Little bantam is straining; what's wrong?

Texas Tillie

Chirping
Mar 16, 2016
10
4
59
North TX
I don't know what's wrong with my girl. I wormed my three bantams on 5/26 and all seemed okay after that. But, I've noticed she seems "off" the last few days; saw her straining with some diarrhea in the nest box the last two evenings, but when I gave her an epsom salt bath today I saw that's she constantly "pumping". She had a messy butt--caked white stuff--but all of that soaked off pretty easily. I read to rub oil on her vent so I did that. Her belly feels tight and round--could she be eggbound? I can hear a faint click in her breathing--is that a respiratory illness? I put a little molasses in her water, but I know that's not good with the diarrhea, depending on what's causing it. I have antibiotics but it's old and I haven't given her any. She's walking around, eating, and drinking, but something is wrong. I don't know much about chickens; can anyone help?

Also, I have pictures of her butt, but didn't want to just throw those in without a warning!
 

Eggcessive

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Apr 3, 2011
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How old is she and does she normally lay eggs? A tight and enlarged lower belly can be from internal laying or ascites, especially if she has not been laying regularly. I would keep an eye on her the next 24 hours in a dog crate with food and water, to see if she is passing droppings. You can insert a finger an inch inside her vent to feel for a stuck egg. Make sure that she continues to eat and drink normally.
 

Texas Tillie

Chirping
Mar 16, 2016
10
4
59
North TX
I'm not sure how old she is. I adopted two bantams a year ago to be companions for my 7-year-old bantam who had survived her longtime friends. I was told they were young, 10 months or so, but I really don't know. I think she had been laying but I never see who lays what. None of them are laying now. I read about ascites just today and that sounds awful. Is there nothing I can do? What am I watching for? Should I give her another epsom salt bath? She is definitely passing droppings and actually just had a more normal-looking one. Thank you for responding!!!
How old is she and does she normally lay eggs? A tight and enlarged lower belly can be from internal laying or ascites, especially if she has not been laying regularly. I would keep an eye on her the next 24 hours in a dog crate with food and water, to see if she is passing droppings. You can insert a finger an inch inside her vent to feel for a stuck egg. Make sure that she continues to eat and drink normally.
Also, I don't think I'd know if I felt an egg or just internal tissue/muscle/whatever. Is it obvious if it's an egg?
 

Eggcessive

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If there is an egg, it will fell hard like a shell. If no egg, it will feel soft like the rest of the vent. She might have a buildup of the white urates inside, like what you already cleaned off. Lash egg material sometimes can block the vent or be felt. Lash eggs are masses of thick material due to an oviduct infection called salpingitis. They can be many shapes and flesh colored. Hopefully, your little hen doesn’t have anything serious.
 

Texas Tillie

Chirping
Mar 16, 2016
10
4
59
North TX
If there is an egg, it will fell hard like a shell. If no egg, it will feel soft like the rest of the vent. She might have a buildup of the white urates inside, like what you already cleaned off. Lash egg material sometimes can block the vent or be felt. Lash eggs are masses of thick material due to an oviduct infection called salpingitis. They can be many shapes and flesh colored. Hopefully, your little hen doesn’t have anything serious.
I figured that it wouldn't be a hard shell if she was bound; just assumed it would be one of those rubbery ones that one of my old chickens laid once or twice. So, I'll see if I can feel something. But, what would lash eggs/masses of thick material due to salpingitis feel like? I don't pull that out, do I? Will it feel different from the crusty white urates if that is inside the vent? Her vent looks so clean, but admittedly I haven't felt in there.
I forgot to tell you, I did already have her isolated from the other two in a dog crate away from them.
 

Eggcessive

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I haven’t felt a lash egg, but was just telling you it might be something that could be there. I would assume they might feel like a piece of meat or tissue. I would’t try to pull anything out. If she passes some droppings, then she probably is not egg bound or have a lash egg blocking her vent.
 

Texas Tillie

Chirping
Mar 16, 2016
10
4
59
North TX
I haven’t felt a lash egg, but was just telling you it might be something that could be there. I would assume they might feel like a piece of meat or tissue. I would’t try to pull anything out. If she passes some droppings, then she probably is not egg bound or have a lash egg blocking her vent.
You don't know how much I appreciate you right now! I put her in another epsom salt bath outside. (It's almost 90 here.) I didn't feel anything in her vent but soft and smooth. I'd read somewhere else on here to use a cotton swab with oil in the vent and I did that and nothing solid came out but it did bring out some creamy stuff. Is that just urates? She doesn't really like the bath like it seems that most chickens do so I didn't make her stay long. And since her breathing sounds a little weird I'm afraid she'll get chilled even though it's so hot here. I don't know what else to do for her. Would ACV in her water do any good? If so how much? Would it possibly help to give her antibiotics? It's powder type and I think it's a few years old so I won't do it unless someone says it would be safe. (Has been stored in the house in a cabinet.)
 
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