Hen with swollen red abdomen, pecking (other chickens, and me!) excessively - Help!

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by chickenbaguette, Feb 25, 2012.

  1. chickenbaguette

    chickenbaguette Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 2, 2011
    Black is a Calder Ranger. We've had her for about a year now and I think she's about 4 years old. She's always had a slightly redder abdomen than the others but it didn't seem to irritate her or be any problem. Recently it's been slightly swollen and redder than usual, looks painful but doesn't seem to hurt her. May be uncomfortable - when I pick her up and put she wiggles her legs around, didn't do that before. She also has stumps of feathers there, around the top of her legs and on her wings, but she's had them since we got her.

    She never used to peck the other chickens much, but now she actually chases them whenever they come near her and grab their feathers. Yesterday she pulled one out of one of the bantams. When I took them into their cage for the night and left them for a while, I came back to find she'd cornered Parsley who was crouching down on the floor while she pecked her (hard) on the back. She's been doing that to the other bantams too, and doesn't stop until I shout at her. None of the other chickens have ever acted like this before.

    When any of us go out into the garden, she'll run over and peck our clothes too. She pecks anything that'll let her peck it (even a bag of bedding left outside the shed!) But she never pecks herself or picks her own feathers out.

    Does any of this indicate anything?
    Thanks for your time!
  2. DaughterOfEve

    DaughterOfEve Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 3, 2009
    Montague, MI
    If she is uncomfortable kore even in pain(animals don't show pain like people) that could certainly turn her very cranky. Lots of things a swolen abdomen might be. Egg bound, peritinitis, liver failing, tumor. Hope you find what is wrong.
  3. Judy

    Judy Chicken Obsessed Staff Member Premium Member

    Feb 5, 2009
    South Georgia
    Sometimes, also, feather picking is caused by a need for more protein in the diet.
    Last edited: Feb 25, 2012
  4. chickenbaguette

    chickenbaguette Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 2, 2011
    A bit late, but flockwatcher, thank you! That's it. She's been laying eggs with very weak shells too, so that would match. Protein and calcium. Thanks!

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