Lethargic chicken eating and drinking little - lethargic today

CarriPage

In the Brooder
Feb 6, 2019
16
28
49
Katy, TX
We have a small flock of hens just over a year old. Our buff Orpington Laverne was acting a little 'off' last night. We let them out of their run to free-range the backyard for about an hour each evening - she came out and was walking around some, but wasn't pecking at the grass like the others. She sat for a while. We checked and her crop felt empty so we gave her a little Nutri-Drench directly and then put out some mash (just their chicken feed with water and a little scratch) and she showed some interest and did eat some. Her crop wasn't super full, but was no longer empty. When we went out after dark, however, she hadn't put herself to bed in the coop with the others and was just sitting in the (outdoor) nest box. We moved her into the coop for the night.

We checked on her this morning and she was back in the nest box again. Worrying it was due to the heat, my daughter dipped her feet in some cool water for a little bit and tried to get her to drink. We tried nutri-drench and mash again but she just pecked a few little bites and then went back into the nest box.

She last laid an egg maybe 3-4 days ago - I know for sure she hasn't laid the last two days. Her butt does look dirty so diarrhea or wet poop possible but we haven't seen her go to know for sure. Her crop did feel empty this morning so I don't think sour crop. She is also walking normally and cannot feel any evidence of being egg bound.

We're just looking for a few more ideas of what to try. None of the other chickens are lethargic but we're in the Houston area and it has been especially hot these last few days. We have a large fully shaded run and have a fan blowing through it to help with air movement and flies. We have checked for lice and mites and do not see any evidence of such.

Thank you for any thoughts and advice.
 

casportpony

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Is a vet an option? If not, has she ever been de-wormed, and have you checked her thoroughly for lice and mites?
 

CarriPage

In the Brooder
Feb 6, 2019
16
28
49
Katy, TX
Is a vet an option? If not, has she ever been de-wormed, and have you checked her thoroughly for lice and mites?
Thank you for responding.

Yes, a vet may be an option but probably not until Monday. We've never taken any of our girls to a vet, so we would have to call around to find one that sees chickens. We have dewormed twice last year after seeing worms on their poop board. I will check again for lice or mites, but we did look her over pretty thoroughly last night.
 

CarriPage

In the Brooder
Feb 6, 2019
16
28
49
Katy, TX
Just wanted to update that we were cleaning her butt and trimming some feathers and saw an egg membrane partially out of her vent. We pulled the rest out so it looks like a shell-less egg busted inside of her. We gave her a warm epsom soak, my daughter felt about 1" into her vent to feel for shell and felt none. We gave her a tums to help her pass anything possibly left inside and she's back in the coop for the evening.

Thanks!
 

CarriPage

In the Brooder
Feb 6, 2019
16
28
49
Katy, TX
Could still use some help please! Here's the timeline:

  • Friday 6/5 - noticed she was slower, more tired, not pecking grass when freeranging but she did eat some mash
  • Saturday 6/6 - midafternoon noticed egg membrane coming from vent - removed, gave epsom soak and a Tums for calcium
  • Sunday 6/7 - eggy looking stuff on poop board under her spot. Still lethargic, not eating, some drinking. Daughter thought crop felt mushy but not sure
  • Monday 6/8 - crop feels empty this morning. Still lethargic. Not eating at all, not sure if drinking.
I've tried calling vets and none of the ones that treat chickens in our area have an appts available until Wednesday. We need to try something before then.

At this point, I'm considering tube feeding and giving her some Fish-mox just in case the egg matter inside her is causing an infection. Please advise what you would try if this were your chicken.

Checked the poop board this morning and no sign at all of any blood or worms in poop. No signs of lice or mites on her or any of the others.

Thank you!
 

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