I Need Help Imballanced Hen Otherwise Healthy Looking

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Chickery Chick, Nov 5, 2013.

  1. Chickery Chick

    Chickery Chick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    About 3 weeks ago, I found my top hen, a 5-year-old RR, unable to roost, hiding in the corner and acts lame or balance issue. But nothing was found for broken bones or foot problems, nor does she seem to favor a particular leg. I brought her in the house in a pen and she has a great appetite, normal poops, normal breathing, eyes normal, feathers normal, no droopy this or that or gooy eyes, sneezing, itching, nothing out of the ordinary other than she cant stand up for very long. She walks and seams normal for a bit but mostly just wants to sit on the ground. She can roost on a low elevated stick but very wobbly and out of balance, and then I find her later just sitting on the ground. She is a pet and has not laid an egg for probably a year. She is not egg bound, or swollen back end, no acities or anything lumping and bumping in the rear. Her crop empties at night and no yellow goo in mouth, or black spots on comb so not pox. I gave her electrolytes, added protein to her diet, wormed her with Safeguard and it did not change anything.

    I did my research here and found advice for niacin deficiency but it was for a duck. I also found that vitamins, “Save a chick” were recommended, but that was for younger chicks. I also seen Poly Vi Sol vitamins without iron was good for young chicks with vitamin deficiency. Although this could be the situation for this hen, why all of a sudden and a 5 year old hen and not the other 3 hens that are the same age suddenly become vitamin deficient? I also have 12 other young new bees just now starting to lay pullet eggs. No one is sick.

    The thing that makes me the most upset is this the only older hen I had that did not have acities and actually seemed the most healthy and robust until now.

    I guess my question is, should I cull her. I’m not seeing improvement, no suffering, or her getting worse, just the same. If I could get an idea of what it is and if there is hope for recovery, I’ll continue to keep her in the house. But if she is going to be forever lame or imbalanced it is not practical for me to keep her caged and in the house. I can’t put her back outside, she is unable to maneuver around enough to get food and water plus I think the others were pecking on, that is why she was in the corner hiding.

    Any guesses anyone or at least ideas on something I could administer or try to at least rule various symptoms out. I don’t want to cull her unless I know there is no chance of recovery. She does not seem to be suffering.
     
    Last edited: Nov 5, 2013
  2. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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    I would treat her for the vitamin deficiency for a longer period of time. There are poultry vitamins available in feedstores and online--Avian Superpak and Nutridrench are good. Save-A-Chick also works. She also could have Mareks disease. Culling is a personal choice.
     
  3. Soccerchicken

    Soccerchicken Out Of The Brooder

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    This same thing happened to my hen a few weeks ago. She may have just sprained her leg. Give her lots of protein and calium (You can feed her dry cat food and egg shells) and keep her in a separate cage so she can rest it.
     
  4. Chickery Chick

    Chickery Chick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Yep, I've got her on quality whole meat cat food and chicken feed all purpose. I'll try the Save-A-chick if Tractor supply has it on hand, otherwise I'll get the Poly Vi Sol vitamins without iron 2 drops a day is what I read for dosage. Boy, I sure hope she does not have Mericks, from what I read...bad stuff and that would mean my other chickens got it too. Cross fingers that is not what it is.
    Thanks guys for your input.
     
    Last edited: Nov 5, 2013
  5. Nambroth

    Nambroth Fud Lady

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  6. Michael Apple

    Michael Apple Overrun With Chickens

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    I would give a fast absorbing balance of nutrients like Nutri Drench for a day or two to see if the condition improves: http://www.bovidr.com/ingredients.html

    The only time I've witnessed the behavior you mentioned was with a hard moulting hen that blew feathers quickly.
     
  7. Chickery Chick

    Chickery Chick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks Apply, I found Nutri Drench 4 oz for 7.95. http://www.valleyvet.com Do you know if Tractor Supply carries this? I can go there this afternoon and would much rather purchase there than on the internet. Didn't know if it was worth my trouble to look for it at TS or just go ahead and order it on line. This does look like a good all purpose vitamin supplement that would act quickly to help determine the problem.

    Nambroth, thanks for the very informative link on vitamin deficiency. I'm at a bit of a loss as to which exact vitamin she would be needing as there are so many. Any input on which one to start with or most commonly needed that would be lacking in TC scratch grain for an older hen? What I found particularly interesting about your link was in some cases discharge can happen, due to vitamin deficiency. I always just assumed if something like that were to ever happen to me, I'd have a serious virus happening and would immediately cull. Good to know that that is not 100% always the case.

    Update: I went to check on her and she was actually standing in her cage a couple of different times, rather than sitting and seems more mobile. I switched to Victor Select dog food kibble, rather than the Cat food. It has biotin, chelated, quality whole meats, and probiotics added. Here is the ingredients http://www.victordogfood.com/ It is what I feed my dogs so had it on hand. Not sure if this made any difference or not. I'm still going to get a Nutri Drench or a similar product, if TC has it on hand, otherwise I'll go ahead and order it at valleyvet.com.

    I think I also need to consider a supplement for the rest of the flock. Currently they are on grain for all purpose because(4 old pet hens) no eggs, but now the young ones starting to lay last week so just purchased Egg Layer variety, both brands are the TC chicken feed brands(mustard color two tone bags). I find it hard to believe just one hen would be deficient and not the others. They do follow me around the farm yard when I'm feeding the dogs begging for a hand full, which I do give them. The chickens absolutely think this stuff is the best, but I always limited it because I was unsure if was safe or very healthy for them? Any thoughts on dog food kibble for chickens, pros or cons, given as just a treat or even as a supplement to boost protein etc.?

    Thanks everyone. I'm learning so much and appreciate all input. Nutrition/digestion certainly is an under-emphasized issue and often overlooked, for many species, when in fact a poor diet could be the beginning of a string of ailments with secondary illnesses that appear to be something else, that even Vets can often miss.
     
  8. Michael Apple

    Michael Apple Overrun With Chickens

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    A very simple and practical way to supplement is with water soluble powders. Probiotics found in Probios are easily absorbed by chickens: http://www.probios.com/powdersgranules1.html
    Avian Super Pack, compared to the rest of vitamin-mineral dispersibles, is much better quality: http://www.asp-inc.com/products/documents/prodinfo/a/avianspint.pdf
    I use both during breeding season, the cold seasons, during moult, after worming or medicating.
    The quality of feed matters most of all.
     
  9. Nambroth

    Nambroth Fud Lady

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    Hi Chickery Chick,

    With the signs you described, if she were my hen, I'd be considering supplementing with Vitamin E and maybe a B-complex. E deficiency can cause muscular dystrophy... http://www.poultrynews.com/New/Diseases/Merks/207020.htm
    It is not overly common in adult birds, but it can occur.
    Use care not to overdose her or any of your other birds in vitamin E... it is fat soluble and will accumulate in the body, which can cause help problems.

    The B-complex can be given though B deficiencies are thought to be quite uncommon... but it is water-soluble and won't harm her.

    I am a bit confused about their diet-- you said you feed Scratch Grain from Tractor Supply? Is this the main diet that is offered to your chickens or am I misunderstanding?
     
  10. Chickery Chick

    Chickery Chick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Tractor Supply Co. all purpose grain food is the main food source, especially in the winter, just now switching to layer crumbles, because young chickens just now starting to lay. In the summer they get squash, sweet corn, tomatoes, watermelon etc. surplus from the garden. They are also free range and eat bugs and whatever they can scratch up in the yard. Lots of weeds, dandelion leaves etc. But now with winter the TS grain will be the main food source and oyster shells added.
    I purchased at TS(because this is all they had for any type of food supplement and the only Farm Store in small rural town) a product called Kickin' Chicken.
    Guaranteed analysis:
    Total fatty acids/crude fat, min................98%
    Unsaponifiable matter, max...................2.0%
    Insoluble Impurities,max..........................1.0%
    Free fatty acids, max.............................0.50%
    Vitamin E, min.....................................250 IU/lb.
    Niacin, min........................................34,000 mcg/per lb
    Biotin, min...........................................5,000 mcg/per lb
    Vitamin B12, min...................................337 mcg/per lb
    Moisture, max...............................................0.50%
    Linoleic acid, min (Omega 6 fatty acid).........48%
    Linolenic acid, min (Omega 3 fatty acid)......8%

    Directions: 1sp. per 21lbs of body weight

    This is a liquid. I was hoping to put in water, but it says 2-4 drops per half ounce of seed mixture.
    Can I still put this is water?
    My chicken(s) probably weigh average 5 lbs. each
    Does anyone have experience with this product or one similar. If so, how much and is it ok to put in water?
    I don't want to overdoes.

    I got it right here all ready to use, just want to know it is ok and how much. I'll start with my imbalanced hen that I have in the house, and if good results and I don't kill her with it, I'll can add to food source for other 12 young chickens and 3 other 5 year olds, if advised?
     

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