LS hen poorly

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Red, Aug 8, 2009.

  1. Red

    Red Songster

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    Mar 17, 2007
    Milly, my LS, isn't acting herself. She's 5 years old, has always been healthy before, lays the odd egg every now and then. The chickens are fed corn, grit, odd treats such as apples, raisins, cereal, lettuce, cabbage.

    She was fine yesterday, active, alert and eating well.

    Today she is just standing or laying in one spot, fluffed up and depressed. I've sat with her and all she wanted was a cuddle. She's very quiet, and didn't rush out into the garden when I let them out of the coop.

    She has had a few pecks at an apple, but without much enthusiasm. I've added apple cider vinegar to their water in the hope it'll help in some way...

    I have to go out for the whole day today until late evening, so won't be able to check on until her then. I have no idea if she is pooping normally. I checked her crop and it feels 'squishy'...i'm not sure if this is because it's morning and she hadn't eaten, or could be sour crop or something??

    I gave it a massage, anything else i should be looking out for / doing?

    I'll keep you updated when I get back tonight. Help much appreciated, thank you [​IMG]

    Red
     
  2. obe10

    obe10 Songster

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    Jul 14, 2009
    Irmo, South Carolina
  3. dlhunicorn

    dlhunicorn Human Encyclopedia

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    Keep up the acidification in the water (ACV) dont give any grains whatsoever... .
    I would withhold feed altogether for 24 hours ...If it is hot then put her in a cool place with electroytes in the water.>Offer a separate bowl with live culture yogurt yogurt in it and see how she reacts to that after 24 hours and recheck the crop to see if it has gone done and is still gaseous and report back here (including description of poos and if she is drinking and other symptoms you have noted)
    After the 24 hours, give her normal pelleted feed (if at all possible go get some baby parrot hand feeding formula >pet store< and mix that in with the feed to moisten and concentrate the nutrition)...
    No treats and certainly no grains.
     
  4. Red

    Red Songster

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    Mar 17, 2007
    Thank you for the advice.

    I will post again tomorrow (it's late at night here and the girls are in bed) after I have had a chance to re-examine her and wait for a poop.

    I will remove grain now whilst she is sleeping, and will get some yoghurt tomorrow. Thank you.
     
  5. threehorses

    threehorses Songster

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    Apr 20, 2009
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    I would agree on getting some pellets for her. I know she's been raised all this time on corn and possibly free range stuff, but that probably explains why she's never laid and having issues now. Corn is high in phosphorus and so high that a long term diet (without other stuff) can actually make birds start to use their own calcium from their bodies (their bones) to make up for the imbalance.

    She really need vitamins, minerals, calcium from the ffeed, etc.

    At this point I'd keep her only on easily dissolved feeds for at least a week. Crumbles (or make the pellets into crumbles, buy "laying" formula please), some yogurt, you can give her babyfood applesauce once or twice during the week (1 teaspoon or less) to help cleanse her system and keep her crop moving, boiled egg put in the food processor til it's all ground up. The organic apple cider vinegar in the water (1 teaspoon per gallon) will help get her digestive tract pH back into a good pH for good bacteria, bad for bad bacteria. It'll also clean out any sludge in the crop and digestive tract. Use organic because it still has bacteria.

    Honestly because she's ill and behind on nutrition, I'd also give her the vitamins daily in the beak - Polyvisol baby vitamins (non-iron-fortified, from the vitamin section of the store) 3 drops daily for a week.

    Hopefully with you watching to make sure she eats these healthful foods, the yogurt providing more good bacteria so the changes don't overwhelm her, keeping her cool and hydrated, and a change of diet - for them all - should help her and the entire flock.
     
  6. Red

    Red Songster

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    Mar 17, 2007
    Hi, thanks for the reply, sorry i didn't explain myself properly.

    For all of their life the girls have been fed layers pellets mixed with corn, have access to grit if they want it, and then have other treats as well. We've had Milly since she was 12 weeks old and she's never had any health problems before, apart from a mite infestation several years ago.

    As a youngster in her first few years Milly (and the other two) laid very well, Milly producing almost an egg a day. Now they're older ladies they don't lay so much.

    They do normally eat layers pellets, but we ran out and so have been eating just corn until we buy some more.

    Hope that helps clarify things - sorry, my fault.

    I'm going down to sit with her now, and my dad's going to the shop to pick up some yoghurt for her. Thanks.
     
  7. Iowa Roo Mom

    Iowa Roo Mom Resistance Is Futile

    Apr 30, 2009
    Keokuk County
    5 years old is getting up there for a chicken. Make her comfotrable and spend time with her. Enjoy each other's company, and keep us updated.
     
  8. Red

    Red Songster

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    Mar 17, 2007
    Thanks. She seems a little better today i think (touch wood)

    She's a lot more active and vocal, and is doing a little bit of pecking and scratching. She came out with the other girls this morning and sat on my lap and watched my dad fix a wall in their coop, then we went and bought her some live cultured yoghurt.

    I took her away to the top of the garden so she could eat it in piece, and gave the other two girls some of their own with some biscuits and corn mixed in.

    Milly ate well and seemed to enjoy her yoghurt, so that has to be a good sign surely?

    She also did a poo (I've never been so glad to see a chicken poo [​IMG] ) and am happy to report that although it has an ever so slightly green tinge it is solid and 'normal' looking.

    Thanks again, I'll let you know how she goes on!
     
  9. dlhunicorn

    dlhunicorn Human Encyclopedia

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    Have you ever wormed your birds? What has the weather been like where you are? Look around the area outside where they are ranging and make sure there are no hidden spots of mold damp or forgotten grains laying around .
     
  10. Red

    Red Songster

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    Mar 17, 2007
    Hi, yes we worm our birds with Flubenvet (i think that is what it is called and how it is spelt). I think they were last wormed in April, some time around Easter anyway. How often should chickens be wormed?

    Also, I was wondering how you can spot an older egg bound hen? Is it common in older chickens?

    We lost one of our original hens after becoming eggbound when she was a year old, this was before we had Milly, and when Milly began standing still and acting depressed I was terrified she had become eggbound. How can you tell in an older chicken who doesn't lay very often?

    The weather has begun getting warm again after weeks or cold rain, it's about 22 C so somewhere around 72 F i think. The girls are normally under shade and the sun doesn't reach them until early evening when it has cooled down a fair bit.

    I'll have a thorough check for damp / mould when I get back home tonight. Thank you for your help [​IMG]
     

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