lethargic hen losing weight


10 Years
Sep 1, 2009
my best layer from my small urban flock has had a dirty but for a couple weeks, but seemed fine. i figured i was just feeding her too many tomatoes from the garden. She is still laying but i noted last night on the free range period that she was moving kind of slow and just sat down a couple times. i later picked her up to return her to the run for the night and noted she had lost weight.

any ideas?
other than loser than normal, i really don't have any other information on her poop, and i there really isn't any other symptoms. She is still laying and her comb is bright red. But she is losing weight and is not as interested in food. i suspect if this keeps up, she won't be laying for long. She is about 13 months old.
I copied this from the info thread
Give us the following information. The more you tell us, the better we will be able to help you.

1) What type of bird , age and weight.
2) What is the behavior, exactly.
3) How long has the bird been exhibiting symptoms?
4) Are other birds exhibiting the same symptoms?
5) Is there any bleeding, injury, broken bones or other sign of trauma.
6) What happened, if anything that you know of, that may have caused the situation.
7) What has the bird been eating and drinking, if at all.
8) How does the poop look? Normal? Bloody? Runny? etc.
9) What has been the treatment you have administered so far?
10 ) What is your intent as far as treatment? For example, do you want to treat completely yourself, or do you need help in stabilizing the bird til you can get to a vet?
11) If you have a picture of the wound or condition, please post it. It may help.
12) Describe the housing/bedding in use

Remember that we are not veterinarians. We help based on our own research and experiences.
We cannot monitor the board 24/7, and therefore do not guarantee we can always help, much as we would wish to.
We should never be a replacement if real medical attention is required.
If your situation seems to require a trip to the vet, please do so. It is always a good idea to know of an avian vet in your area in case your situation is bad enough that we cannot help. We encourage you to visit the Reference Forum and read up there before you need the information.

Some important links to read:

Links to disease symptoms and information
Chicken Anatomy
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Is she losing feathers?????????? The molt can bring on weight loss and they look really bad for a time. What colour is the poo?????
You might need to give her some infant vitamins in her water to biuld her up. Keep her away from the other birds if possible incase she has something that could pass through the flock. Try to give her Yogurt and boild egg as this biulds her up especially if she is starting to molt?

I don't know much about this. I had two chickens with similar symptoms. One died and I treated the other for worms and she got better. I don't know if she got better on her own or it was the Wazine, but you might try it.
Her Poo Is Yellowish And Very Runny.

She Looks Much Worse Today. I Am No Optimistic, But I Can't Afford To Take Her To A Vet.
The runny poo is consistent with worms, but it is also consistent with other things too. I would still try getting a wormer if I were you. You can get it at Tractor Supply stores and most places that sell feed.

As I mentioned, I struggled with this and decided to treat for worms, which seemed to work. Here is the thread of my discussion for the similar problem: https://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=397171&p=1

some of the advice that I had gotten you might find helpful.
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I agree with Chicken Chickita, most likely it's worms. Since the hen is over 1 year old and probably has never been wormed....I recommend you worm all your chickens with wazine first. Then follow up in 10-14 days with a different wormer to kill larva and other different types of worms.

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