Hen has symptoms of egg-binding, but can't feel egg

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by estherstar, Mar 22, 2015.

  1. estherstar

    estherstar New Egg

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    Jun 5, 2008
    Hi. My two-year old cochin is in trouble. I think she's been broody for a few weeks, but I kept moving her from the box, but possibly not as frequently as I should have. Her sister did the same thing recently, but is fine. We did have a scare with a raccoon about two weeks ago, so stress could be another factor.

    She now seems very weak: walks with stiff legs and then sits in the yard. She still attempts to eat, though not very much, and she will put herself in with the other chickens in the evening. She can run when needed. She is alert, comb up. Poop minimal but looks pretty normal. She has lost a lot of weight. Her cloaca is pulsing, as if she's trying to lay, though I didn't notice that prior to the exams. She hangs her tail, and does a lot of feather rustling/stretching. How far up can the eggs get stuck in the formation process? I have not given her any Tums, since I didn't feel anything on the exam, last night and this morning.

    I did syringe feed her last night and this morning with yogurt, and made up a diet for rickets that I saw on another thread, but she doesn't seem interested.

    Any thoughts? I would take her to a vet, but finances do not allow.

    Thanks for any advice.

    (The other four hens [cochin, americauna, wellsummer] are all acting normally.)
     
  2. darkbrahmamama

    darkbrahmamama Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 22, 2013
    If she did go broody, a hen can kill themselves if not broken from being broody or allowed to hatch eggs. Is her chest bald? Does she "growl" when you go to move her? If she's broody, & you don't give her any chicks to raise, buy a small metal wire dog crate (big enough for her), take out the plastic bottom tray, zip tie small squared hardware cloth to the bottom, set it up on something (like 4 buckets) so there is air flow under it, & leave her in there for a few weeks to until she is no longer broody. If the broody signs aren't there, & she is egg bound, make a warm water bath & set her in it for a few minutes. You can also put on a rubber glove, & with lube, see if you can feel an egg in her. Leaving lube around the inside of her can/will be helpful. Calcium gluconate is very helpful for egg bound hens.

    https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/819024/egg-bound-calcium-dosage
     
  3. estherstar

    estherstar New Egg

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    Jun 5, 2008
    Thank you. I did do an internal cloacal exam and could not feel anything as far in as my finger.

    Her chest is not bald. She does not growl at this point, but did when I would move her from box previously. She doesn't sit in box any longer, just out in yard.

    If she is bound, would I definitely feel egg, or could it be beyond where a can feel? She has lost weight, which makes me think it's more of an unchecked broody issue.
     
    Last edited: Mar 22, 2015
  4. darkbrahmamama

    darkbrahmamama Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 22, 2013
    Does her abdomen feel hard? Is she walking like a penguin? You may not be able to feel it. A little dose of calcium & a warm water bath wouldn't hurt just in case. I give some to my one hen that was egg bound with a prolapsed vent last year whenever she acts a little off. But usually they stop laying when they go broody & it takes a while for them to start back up, at least with mine. My girls pulled out all their lower chest & abdomen feathers, lost weight, growled whenever touched ..... I broke one in 2-3 weeks, another I couldn't & hatched out eggs for her since she wouldn't sit on them where I wanted her to. Depending on how long yours went, vitamins & electrolytes & high protein might help her.
     

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