My first chicken death. What did I do wrong? :(

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by 3chickchicks, Aug 30, 2013.

  1. 3chickchicks

    3chickchicks Songster

    Jun 25, 2013
    N. Texas
    Here's the original thread.

    She seemed to be doing better today and had been eating. I went out not ten minutes ago and she was on the ground and wouldn't get up and had labored breathing, no wheezing or gurgling. DH and I brought her inside. She suddenly began gasping and then she slipped away. Her stools had been normal.

    I started corrid on the other two just in case. They're acting happy and healthy. Could it have been a heart abnormality or something?

    She was such a sweetie. Good bye, Ms Ruth. :(
  2. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician

    May 3, 2009
    New Jersey
    Chickens can suffer from heart abnormalities and heart attacks. Generally birds with such a condition will show a darkening/purpling of their comb and wattles in addition to shortness of breath.

    I doubt that you did anything wrong - sometimes they just die suddenly.
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2013
  3. 3chickchicks

    3chickchicks Songster

    Jun 25, 2013
    N. Texas
    Her eyes were crystal clear and her mouth was moist. What waddles she had started to grow were red but the tiny comb on top seemed pale. In fact, it has been more pale than the others her whole life.
    It was really hot today, 107. Maybe she had a condition and the heat put her over the edge? She did seem a little more sensitive to the heat than the others.

    Will the two be okay by themselves? I got three because I thought that was the minimum to keep. I don't want to get another during this heat wave. The only birds available would be younger and I'm not sure how adding them into the flock would go. Mine are still adolescent so maybe they'd be okay? Or maybe I should wait for one to go broody next year and give her a chick?

    Poor Ms. Ruth. I wish I could have helped her. She was a sweet girl.
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2013
  4. Nambroth

    Nambroth Fud Lady

    Apr 7, 2011
    Western NY
    My Coop
    Are you able to get her necropsied? I didn't have chickens when I was in TX so I don't know if the state extension office offers free or low cost necropsy of poultry. It might be worth asking! If so, keep her cool but not frozen. I do not mean to sound weird but it is best to keep them in the fridge. This is a long weekend so it is up to you if you want to try.. it's best to get them in within a day or two of passing. It would give you some answers that sadly most of us here cannot really provide you without looking at her in person. So many things can go wrong with our birds even when we do our best by them, do not feel it was your fault.

    As mentioned before, heart problems usually are accompanied by a very dark comb.. maroon to purple, not at all pale in appearance. I observed this with my roo who had tumors in his heart.
  5. seminolewind

    seminolewind Flock Mistress

    Sep 6, 2007
    spring hill, florida
    I had a Faverolle who was always a pale comb and she couldn't take the heat. She was 4 years old and was put down last week. I believe the heat did her in, and for some reason she didn't drink enough.

    I do put ice in their water if it's over 90 degrees. And a fan blowing on the nests where they lay. Sometimes I run water and make them a puddle to put their feet in. I don't know if yours died from heat, it could be anything. [​IMG]

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