How to tell if my hen is just cold or actually ill?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Imachicklvr2, Dec 24, 2013.

  1. Imachicklvr2

    Imachicklvr2 Out Of The Brooder

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    May 27, 2013
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    I have an EE hen that seems to be miserable in the current temperatures. For the past few weeks she has pretty much stayed in the coop, not moving around much and not overly interested in treats. I thought she was sick but then we had a few warm days and she was out and about like normal. Now that the temperatures have dropped into the teens and single digits again, she is back to not leaving the coop and just sitting there all puffed up. She is not sneezing, there is no nasal discharge, she just seems lethargic. I was tempted to bring her in the house and see if warming her up would help but I don't want to create an even bigger problem for her when I put her back out in the coop. I am pretty sure she is still laying occasionally, but not absolutely positive. She is the only one out of 16 chickens that seems to be having this problem. The others seem to be just fine. Does anyone have any suggestions on how to determine if she is just not acclimating to the cold or if she is really sick. There are no obvious signs of illness and I did break down and put a heat lamp in my coop which I swore I was not going to do, She is huddled directly beneath it and does seem a bit happier.
     
  2. ChickensAreSweet

    ChickensAreSweet Heavenly Grains for Hens

    Hmm she sounds ill...like she is fighting something off.

    I would consider coccidiosis, worms, mites/lice, and go from there.

    So inspect her poo for any diarrhea if you can, and worms, and do a check for mites/lice (also you can check your coop at night to see if there are any mites coming out at night). Sometimes it is just one chicken that seems ill when there is a problem for everyone.

    It can be hard to guess the problem. Check her crop in the morning to see if it emptied if you can.

    Has she been exposed to new soil or new flockmates?
     
  3. gander007

    gander007 Chicken Obsessed

    EE's can be moody sometimes but I think you might
    want to look her over real good from the bottom of
    her feet to the top of her head and maybe a hard
    boiled egg smashed up real good in a hand full of
    cooked rice I do this for my gal's from time to time
    if they seem a little different ...... [​IMG]


    gander007 [​IMG]
     
  4. Imachicklvr2

    Imachicklvr2 Out Of The Brooder

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    May 27, 2013
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    Thank you. Her poo is normal and I haven't added any new chickens or new soil to the run. Do you think it would be okay to bring her inside to get a better idea of what might be wrong? I am worried about having to put her back outside and having to adjust to lower temperatures again. I will check for mites here in a bit since it is dark and lice in the morning.
     
  5. Imachicklvr2

    Imachicklvr2 Out Of The Brooder

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    May 27, 2013
    Missouri
    Thanks Gander, I did give her some scrambled egg mixed with some grower but she was not overly interested. That could be because it was nearly dark when I gave it to her. I will give her a thorough inspection in the morning.
     
  6. ChickensAreSweet

    ChickensAreSweet Heavenly Grains for Hens

     
  7. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    My Coop
    I wonder if she is low chook in the order and if that could have anything to do with her seemingly more affected than the others?
     
  8. enola

    enola Overrun With Chickens

    I would say if she is cold and not eating that is absolutely necessary to warm her up to see if she gets better. This hen needs a good check up - looking at body condition is a good start. Is she thin? Is her comb pale? Is she eating this morning? Are any other chickens acting like her?
     
  9. Imachicklvr2

    Imachicklvr2 Out Of The Brooder

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    May 27, 2013
    Missouri
    Her body condition seems good and her comb is not pale but she is still lethargic. I have not seen her eat or drink either. I did end up bringing her in the house to see if she perks up and she is still just sitting there not doing much but is more alert than she has been. I did not see any signs of mites or lice so I am not sure what is going on. I am going to give her another going over in case I missed something the first time. None of the others act sick and she is about the middle in the pecking order. I am fairly certain she has something medical going on so now it is just figuring out exactly what it is because she is not giving me too many clues.
     
  10. whittychick

    whittychick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 28, 2013
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    Oh the poor girl [​IMG] Is there snow? I mean I know some chickens refuse to go outside in snow but she seems almost depressed or something. Is she laying? I hope whatever it is she perks up soon!!
     

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