Help please - poorly, lethargic chicken. Is it worms?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by RareAsHensTeeth, Mar 30, 2016.

  1. RareAsHensTeeth

    RareAsHensTeeth New Egg

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    Mar 30, 2016
    Hi,
    One of my chickens (about three and a half, ex battery hens) is really out of sorts. She's seemed a bit under the weather for the past couple of days, and both chickens haven't laid these past few days either. The one I'm worried about is spending most of her time standing hunched over in the coop, legs slightly splayed. She's eating and drinking, but barely moving and has gone really quiet. Today she absolutely refused to come out the coop, and yesterday she dashed back into the coop almost as soon as she came out of it, whereas normally they are both desperate to go outside as soon as they catch sight of us. Both chickens have had diarrhoea for the past few days and tail feathers are looking worse for wear because of this. Could worms be causing this?
     
  2. Wyorp Rock

    Wyorp Rock Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

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    Welcome to BYC! [​IMG]
    Can you post a photo?
    She could be egg bound, have an internal laying problem, etc.
    Can you check to see if you feel an egg in the vent. Use a glove, lubricate finger and feel in the vent about an inch and see if you feel and egg.
    Also how long have you had them?
    What type of feed are you using and do they have access to oyster shell?


    http://www.fresheggsdaily.com/2012/06/egg-bound-hens-how-to-recognize-treat.html
    http://www.the-chicken-chick.com/2012/07/chicken-egg-binding-causes-symptoms.html
    http://www.hobbyfarms.com/livestock-and-pets/6-causes-of-chicken-swollen-abdomen.aspx
     
  3. RareAsHensTeeth

    RareAsHensTeeth New Egg

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    Mar 30, 2016
    Thanks for the response! She doesn't particularly like getting close to people (and I spent half the morning trying to get her out the coop for this), so no photos I'm afraid and she wouldn't tolerate a check for an egg, but looking at the links you posted her symptoms do match up fairly well (apart from her comb, which is fine). Managed to get her to have a bit of a walk round the garden and she pecked at a few plants and is drinking alright. We brought her in for a warm bath and popped her on top of a heated towel for a while, and she seemed quite relaxed about it all but did appear to be straining to lay an egg. She's back in the coop now and had plenty to eat and drink as soon as she got back in the coop but is staying quite still again now.
    We've had the chickens nearly two years now, and they're on layers pellets with constant access to oyster shell and ground-up egg shell.
     
  4. Wyorp Rock

    Wyorp Rock Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

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    It sounds like you are taking good care of her.
    Hopefully the soak helped her to relax so she can lay her egg.
     
  5. huntingirl

    huntingirl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Try to get her some antibiotics. Also separate her from the rest of the flock. Watch her poop. Make her comfortable and talk to her. Comfort her. You can gently tie a small peice of fabric over her eyes to calm her down so you can feel for and egg with a glove. Best of luck!!!
     
    Last edited: Mar 30, 2016
  6. ycram69

    ycram69 New Egg

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    Mar 24, 2014
    What type of antibiotics would you ise for egg bound or broken egg hens?
     
  7. Wyorp Rock

    Wyorp Rock Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

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    Quote:
    A hen that is truly egg bound will die within 48hours if she is unable to pass the egg.

    Antibiotics would give some relief/and or supportive care to a hen that has Ascites, Peritonitis, Salpingitis, etc. Medication will not necessarily "cure" the problem, but will in some cases extend the life of the hen and help ward off some infections due to egg laying issues.

    http://www.fresheggsdaily.com/2012/06/egg-bound-hens-how-to-recognize-treat.html
    http://www.the-chicken-chick.com/2012/07/chicken-egg-binding-causes-symptoms.html
    http://luckyhensrescuenorthwest.weebly.com/egg-bound-henegg-peritonitis-help-sheet.html
    http://www.chickenvet.co.uk/health-and-common-diseases/egg-laying-issues/index.aspx
    http://scoopfromthecoop.nutrenaworld.com/tag/laying-issues/
    http://www.hobbyfarms.com/livestock-and-pets/6-causes-of-chicken-swollen-abdomen.aspx
     
  8. RareAsHensTeeth

    RareAsHensTeeth New Egg

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    Thank you very much for the advice. She hasn't laid an egg but appears to have much better since her bath - she's moving a bit more and showing an interest in her surroundings again now so while she still hunches up and closes her eyes quite a lot I think she's getting over whatever is wrong with her. Her main issue now is that my other hen keeps pecking at her head - I guess that's punishment for being poor company for a few days!
     
  9. Wyorp Rock

    Wyorp Rock Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

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    How long have you had them?
    Are they actually "new" to your property?

    The only other thing I can think of besides the egg laying problems (Ascites, Peritonitis) would be if she is fairly new to the property and she is ex battery she could have Cocci.
     
  10. RareAsHensTeeth

    RareAsHensTeeth New Egg

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    She's been here for almost two years! It's really strange...
    Whatever it is, she seems far happier now than earlier in the week when she was hardly moving!
     

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