Hen caught in the rain. Pants a lot. Please help.

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Kandy, Jul 23, 2008.

  1. Kandy

    Kandy In the Brooder

    Mar 31, 2008
    My 3 year old son found his 4 month hen laying down, drenched today. We had a couple of major downpours, and I figure she just got we and stuck. She's a mottled Cochin, and I think all of those wet feathers just weighed her down. She could barely hold her head up, but once I got her blow dried most of the way, she started standing a little bit. She was really cold, so I put her on a warm heat pack in a box, and am keeping her in the house tonight. Is there anything else I need to do for her?

    Also, I've been noticing that she pants a lot. No funny noises, she just has her beak open and breathes hard. I'm worried that my son accidentally hurt her, because he carries her all over the place and sometimes falls. (It's really cute to watch.) She's still doing it, even though she's not quite warmed up all the way. At least, she does it when I look at her and wake her up. Does anyone know why, or if this is normal for some chicks? Could it indicate something wrong with her lungs or something? Thanks for any help.

  2. joebryant

    joebryant Crowing

    Quote:Kandy, I think your hen is really milking it for sympathy. Three days ago we had a really hard thunderstorm with very strong wind and downpouring rain, i.e., really bad. My ten-week-old chicks stayed out in it under a bush when all they had to do was walk ten feet to go through the door and into their coop.
    They were all drenched for a couple of hours afterwards, but they were walking around like nothing had happened.
  3. Ellie_NY_chick

    Ellie_NY_chick Songster

    Jul 1, 2008
    Finger Lakes, NY
    Hi Kandy

    I don't know where you live, but here in NY state it's been pretty hot and my birds have been panting a bit. Could it be the heat?

    My birds (including the bantam Cochins) always hang out in the rain for a little bit before they head into their house. They never seem to suffer any ill effects from this. They head indoors a little bit wet and sit around grooming theirs feathers until they're dry.

    Also, I know it's cute when toddlers play with and love on a pet, but if your son is falling on her, I'd be afraid that she was squashed. Maybe he could just sit and play with her when she's feeling better? Then when she's older he could learn to gently pick her up.

    Just a suggestion. Kids don't know when they're squeezing too hard.

    Good luck with her.
  4. beakkeeper

    beakkeeper Songster

    Jul 20, 2008
    I've never heard of it, but do chickens get pneumonia??? That's sorta what it sounds like. Keep her well watered and warm. Maybe Vitamin C? Or is that only for ppl?[​IMG]
  5. pkeeler

    pkeeler Songster

    Jul 20, 2008
    Chickens pant when they are hot. Maybe the blow drier overheated her. Or the heat pack is too hot. Make sure she has access to a range of temperatures. Not just heat.
  6. seminolewind

    seminolewind Flock Mistress

    Sep 6, 2007
    spring hill, florida
    Chickens also pant when they're stressed. Think about anything that she might be stressing about, like being handled, or new living quarters, etc.
  7. Chickens also pant when they are having difficulty breathing as in a respiratory infection. I would start her on an antibiotic as soon as possible. You can get tetracycline at Tractor Supply or your local feed store. While she's on it, give her some plain yogurt everyday. She'll love it! Electrolytes in her water and some poly-vi-sol drops three times a day for a week and then taper off. She'll be much better off right where she is...quiet in the house.

    Good luck and keep us posted... [​IMG]
  8. kinnip

    kinnip Songster

    Feb 24, 2008
    Carrollton, GA
    Mine have been panting all the time lately. It's the heat. Maybe give her the choice of moving away from the heat source and see what she does. As for the rain, last night mine ran around like idiots in the rain for three hours. I think they found it refreshing, or they really are just idiots.
  9. sammi

    sammi Songster

    Dec 21, 2007
    Southeast USA
    is she having any wheezing or rattling when she breathes?
    is she eating and drinking?
    what all do you feed?
    are there other chickens?
    describe her droppings..color and consistency..

    be careful about your son squeezing her..he could injure her in several ways.

    the Poly-vi-sol liquid baby vitamins..Enfamil brand, no iron..2-3 drops ON her beak so it drips into her mouth..ONCE a day for a week or so, then taper off.
    also, there are chick vitamins you can get at feed/farm stores.
  10. Kandy

    Kandy In the Brooder

    Mar 31, 2008
    Thanks for all of the replys. She wasn't milking it for sympathy, she died that night.
    It wasn't just a little rain shower she was in. It was sheets of rain, unlike we usually get in Idaho. Not something chickens would choose to be in.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by: