Molting Hen - Not Eating, Excessively Drinking, Only Pooping Water

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by micstrachan, Oct 13, 2018.

  1. My Buckeye, Ruby, is having a tough time with her molt. She will not touch her feed, so only eats when they get free range time, which is not so much now that the days are getting shorter. She is drinking... excessively so, and is only pooping water. I’ve not seen this with a molt before. Could there be something else going on? She is perky and active when I let them out of the run after work, but I’ll find out this weekend how she’s doing during the day. Also, she’s been going to bed early, but she did rally and come out to free range, even after she went to bed. The litter under her roost is getting wet and I keep having to take some out. Advice? Do any of your hens do this during molt?
     
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  2. EggSighted4Life

    EggSighted4Life Free Ranging

    Sometimes a sign of blockage somewhere... have you monitored her crop overnight for emptying yet?

    Molt can be very hard on some birds, behavior is often affected.

    :fl
     
    Feathers Brady likes this.
  3. Yes, some of my birds act like they are dying when molting. But I haven’t seen the all-water poop. The good news is, she has been acting completely normal and foraging all day long. I love being home on the weekend so they get to free range a lot.
     
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2018
  4. Wyorp Rock

    Wyorp Rock Crossing the Road

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    Michelle, have you had a fecal float?

    Excessively drinking, is Ruby's crop empty in the mornings?

    Just some things to check.
     
  5. I haven’t been handling Ruby because of molting, but will definitely check her crop this morning. Have not had a float done in a long time. Saw two others with wet poop yesterday (one of which is a molter), so I’ll need to do that. There are so many feathers in the coop and run right now, poop inspection is difficult. My avian vet will not test poop without seeing the bird, so I’ll have to ask ask the dog vet, who is closed Sundays. I have liquid Corid on hand, but six waterers, so might want to reduce the number if I need to treat. The darn flock of Juncos can still get into the run, because the top on one half is still chicken wire. Have been putting it off because thad’s the 10-foot wide side and it will be difficult to do myself. Excuses, excuses. Maybe I’ll run to Home Depot for the lumber and hardware cloth right now.
     
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2018
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  6. Both Ruby and Millie had small, firm crops this morning. However, I let them out a little late, I know Millie is a feather eater, and suspect Ruby is, too. Will check again tomorrow morning earlier.
    Ruby definitely doesn’t feel well. She squawked a lot when I handled her, though, as her entire chest is a pin cushion. I am going to make a batch of scrambled eggs and douse in olive oil for protein and GI tract lubrication. I don’t think a treat like that could hurt and might be nice for the molters (5 of 9 are molting).
    I always tell others there is no harm in treating for coccidiosis, so I’m thinking I need to do the same.
     
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2018
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  7. Wyorp Rock

    Wyorp Rock Crossing the Road

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    If they both had firm crops this morning, I would work on those. I have a molter who this morning had a full crop before eating/drinking. I don't like to handle them like that, but I worked on her a little this morning and will again this evening to see if it clears.
     
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  8. I massaged Ruby’s crop for just a few seconds before bed, and it was not firm. I’ll check her early in the morning. I didn’t get to Millie, unfortunately. I was racing against the clock recovering the larger section of the run (replacing chicken wire with hardware cloth). I worked for five straight hours and only got half of it done. I’ll do a bit each night this week after work. I want it done by Thursday night, because I will be out overnight both Friday and Saturday (it’s a milestone high school class reunion and my sister is visiting, along with another friend). I just don’t know how reliable my family will be with locking up the girls. Plus the little Junco flock is driving me crazy and I fear they may be the cause of the watery poops.
    Thoughts on treating for coccidiosis without a fecal float? Nobody is lethargic, but a couple have watery poop.
     
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2018
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  9. Wyorp Rock

    Wyorp Rock Crossing the Road

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    The Corid won't hurt them, but normally I don't treat unless somebody is showing symptoms of lethargy. It's up to you.
     
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  10. Melody, how was your girl’s crop before bed? @Wyorp Rock
     

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