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how long can an injured chicken not eat?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by BeardedChick, Nov 29, 2008.

  1. How long can she last if she won't eat?

    My poor hen is still not wanting to eat. She was injured Monday. I have been trying to make her drink several times a day, and she will usually drink some...

    She will not eat anything. I have been putting yogurt or cream of wheat on her beak and she will eat what little bits stay on it. I can get perhaps a teaspoon into her twice a day.

    I have tried putting another chicken with her (non-aggressive ones, of course) , and for a short while today put her in a crate in a protected area of the free range. She is not at all interested in company, preferring just to lie alone.

    Her wounds are healing up, but she is not weight bearing on one leg. I can't find any injury to that leg or to the flesh above it so I am wondering if it's a soft tissue injury?

    I just hate seeing her feel so bad. Am considering putting her in a sling so she can be up.

  2. mountaintopchicken

    mountaintopchicken Songster

    May 23, 2007
    Maybe she is hurting too badly to be interested in food.

    There is a recipe for 'aspirin solution' for poultry here , maybe it would help?


    Used as a general treatment for reducing distress conditions of birds (fever or listlessness) that accompanies many diseases.

    Dissolve five (5 grain) aspirin tablets in one gallon of water.

    Offer this solution free-choice to the birds for the duration of an illness. The solution aspirin equivalent to 25 grains/gallon or 324 mg/gallon of drinking water. The dosage rate is about 25 mg/lb body weight per day.

    That's just a wild guess though. Could have something to do with the nature of her injuries instead... hope she starts eating and getting better soon.
  3. redhen

    redhen Kiss My Grits... Premium Member

    May 19, 2008
    Western MA
    aaw!..sorry to hear about the chickie!..[​IMG]...have you tried warm scrambled eggs maybe?...i dont know, i wish i could help you..sorry, Wendy
  4. Thanks - I had been giving her aspirin until yesterday. I will add it back in.

    I wish there was something else for avian pain control.
  5. Hey, I found a possibly useful reference in a Google book for avian pain control:

  6. Poohbear

    Poohbear On a Time Out

    Nov 12, 2008
    Mix some milk and sliced bread to a wet consistency. Open her beak with your left hand and literally put a small piece of milk soaked bread in her mouth. Give her time to swallow then do it again. 4 or five pieces two or three times a day till she is getting better.
  7. I've tried EVERYTHING I can think of to get her to voluntarily eat. Eggs, meat tidbits, oatmeal, yogurt... Of course, her usual scratch and layer food.

    Have not tried force feeding, but that's an option when it comes down to that or culling her.

  8. redhen

    redhen Kiss My Grits... Premium Member

    May 19, 2008
    Western MA
    Quote:Man!..that really sucks!..Maybe once her pain lessons she will be more interested in food...i know its not that healthy for them but what about bird seed?..mine love it when i throw them some as a treat...what about grits or cornmeal...i mixed grits and cornmeal with water and nuked it..they also went crazy for that...i'm sorry, just tryiing to give ya food ideas to try to tempt her to eat...best of luck!, Wendy
  9. I'll try cornmeal. I think cream of wheat is the same as grits. She won't eat that.

    I mixed up some fresh terramycin & aspirin water and dosed her just a few minutes ago.

    Might try giving her a raw egg yolk tonight. I don't really want her eating eggs, but what the heck.

    I could not figure out how to open her beak. She gets mad & fights me.
  10. jjthink

    jjthink Crowing

    Jan 17, 2007
    New Jersey
    I once had a roo who was injured and didn't eat or even move for 7 days - I kept him warm and comfortable and in a stress free area and he did fully recover.

    You can give your hen 3 drops of Polyvisol Enfamil daily for a week to help her nutritionally during this difficult time. I place the drops slowly and carefully one at a time along their beak line and let them swallow on their own. I do not even try to open their beak. They may shake some off and so you have to keep track. My hen Ellie shakes her beak such that the drops go directly in my eyeball (the stuff stings!) but eventually she gets some too.

    I hope she'll get well.

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