Lame hen - looking for help!!

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by McGoo, Aug 11, 2008.

  1. McGoo

    McGoo Chillin' With My Peeps

    I just found her earlier today... away from the others and hunkered down. She's hopping, but seems to be a problem with her left leg. Not positive, but I think so.

    What should I look for? I'm truly not a vet and I don't know what would cause this.

    She's 2 years old, EE, and I think she laid an egg either today or yesterday. Her comb is red. She just doesn't want to stand if not necessary.

    ps. She seems lethargic too!

    THanks all.
    Last edited: Aug 11, 2008
  2. arlee453

    arlee453 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 13, 2007
    near Charlotte NC
    First step is to catch her and to examine the leg carefully.

    Look for any obvious injury (scrapes, wounds, etc).

    Check the bottom of the foot for signs of bumble foot - look for a big lump with a black core.

    Feel up and down the leg, up to the thigh - compare it to the other leg to see if you feel any swelling or possible broken bones.

    Post back what you discover, if anything.

    The general routine for injured or ill birds is to separate them out into a small pen or dog crate, with food and water available and watch for intake/output, etc.

    Keeping them in dim light and in a quiet location can help also.
  3. McGoo

    McGoo Chillin' With My Peeps

    Thanks for posting all this good info. I put her in a cat box and can place her in a dog pen, but thought that the smaller container would limit her moving much.

    I checked her out (feet, legs and thighs) and can't seem to feel anything wrong. Her feet look okay... no cuts or anything. And her leg joints seem to move okay. I keep thinking that this could be from the new young roo being agressive... hope that's all and it'll heal on it's own.

    Her crop is empty and she's not interested in eating. I don't want to force. I tried to get her to drink some electrolyte/ vitamin water - no luck. She kinda opens and closes her beak when I put some food on it, but she's not eating.

    She's not a really tame bird.. got her at 1 yr old, so not sure if my handling is freaking her out. Though seems that she is weak cause she's letting me handle her... but yet her comb is red.

    thoughts [​IMG]
  4. dlhunicorn

    dlhunicorn Human Encyclopedia

    Jan 11, 2007
    I would put electrolytes in her waterer and add a general supplement like avia charge through her feed (ill birds often refuse to eat and drink sufficiently)
  5. McGoo

    McGoo Chillin' With My Peeps

    I'll go to the feed store early in the morning and get the avia charge. How should I use it?

    Also, should I be trying to force her to eat. I certainly don't want her to aspirate or anything.

    thanks for your help.
  6. dlhunicorn

    dlhunicorn Human Encyclopedia

    Jan 11, 2007
    Check to see if the feed store has a good general supplement (the aviacharge has over seventy ingred for instance> all in the correct ratio to each other as recomended by the NRC) >your feed store wont have the aviacharge 2000 (you can order it from mcmurray or strombergs online) might also get a pack of that GROGEL they sell for chicks along with it... this is an electrolyte and if she refuses to drink the electrolyte water she might be willing to peck at that.
    Last edited: Aug 11, 2008
  7. McGoo

    McGoo Chillin' With My Peeps

    Thanks so much. I just ordered the stuff from McMurray. I wish I had a vet around here that would see my little gal. I'll see if my dog/cat vet can see her and tell anything.

    Thanks so much.

    I am wondering if it's something other than just being lame... maybe she's so weak from something else. But wouldn't her comb be light in color if that was the case? Her comb is red.
  8. sammi

    sammi Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 21, 2007
    Southeast USA
    wouldn't hurt to check her crop..if she isn't eating, it should feel empty, or flat..
    feel for any lumps or grainy feeling..or if it's soft and squishy.
    if you can..check her mouth for any sores or plaque..
    but you say she opens and closes her beak..
    could she have an injury?
    does the beak feel soft?

    is she panting?
    if so, this could indicate that she is either stressed, or in pain..
    1 (325mg) PLAIN ASPIRIN (NO substitutes)..crushed into a gallon of water might help with discomfort.
    recheck the back/hip/leg areas for any heat or swelling.
    the Grogel electrolyte will help with stress.

    it's possible she needs calcium..
    maybe a little plain yogurt, feed, egg yolk, and a little water cooked oatmeal mixed together will help her till you get the Avia Charge.

    fingers crossed that she gets better.
  9. McGoo

    McGoo Chillin' With My Peeps

    Thanks all for your advice.

    This morning she did eat her pellets. She would not eat yogurt,egg mix. She is drinking electrolyte water. Having trouble determining about joint leg issues. Don't feel any. Contact my pet vet and she says that she'll investigate and get back with me. Maybe she'll take a look at her later - I hope so.

    In the meantime, she's in a little cat box relaxing. Hope to keep her safe from possible predators by keeping her safe inside.

    ps. her crop was empty last night, but now she has eaten.
  10. McGoo

    McGoo Chillin' With My Peeps

    Thought I'd give a status.

    My hen's name is Estella... and she has been resting comfortably today in a little cat carrier. She did eat a little bit this morning, but her crop is empty now and she's definitely not showing signs of wanting to eat.

    I pryed her out of the carrier and she walked a couple of steps, but just went back into the box. She hasn't pooped all day that I can see.

    I'm hoping that the vet will call me back soon. I'm afraid to put her in the yard for fear that some predator will take her. My order of avia charge is on it's way, but that's days away.

    What else could it be? I see no signs of damage to her legs. Could she just be so weak that she can't stand up?

    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] At my wits end.

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