Hen w/swollen comb -- help!

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by LeahH19, Jan 29, 2011.

  1. LeahH19

    LeahH19 New Egg

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    Jan 29, 2011
    Hi new here ...
    I have one hen -- 4 y.o. buff orpington -- her comb has gone purple and the top is swollen. The bottom, toward her beak, is smaller, almost atrophied. She's moving slowly and seems chilled -- she's fluffed up where my other hens are not. She's the only one doing this and other than being mildly lethargic and having the issue with the comb, she is behaving normally -- eating, drinking, moving.
    I have no idea what this could be or what is the appropriate next step. I have separated her from the other hens but done nothing else out of the ordinary.
    Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
    Thanks
    Leah
     
  2. Higins00

    Higins00 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Nov 19, 2008
    Ct
    Is it cold where you are? Could be frostbite.
     
  3. LeahH19

    LeahH19 New Egg

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    Jan 29, 2011
    It's been in the 20s and 30s, so yes. I'm nervous that she's got an infection ... we've had chickens for about 8 years and never a sick one, so I don't know what I'm looking for.
    What does one do for frostbite on a chicken?
     
  4. Higins00

    Higins00 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Nov 19, 2008
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    I know it will turn black. You are suposed to put vasaline on it to protect it. It may die off if it's bad. Sounds likes she's cold if she's fluffed. Can you bring her in somewhere for a few days and see how she does?
     
  5. LeahH19

    LeahH19 New Egg

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    Jan 29, 2011
    Yes, I think we'll have her in the house for a bit and see what happens. Thanks!
     
  6. chickerdoodle

    chickerdoodle Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 21, 2009
    Oregon
    Once its dead its dead and I think (not 100% positive though) purple may be already dead or too far gone. I hope someone else says differently.

    To help prevent frostbite you can put some Vaseline on the combs and wattles. Making sure there is good ventilation in the hen house is important as any moisture build up will freeze quickly on combs and wattles when the chicken goes out doors. This means its better to have good ventilation than a tightly closed up house even in really cold weather (no direct drafts though).

    Purple comb can also mean lack of oxygen. I'd take her indoors and make her comfy and warm and give some scrambles or chopped hard cooked eggs and if she'll eat her normal feed. Add vitamins and minerals to her water (as long as she'll drink it) and see if that helps. Does she still lay eggs?
     

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