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Newbie here....please help!

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by cgreese, Jul 11, 2016.

  1. cgreese

    cgreese Out Of The Brooder

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    I have 17 8 week old pullets. I live in N. Florida where the temperature has been close to 100, or more, with a heat index of 104-108. I think one of my pullets is suffering from heat exhaustion, despite my efforts to keep them all as cool as possible in the horrid heat. I check on them several times a day to ensure they are all ok. Two days ago, I went out to check on them and one of the pullets was laying on her side, unable to walk. I immediately picked her up, brought her inside, rinsed her in cool water for several minutes, wrapped her in a towel and fed her water through a syringe. I have done this several times over the past couple of days, and I have also fed her Greek plain yogurt, scrambled egg and she has also eaten a little of her scratch. She will eat and drink a little on her own, but is unable to walk. She is also unable to push her poop out. I have cleaned her bottom several times, and had to physically squeeze the poop out of her. She fusses when I do this, but otherwise, the poop does not exit her vent completely. It is partially on the outside, and when I squeeze the base of her intestine more poop comes out.

    She is alert, but cannot move or push her poop out. Are these symptoms of heat exhaustion or possibly a heat stroke? I have checked her legs and feet for injuries and there are none. She does not have any problems breathing.

    Any help, thoughts and/or advice would be greatly appreciated! Thank you in advance!
     
  2. lindalouly

    lindalouly Grd Ctrl 2 Major Tom

    Bumping this up so maybe someone can answer your question and give you good solid advice. Good luck.
     
  3. Wishing4Wings

    Wishing4Wings Isn't it Amazing?

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    Hi. welcome to BYC. Sorry about your chicken. Two easy things are to change the plain water you are giving to an electrolyte solution. (I will look for a link after I post.) Second thing is no scratch in the heat. Corn jazzes up their metabolism and actually creates more body heat for them. There are better alternatives for treats.

    If you still have her inside, this will sound silly, you have to make sure she is not too cold. Wet feathers in air conditioning will bring her body temp down quickly, but since she has been stressed, being too cold will not help her.

    Some chickens handle cold and heat better than others, but when it gets too much for them, it can cause organ damage that may not be repairable. If she has poor heat tolerance, this may have happened, and she just needs time to heal.

    Not sure about the trouble pooping. The electrolytes might help with the contractions. What type of food does she have access to?


    Here is a link to electrolyte solution. post #1
     
    Last edited: Jul 11, 2016
  4. cgreese

    cgreese Out Of The Brooder

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    Thank you so much! She is in the house with me now and I will make sure she is not too cool in the air conditioning. Thanks for that tip!

    The food she has access to is Nutrena Chick Starter. This is in addition to the scrambled egg and plain yogurt I have given her. Is this starter ok for her and the other pullets in this heat, or should I switch to something else? They are all 8 weeks old.

    Thank you for the link. I will be mixing up a batch of this very shortly. Should I give this to the other pullets, as well, as a precautionary measure?

    FYI...the poop keeps oozing out. It seems to be normal consistency and color. I have to frequently squeeze it out so she isn't just laying in it. It's like she is digesting, but, like you said, she cannot contract the muscles needed to get it out. She cries a bit when I squeeze it out. :(

    Does this sound like a result of heat exhaustion?
     
  5. cgreese

    cgreese Out Of The Brooder

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    Thank you, lindalouly!
     
  6. lindalouly

    lindalouly Grd Ctrl 2 Major Tom


    You are welcome!! Wishing for wings is a whole lot more educated than me. Hopefully that helps a little!
     
  7. h2oratt

    h2oratt Overrun With Chickens

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    The poop thing is weird. I have never heard of that.
     
  8. lindalouly

    lindalouly Grd Ctrl 2 Major Tom

    Sometimes long grasses get bound in the digestive system and it has to be pulled out. Grit usually helps. Is it long matted poop?
     
  9. lindalouly

    lindalouly Grd Ctrl 2 Major Tom

    If it is bound just give her electrolytes until it all gets cleared up.
     
    Last edited: Jul 11, 2016
  10. Wishing4Wings

    Wishing4Wings Isn't it Amazing?

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    Sonoma County, CA
    Is the chick starter medicated? (have amprolium in it). If it is medicated, you might try switching to a chick starter that is non medicated. I have heard people say that the medicated stuff can cause the runs. It never has for my chicks, but just an idea to try. Also, maybe stop the yogurt and see if that helps. Too much of anything is not good. The chick starter should be the best thing for now until her system gets back to normal. It is well balanced and easy for her to digest. Whole grains, greens, scratch should be avoided until she gets back on track.

    Yes, electrolytes would be good for the other chicks. I would offer them plain water too so they have a choice. Chickens are surprisingly good at regulating what they need.

    As for the poo, I don't think normal consistency would ooze. Normal should be semi-solid. Sometimes in the heat they will drink too much and cause themselves diarrhea, but it should still be intentional pooping on their part, and not dribbling out. That is odd. I am hoping the electrolytes will help regulate this.

    You are not seeing any redness in the poo, are you? Anything that looks like blood? And when you check on the rest of them, be very observant, really look them over good. Anyone else with poopy butt? Anyone else looking different or off in any way? Any poo in the pen that looks similar to the one in the house? I am trying to rule out some other type of sickness (specifically coccidiosis) that may be causing your pullet trouble, other than the heat.
     

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