Hen with cold, puffy legs - no other symptoms -- fluid retention? Why?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by lceh, Oct 31, 2013.

  1. lceh

    lceh Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 15, 2008
    Central Virginia
    1) What type of bird , age and weight (does the chicken seem or feel lighter or thinner than the others.)
    1 1/2 year old Sussex hen --has always been small in size compared to the others, but lively and healthy

    2) What is the behavior, exactly.
    Extremely swollen legs, "squishy" with fluid, cold to the touch -- NOT lame, however, and no sign of injury/bumblefoot. Legs are not red or irritated. Eyes are bright, no paleness in comb/wattles, normal level of activity, just really puffy legs!

    3) How long has the bird been exhibiting symptoms?
    Unknown - just noticed today.

    4) Are other birds exhibiting the same symptoms?
    No.

    5) Is there any bleeding, injury, broken bones or other sign of trauma.
    None.

    6) What happened, if anything that you know of, that may have caused the situation.
    Unknown. We have suffered recent hawk attacks but this hen shows no sign of injury/trauma. She was formerly free-ranging but for the past 3 days she is penned up for the first time with the rest of the flock to protect from hawks.

    7) What has the bird been eating and drinking, if at all.
    Layer/breeder pellets, same as always - no change in diet.

    8) How does the poop look? Normal? Bloody? Runny? etc.
    Unknown, she is in a pen with 16 other birds.

    9) What has been the treatment you have administered so far?
    None, we're not sure what to do.

    10 ) What is your intent as far as treatment? For example, do you want to treat completely yourself, or do you need help in stabilizing the bird til you can get to a vet?
    Treat ourselves.

    11) If you have a picture of the wound or condition, please post it. It may help.
    See below.

    12) Describe the housing/bedding in use

    Bedded in shavings.

    My first thought was that this is similar to what you see in humans with heart, kidney, or circulation issues. She seems bright and active enough, no listlessness. She has always been a runt. She was vaccinated for Marek's at the hatchery. My main concern is whether or not this is something contagious, and what we should do to help resolve the issue.


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  2. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive True BYC Addict

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    The only conditions I can think of causing enlarged legs would be gout or osteopetrosis, but both of those would have hard swollen legs, and gout would have misshapen toes. For soft swollen legs, I would suspect bumblefoot infection. You might want to re-inspect the feet for any puffy pink pads or the telltale dark spot. Here is some info on gout: http://en.engormix.com/MA-poultry-i.../avian-gout-causes-treatment-t1246/165-p0.htm
     
  3. lceh

    lceh Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 15, 2008
    Central Virginia
    Yes, bumblefoot came to mind, but the foot is not really swollen, just the legs, and I see no sign of injury to the footpad. Plus it's in both legs (although one is worse than the other). If it were an infection it seems like the puffiness would be warm/hot to the touch. I'm really stumped. I hope someone can help me figure this out, it's very odd.
     
  4. huckabyfarms

    huckabyfarms New Egg

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    Did you ever find out what illness was causing the swollen legs? What was the outcome? I noticed the exact same problem on one of my speckled Sussex hens yesterday. Legs are swollen but not hot, fluid in both legs. Hen is mobile, no injuries.
     
  5. huckabyfarms

    huckabyfarms New Egg

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    Jan 24, 2016
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