Help! Very sick chicken is dying

MyChicagoCoop

In the Brooder
Apr 9, 2018
13
21
39
Chicago
My chicken is dying and I don’t know what to do. We found her on the bottom of the coop, laying on her side. She barely seemed to be alive. I checked her over and she doesn’t have any visible injuries, but does have diarrhea and I removed a Bumblefoot corn. But she seems thin and won’t even open her eyes. I cleaned her bottom and I forced some water with electrolytes. Shes inside the house in a rabbit cage, laying on her side. I don’t know what to do! I’ve never had a sick chicken before. She was totally fine just a few days ago when I last tended to her (my husbands in charge on my work days, and vice versa). My husband told me today that she wasn’t acting herself yesterday but he thought it was because of the cold, and didn’t mention anything to me. Is there anything I can do? Any ideas what could be wrong? Help
 

micstrachan

Enabler
Premium Feather Member
5 Years
Apr 10, 2016
10,311
49,101
1,087
Santa Cruz Mountains, California
Ok, how did you force the water? Take care with this, as you can aspirate her (by getting fluid into her lungs). You will need to gently examine her. Is she a laying hen? If so, first look at her vent, then gently check for a stuck egg by inserting a gloved, lubed finger into her vent about an inch or so. Check her crop. How does it feel? If she isn’t eating much, it should be nearly empty. Feel her abdomen (fluffy butt). Is it swollen? Feel her breast muscle. Is it wasting away with a sharp keel bone sticking out? Please start there and report back.
 

ChickenLeg

Crowing
9 Years
Feb 15, 2012
1,399
1,590
297
Pictures of her poop? Has she lost a lot of weight? How was she standing last, was she hunched over today? lethargic? puffed up with closed eye?
 

azygous

Enabler
11 Years
Dec 11, 2009
23,283
33,308
1,122
Colorado Rockies
I'm so sorry your hen is so sick. You did right by giving her water and electrolytes. Next do what @micstrachan suggested and get her warm. Throw a couple towels in the dryer and warm them up and wrap her in one, then the other when the first cools down. If you have a heating pad, turn it to the low setting and lay her on it wrapped in the warm towel.

It's impossible to diagnose her without more information. And even then, it's only going to be guesses since we aren't there.

Any information you can give us about age, where she's been hanging out the past couple days, what she's had to eat, including anything she might have scratched up in the yard or a compost pile. Have you noticed if her appetite has been off? Can you feel her crop? Is it empty and flat or full? Squishy or hard and lumpy?
 

MyChicagoCoop

In the Brooder
Apr 9, 2018
13
21
39
Chicago
Ok, how did you force the water? Take care with this, as you can aspirate her (by getting fluid into her lungs). You will need to gently examine her. Is she a laying hen? If so, first look at her vent, then gently check for a stuck egg by inserting a gloved, lubed finger into her vent about an inch or so. Check her crop. How does it feel? If she isn’t eating much, it should be nearly empty. Feel her abdomen (fluffy butt). Is it swollen? Feel her breast muscle. Is it wasting away with a sharp keel bone sticking out? Please start there and report back.

I’m going to have my husband help me with checking for an egg. Her crop felt full. No swollen abdomen. And she feels thin
 

Mosey2003

Crowing
5 Years
Apr 13, 2016
3,037
4,913
391
North-Central IL
Have you checked her crop first thing in the morning? Because it should be empty every morning. If she hasn't eaten since you've brought her in and it's still full now, you may have a crop impaction.
 

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