoughts about what she might have had?
    2. When should I reintroduce her into the flock?
    3. Does anyone know if this might be a reoccurring problem?

    Thanks.
     

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