Lazy Hen? Or Sick?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by FreeChicken!, Nov 28, 2011.

  1. FreeChicken!

    FreeChicken! Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 14, 2010
    My Rhode Island Red hen, Victoria, is a little strange. Just lazy? I don't know. She's two and a half years old and is the average weight. But her legs and toes seem a little stiff and hard-muscled. Maybe it's just my imagination, I dunno. Victoria doesn't move as much as the other chickens and when she does, it looks a little stiff. A few months ago, she laid an odd, tentacle-like egg, but other than that her egg-laying is normal. Often, while the other chickens are pecking, digging, and wandering, Victoria just likes to stand in the corner of their pen closest to the gate (or sometimes on the perch) and stare at the ground, the other chickens, or me with sleepy-looking, half-closed eyes. When I lead the chickens to the backyard where the grass is greenest, the chickens follow so closely that I usually trip over them, especially the roosters. But Victoria follows so slowly that she often has to jump up and fly over to us, squawking as if she's saying, "Wait for me!"
    None of the other chickens are acting like her.
    This behavior has been going on for perhaps a year now without stopping. But on the other hand, it's not getting worse either. So I'm not very concerned, but I do often wonder if Victoria is sick or just lazy. Any ideas?
    Last edited: Nov 28, 2011
  2. Chicken_Pauper

    Chicken_Pauper Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 8, 2011
    Southern California
    Hum... have you wormed the flock? Some chickens are more sensitive to and show more symptoms when they have worms or mites. And, free range chickens (like mine) get worms more often, more easily, from the bugs and all that they eat.

    And/or much like people, some chickens just have a genetic problem, maybe she has a bad heart or something going on internally?

    If you haven't ever wormed, or haven't in months.. it might be good to worm her, or the whole flock with some Valbazen (safely kills all types of worms -- you would have to withhold her eggs -- or all eggs if you worm the whole flock).
    You can search here on BYC... "Worming with Valbazen".. and look for posts by dawg53 for good accurate info on worming orally with Valbazen.

    Other than that, I don't know. Some hens / chickens are just more weak than others.. check to see if she seems "meaty" or "thin"... also see if you can see her poop and check it. Maybe she got tapeworms? If she did it will take more treatments than the normal two doses of Valbazen, they are hard to get rid of. Can you, would you want to isolate her and treat just her for worms? And, see how she does?

    Well.. good luck... sorry I can't be more help... just giving my two cents worth, and maybe it's only worth one cent or so on this. Sorry.

    Take care.
  3. Tracydr

    Tracydr Chillin' With My Peeps

    Can you post a picture of her legs? Sounds like scaled leg mites. Is her comb nice and pink?
  4. FreeChicken!

    FreeChicken! Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 14, 2010
    Thanks for the advice, Chicken_Pauper. [​IMG]
    Well, Tracydr, her legs are fine, except that she walks a little stiffly, and her scales look normal. I could get you a picture though, like you said, just to be sure. I'll take it in the morning (it's nighttime right now) if I can find the camera.

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