Hen with feather loss, swollen belly, weight loss

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by turkeymom, May 12, 2011.

  1. turkeymom

    turkeymom Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 15, 2010
    SE Tennessee
    Hi! I'm hoping someone can direct me where to start with my 1 year old austrolorp hen who is showing some worrisome symptoms.

    About a month ago, I noticed some feather loss in her breast. She was pretty plump, so I thought her breast was rubbing something and causing the feather loss. There was no sign of lice or picking. It was a roundsih circle about 4 inches in diameter. I also noticed at that time a similar circle closer to her vent underneath, but only 2 inches in diameter.
    I've been keeping an eye on her and she eats well, acts normal. But, I just returned from being away for a week, and I can clearly see that she's lost some weight. Also, the bald patch underneath near her vent seems reddish and a little swollen. I don't think she's egg bound b/c she does lay - maybe every other day. I did notice a funny line on her egg this morning but the shell was intact.

    Any ideas?
     
  2. turkeymom

    turkeymom Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 15, 2010
    SE Tennessee
    Well, I gave her some Valbazen wormer and she ate the bread and eggs I fed her.

    Should I try an antibiotic?
     
  3. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble

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  4. turkeymom

    turkeymom Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 15, 2010
    SE Tennessee
    Thanks, Dawg53, the egg from today was 'body-checked' at the 'waist' according to the website. They said it could be illness (like bronchitis), stress, poor nutrition, or anything really. I haven't noticed any sneezing or running beaks, so I don't know. The only thing we do unusual is feed Flockraiser with oyster shell on the side. Another of my birds had problems with weak shells, so I've started offering layer pellets in addition to the flockraiser and oyster shell. But surely that wouldn't cause feather loss.

    Still, I'm thinking something else is going on. Maybe some sort of internal damage from an egg?
     
  5. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble

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    Feather loss besides lice or mites can be caused by molt, feather picking, too much rooster mating...increasing protein intake might help using gamebird feed. It has higher protein content 22%-26%, try it and see if it helps if you wish. Stress can also cause mishapen eggs. I didnt mention IB (infectious bronchitis) because it can cause mishapen eggs and watery whites...but the other symptoms wernt there in your case. ETA; I agree with you, it could possibly be an internal issue. Good luck.
     
    Last edited: May 12, 2011

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