Internal Layer

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by sheridangirl, Jan 6, 2008.

  1. sheridangirl

    sheridangirl In the Brooder

    Jan 5, 2008
    Campo, CA
    This is a follow up to my post yesterday. Thanks for the great information. I followed the instructions for the egg bound condition with no luck. She is not pooping, just very smelly runny watery grey matter. She is still alert and is trying to eat. I don't hold out much hope for her but plan to keep her comfortable and put her down if necessary.

    Can anyone tell me if the problems associated with the internal layer condition is contagious. If so, how should I treat my chicken coop and my other birds?
  2. dlhunicorn

    dlhunicorn Human Encyclopedia

    Jan 11, 2007
    Your post of yesterday:
    The body area under my chicken's tail is swollen. She cannot walk. She is eating and alert. I thought she was egg bound but when I checked inside her vent, I can feel a large hard mass under the skin inside the bottom of her vent. I don't feel any eggs. Can anyone give me any ideas?

    ...a few members gave you some ideas based on your proposal it might be eggbound, you were also asked some questions but gave no answer...
    This is simply too little info to go on... we need to know the age of the bird, the breed, a little history incl what the housing, weather, feed you have been giving her... without some additional info and details I couldnt possibly even guess what may be going on with your bird. [​IMG]
  3. sheridangirl

    sheridangirl In the Brooder

    Jan 5, 2008
    Campo, CA
    The bottom area under her tail feathers is swollen and red and very hard. Her poop is greyish liquid and kind of black. It is not solid. She tries but is not walking right now. When she used to walk, she looked like a penguin and just recently had to start balancing with her wings on the ground. She is bottom heavy. I didn't find any egg when I checked inside her. I can, however, feel the large hard area on the bottom of her canal.
    She used to lay at least one egg per day and for the past month I haven't gotten any eggs from her. She has gotten thin. She still eats and drinks and is alert but somewhat listless.

    She is a Rhode Island Red and is 3 years old. We are in sunny San Diego and the weather has been chilly at night (40 degrees). She resides in a coop with a dirt and concrete floor. The only thing out of the ordinary is most of my flock of 35 was killed by a fox about the same time she stopped laying. She is 1 of only 7 that survived. I have been feeding laying mash, scratch and some oyster shell.

    I don't know if she has an infection but after viewing information on Internal layer condition, I believe that is what she has. I don't know if that is contagious to my other chickens and am not sure what to do for her or how to treat the other birds.
    Last edited: Jan 6, 2008
  4. pollysmum

    pollysmum In the Brooder

    Dec 24, 2007
    with the additional information my guess would be that she has either

    1. EYP..

    2. LL..

    EYP, no treatment available, when it turns septic the birds die, not something that will pass onto your other birds


    Big liver disease, LL, lymphatic leukosis, visceral lymphoma (one disease in the leukosis/sarcoma group)

    Common world wide

    System affected:
    Entire body

    Incubation period:
    14 days

    Usually chronic

    Virally induced cloacal malignancy of the bursal-dependent lymphoid system.
    Caused by certain members of the leucosis/sarcoma group of avian retroviruses.
    Occurs naturally only in chickens.

    Affecting chickens
    Transmitted through egg or brought in from adult infected birds to young
    Egg borne or transmitted to very young chicks from infected older birds.

    In birds 16 weeks or older (especially those nearing maturity): depression, death
    In birds over 6 months of age, death without symptoms or pale shrivelled comb, loss of appetite, diarrhea, and emaciation. Weakness; sometimes bluish comb, vent feathers spotted with white (urates) or green (bile); sometimes you can feel enlarged kidney, cloacal bursa, liver, or nodular tumors through skin
    In hens……….. reduced egg production, enlarge abdomen, loose droppings
    Weight loss.
    Green droppings, tumors, enlarged liver.
    Sick birds usually die.
    Deformed, thickened leg bones- sometimes

    Percentage affected:

    Up to 25 percent (rapidly following first symptoms)

    A group of retroviruses that primarily infect chickens and do not live long off a bird’s body

    Defies good management, but can be controlled by buying and breeding resistant strains (heavier meat birds are more resistant than lighter laying birds)
    Don’t mix younger birds with older birds
    Identify and eliminating breeders that produce infected chicks
    Not reusing chick boxes
    Raising chicks on wire
    Thoroughly cleaning facilities before introducing new birds; thoroughly cleaning and disinfecting incubator and brooder between hatches
    Controlling blood sucking parasites
    Brood away from older chicks
    Isolate sick or infected birds, and separation of adult from young birds.
    Avoid using the same needle for flock wide injections


    There is no treatment for lymphoid leukosis. Although the disease cannot be prevented completely, there are certain steps that can be taken to help control the level of infection within a flock. Some steps are:
    · Buy resistant strains of birds since genetic resistance is a deterrent,
    · Brood in isolation and do not mix birds of different ages, especially through six weeks of age,
    · Keep the incubator clean and disinfected,
    · Control blood-sucking parasites,
    · Good care, limiting stress, and adequate ration will be of benefit.
  5. dlhunicorn

    dlhunicorn Human Encyclopedia

    Jan 11, 2007
    The poo probably indicates she has not been eating... the shock of the attack could have affected her system badly enough to have affected in some way the reproductive system > there may be a softshelled egg "stuck"and then on top of that eggs "backed up" from it (though there might indeed be something else going on) Was she always a good layer before the attack occured or did she only lay on occasion? Have you been able to monitor her water intake? Did you give her electrolytes after the attack? (if she was in shock and not drinking, then a slight dehydration issue would have affected her system like a slight salt poisoning) ... Have you brought her inside? If not do so as she needs a temperature stable environment (keep warm)... the bathroom is the best place and hang out a wet towel to keep the humidity up a bit. ) Keep dark (if the bathroom is too busy in your household during the daytime, move her to a place where it is quiet (also temp stable and warm).
    In answer to an earlier question you posed, no , internal layer is not contagious.
    Get a good poultry supplement and if you suspect she has been drinking insufficiently, or if she is panting then add electrolytes/vit to her waterer (your feed store has this >one brand is Durvet) You can mix some cooked oatmeal through her feed (do not give anymore scratch) as this will aid in digestion...mix the poultry vitamins through that.
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2008
  6. sheridangirl

    sheridangirl In the Brooder

    Jan 5, 2008
    Campo, CA
    Sadly, my hen died. We did a postmortum exam and her abdomen had a hard mass of yolk in it and the actual lining was very thick.
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2008
  7. dlhunicorn

    dlhunicorn Human Encyclopedia

    Jan 11, 2007
    sorry to hear that but at least you now know what caused it and that your other birds are in no danger from what she succombed to :aww
    Unfortunately the only "cure" for internal/false layer is surgery which is very expensive and leaves the bird unable to lay eggs (so is only suitable for pets)...
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2008

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