Need Help Deciphering Necropsy Report Post #15

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Enchanted Sunrise Farms, Oct 25, 2012.

  1. Why is it always your favorites? Poor little girl. She was a bantam phoenix hen (i think). In a small coop, which is enclosed on one end (as in, walls, floor, roof). The other side has a roof, hardware cloth walls, and floor. The other four hens have always slept in the enclosed side, she always slept in the open side.

    No apparent injuries, the coop was not breached. i'm wondering if she could have died from the cold, since she slept alone. It had been very warm here, in the 90's. Then this last week it turned cold and rainy. Last night i think it got down to 45, so not freezing, and no wind. There are pens and coops on either side of this pen, and a large tree that overhangs the roof of the pen, so it wasn't sitting out on its own.

    i feel terrible. i was actually starting to worry that she might be too cold sleeping on her own, but then figured if she got cold she would join the others.

    In any case, i'm taking her into UC Davis for a necropsy this morning. And i need to make sure all our other coops are providing enough warmth for my girls. i'm just really sad. [​IMG]
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2012
  2. Coco Rae

    Coco Rae In the Brooder

    Oct 23, 2012
    I'm really sorry! Poor baby!
  3. Country4ever

    Country4ever Songster

    Oct 26, 2007
    I'm so sorry for your loss. It is always hard to lose one, especially when its your favorite.
    Had she been laying okay? Did her abdomen/crop feel soft and of normal size? Any mites/lice?
    I really don't think it was the cold. Sometimes they can die of fright, if there was a predator intimidating them outside the fence.
    Could she have broken her neck somehow? Was she laying okay? You didn't mention how old she was.
    Let us know what they find in the necropsy.
    Again, so sorry for your loss![​IMG]
  4. No sure about the laying. Out of those five hens, i may get one to three eggs a day, but less lately with the weather turning cold. Her abdomen does not feel abnormal. No mites or lice. Her neck does not feel broken. i think i hatched her in 2007, so five years old? She was okay yesterday, eating and drinking just fine, no sign of illness.

    i don't think she was exposed to a predator, unless it was tall. That coop is elevated, with the floor about four feet tall. Maybe an owl could have flown at the coop? i never would have thought of that.

    Thank you for the condolences Country and Coco. It means a lot. Sometimes i feel i just don't get enough closure when i lose one of my chickens. Feel like i need a memorial service to really move through it all.
  5. i have received the preliminary report on Sable. i'm a little befuddled as she did not appear overweight to me at all. i can post a picture of her once i find it on my other computer. All my chickens get Flockraiser, a handful of scratch in the morning, oyster shell calcium, mashed hard boiled eggs every week to 10 days with some fresh peas and corn, and romaine lettuce about once a week. i don't feed them empty calories. i feel terrible and wonder what i should change to prevent this in the future.

    Here are the findings:

    Gross Preliminary Diagnosis:
    1) Fatty liver hemorrhagic syndrome with:

    La b o r a t o r y F i n d i n g s / D i a g n o s i s
    A. Very soft liver.
    B. Ruptured right liver lobe with extensive intra-thoracoabdominal hemorrhage.
    C. Obese bird.

    Death is due to bleed out from rupture of the liver. This is a syndrome which occurs in obese birds. For some unknown reason , the liver in obese chickens often has a very soft texture predisposing to spontaneous rupture with mild trauma resulting in extensive hemorrhage and sudden death. While the underlying cause for the soft liver texture in these birds is unknown, altering the diet and/or nutritional plane of the birds to eliminate obesity is thought to be of the best means for prevention. Additional tests including select cultures and microscopic examination of tissues are pending and an updated report will follow.
  6. Suzie

    Suzie Crowing

    Jul 9, 2009
    I am just a humble learner in all of the wellbeing of our feathered friends.... only one item you have mentioned that could have been of any consequence (to me) would have been the feeding of corn/maize... if the amounts were small then I see no reason as to why she should potentially have been considered overweight, if however, the corn was given freely to the flock this could have been a potential problem.

    I would be interested to see the FULL results - this may throw a different light into the reasons as to why she died.

    As an aside, I have followed your threads for a long time and you are always one caring and informative person - your Silkie's are amazing to see!

    Please keep us informed as to the full results of the necropsy.

  7. galanie

    galanie Treat Dispenser No More

    Aug 20, 2010
    All birds can get fatty liver disease from eating too much grease or fat. Did any of the stuff you gave them have butter on it? If so that could be the source. Otherwise, no idea unless they are fat and you are unaware. Did they say excess fat tissue anywhere?

    PS - I don't mean did they get butter once, that won't hurt. But did they get it regularly.
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2012
  8. casportpony

    casportpony Enlightened

    Jun 24, 2012
    My Coop
    I know nothing about fatty liver disease, but I just wanted to thank you for posting the necropsy results.
  9. seminolewind

    seminolewind Flock Mistress

    Sep 6, 2007
    Corydon, Indiana
    Fatty liver disease is usually caused by obesity, and can improve with a diet. Was she actually fat?

    I'm glad that you came back and updated with necropsy results. It teaches so much for so many here.

    For treats, I give my chickens sweetfeed for horses. I get the one that's the most whole oats. It's much better for them since oats are great and sweetfeed has some nutrition and vitamins in it where scratch does not. It's much less fattening than corn.
  10. Suzie - Thank you for your kind comments. i, too, am a humble learner of how to care for our beloved feathered friends. And i guess i need to learn a lot more!

    galanie - when i give them eggs, they are usually mashed hard boiled, every 7-14 days or so. They used to get treats more often, but with all my other animals, not as often anymore. But sometimes on Sundays we make a big breakfast with eggs with cheese, sometimes cooked in butter. Leftovers go to the chickens, though usually not enough for everyone, so i rotate leftovers between our 8 chicken pens. Also, on occasion with their mashed hard boiled eggs, i top with a little bit of shredded cheese. i will be stopping that.

    Seminolewind - She didn't appear fat to me. Sable was a phoenix hen, sleek, no obvious protrusions of fat. i just looked back at the report and there is another section i forgot to copy and post. i will do that here. But it states she was "extremely obese". i have to go look on my older computer to find pictures because you would not look at this bird and say she was obese. But, they are the experts and i am clearly doing something very wrong. i will look into the sweet feed. i don't give them a lot of scratch, just a handful in the morning with flax seed and sunflower chips in it. But if that is the problem i am happy to switch to something else. They just seem to like a little something in the morning.

    Anyhow, here is the other paragraph i forgot to include. Plus, there will be additional results from the cultures in a few days.

    "A single chicken is submitted. The bird is in good nutritional and post-mortem condition. The abdomen appears somewhat distended externally. The bird is extremely obese with large fat depots in subcutaneous and thoraco-abdominal regions. The liver is a pale tan-pink to tan-brown in color with a very soft texture and there is a large fracture with an accompanying large hematoma emanating from the right liver lobe. There are essentially no additional significant gross findings noted. The bird is reproductively active with several large ova in the ova cluster and a formed shelled egg in the distal oviduct. The lungs, heart, kidneys, brain, select muscles and joints, as well as the nasal mucosa are grossly unremarkable. "

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