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Hen repeatedly straining with bulge behind vent, but it's not an egg?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Cowgirl71, Jan 5, 2011.

  1. Cowgirl71

    Cowgirl71 Songster

    Feb 5, 2010
    Missouri Ozarks
    I have a 21 month old GLW hen who has recently finished molting but is not yet laying again. Yesterday morning she was acting a little strange, and her comb was noticeably paler than usual. Then last night, I noticed her all hunched up, and straining every couple minutes. I looked her over, and it seemed like she was egg bound (I have no experience with egg bound hens though). She had a big bulge behind her vent, and lot's of diarrhea oozing out. So I grabbed a pair of latex gloves and some lubricant we use for calving heifers and tried to find and remove the egg. But I felt around and could not find an egg. Just a lot of manure... [​IMG] Then this morning she was acting a little better and I hoped I had done something and she was going to recover. But then half an hour ago I went to collect eggs and she was much worse. There's now blood oozing out along with the diarrhea, and she's still straining and sometimes crying out in pain. [​IMG] She still has a big bulge behind her vent, but I tried feeling it and it's firm but at the same time squishy, and doesn't feel like an egg. I'm thinking there's probably no hope for her and I should put her out of her misery, but I wanted to double check with some experienced people first...
  2. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia Loving this country life Premium Member 8 Years

    I am sorry cowgirl71 I wish I could help you out, There was someone else thats hen had the same thing going on just this week, the bulge but no blood. You might try soaking her in some warm epsom salt water as a last resort. I wish I could offer more. [​IMG]
  3. RhodeIslandRedFan

    RhodeIslandRedFan Songster

    Dec 10, 2009
    Central PA
    This sounds like it may be a prolapse. Try searching "prolapse" on this site. You will find a lot of information and pictures you can use to see what a prolapse looks like, and compare it to what you are seeing on your hen. You will also find information on how to treat this. Also, if you post pictures others will be able to better offer you assistance. I don't have experience with this but others on here have, and can help you through this once we know for sure what is happening. Good luck with your hen!
  4. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia Loving this country life Premium Member 8 Years

    When you say bulge I was thinking under her skin. Is this something that is outside of her body? Out of her vent?
  5. Cowgirl71

    Cowgirl71 Songster

    Feb 5, 2010
    Missouri Ozarks
    Thanks for the advice! I wish I could get a picture, but the sun has set and it's dark now.

    She's not prolapsing, it's a large golf-ball-size bulge behind her vent, with no tissue protruding.
  6. welasharon

    welasharon Songster

    Jun 28, 2010
    North Florida
    Before I put her down I would try the warm epsom salts bath for a half hour or so. Also, you may want to look up vent gleet on here to see if she may have something like that.
  7. ranchhand

    ranchhand Rest in Peace 1956-2011

    Aug 25, 2008
    I've never dealt with it so I can't help. Sorry you and your hen are having to deal with this though.
  8. Cowgirl71

    Cowgirl71 Songster

    Feb 5, 2010
    Missouri Ozarks
    I looked up vent gleet and I don't think that's it... They say it's quite uncommon, especially in mature birds, and is caused by feeding old moldy feed. I always use fresh feed and check it each time before filling the feeder. The symptoms don't sound quite right either. Thanks for the suggestion though!

    And thanks for the concern everyone... [​IMG] I'm not really attached to this hen, which I guess is a good thing. Being a GLW she sure is gorgeous though! And I hate to see her suffering. [​IMG] But I would of been absolutely devastated if it were Blue Bell, Michelle, or Shimmer...

    BTW, so that I can be prepared, what are the symptoms of being egg bound? I have enough chickens - bred for high egg production - that I'm gonna come across it sooner or later...
  9. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia Loving this country life Premium Member 8 Years

    eggbound means they have an egg in there that needs to be laid but got stuck. Can you check her abdomen and see if she has a mass in it or an egg shape in it?
  10. chickerdoodle

    chickerdoodle Songster

    Aug 21, 2009
    If you can feel a mass such as an egg as the previous poster mentioned or highly suspect one I would at least try warm, moist heat for a good 20-30 minutes to be sure nothing is stuck further up. Its a good idea to do this by placing her in a nice tub or sink of warm--but not too hot that it would burn her or make her pant--water that should reach about her hocks for a half hour or so. You can add some more warm water if necessary. Then she can be placed on a warm towel indoors in a small area or crate with enough room for water and a scrambled egg to eat or her favorite food as well as to get away from the warm towel. You can repeat the moist heat treatment (don't get her over heated) but if after a few hours nothing improves (or if she gets worse) you may have to try Preparation H for prolapse.

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