No shell, no membrane. Hen is hunched and inactive.

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by little white, Jul 10, 2011.

  1. little white

    little white Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 20, 2008
    Daisy is a 1-year-old RIR. Very healthy and normal until a month ago when she started laying only whites and yolks in the nestbox, no membrane or shell. Sometimes she seemed quiet and uncomfortable as well. But she'd always feel better later in the day. I began giving oyster shell to the girls in addition to their layer pellets, but that didn't help. So every morning for the past week, I've been feeding Daisy a tablespoon of cottage cheese with about a half of an eggshell crushed and mixed in. She devoured it, and began laying eggs with shells again. But this morning, I watched her expel a yolk and white while pooping. She stood quietly most of the day with her tail down and head tucked in. I'm afraid I'm losing her. Any advice, Please?
     
  2. TrystInn

    TrystInn Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 16, 2009
    Southern Arizona
    First off, stop feeding her dairy. Chickens are lactose intolerant, you're likely disrupting her digestion that way.

    Secondly, this sounds a lot like Egg Drop Syndrome (EDS76). Are you in the US? Do you have wild ducks or geese in your area?
     
  3. little white

    little white Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 20, 2008
    Woah. Thank you. I've never heard of this. We don't have ducks, geese or quail, but this does sound like Daisy's illness. Reading that it's not fatal, and might even go away in 10 weeks, is so reassuring.
     
  4. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude Premium Member

    She probably has egg peritonitis, an infection set up in there from egg yolk cooking inside her where it shouldn't be. Dairy didn't cause it, trust me. Penicillin injections may fix the infection or it may not, but that is what I always try, a full 1 cc in the breast meat for 3-4 days, then wait and see. You can also crush up a high potency Tums in a tablespoon of plain yogurt (has probiotics so not the same as other dairy products) as emergency calcium. Vets give a shot of calcium gluconate and that is a similar.

    These threads may be helpful to you. https://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=362422

    https://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=195347
     
  5. little white

    little white Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 20, 2008
    Daisy was fine the next day, and is doing well today. On further research, I realize it's not Egg Drop because we're in the US, and we don't have that virus here. I don't think it's peritonitis because there's no swelling, she's not walking funny... Today she's chasing bugs, running, bright and healthy. But in a day or two, we'll be having those same sad symptoms again. It's been going on for a month. ??
     
  6. teach1rusl

    teach1rusl Love My Chickens

    So sorry, but I had a sweet S. Fav. girl who went through the same thing...she'd perk up and seem fairly well for a weeks at a time, but then she'd be right back to dragging and expelling egg white goo (and sometimes yolk). I thought about putting her down a few times, but then she'd perk back up and start eating normally, and her activity level would pick up. She was on and off like this for almost 5 months...never laid an egg during that time [​IMG] Speckledhen suggested the same diagnosis, and it was correct. Based on what you've described, I'd guess your girl has the same thing. [​IMG]
     
  7. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude Premium Member

    There doesn't have to be swelling for it to be egg peritonitis/internal laying. I've had it present both ways, same results upon necropsy, solid masses of egg yolk/solid infection in the oviducts.
     
  8. little white

    little white Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 20, 2008
    Thank you, Teach1rus! and Speckledhen --- so... is it eventually fatal? I saw, Speckledhen, that you extracted fluid, and gave other treatments to save your girls, but in the end nothing really worked. Is this a problem that has arisen out of our breeding for rapid production? I lost my Hatsy at two years old for probably the same reason. She was a total production chicken, never took a break, and I'd say she laid herself to death. So totally sad. If this is the case, I'm going to have my heart broken again. No more RIR's for me.
     
  9. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude Premium Member

    I extracted fluid from Olivia and from Ivy, but many of mine never had that fluid buildup. They just got thinner and weaker in spite of eating and drinking normally. It was when we opened them up that the cause was confirmed.


    The production types are the worst for this. I've lost all my Wyandottes to it, my hatchery RIRs, hatchery BRs, one Buff Orpington and the last two remaining original hatchery hens haven't laid in ages. One is a RIR, who does have a fluidy belly. The Buff Orp has no fluid buildup, but I suspect that the yolks are going somewhere, probably backing up in the oviducts, though there is no sign of anything wrong other than she hasn't laid an egg in months. Of all the original ten, that Buff Orp is the only one who ever went broody, and she did it twice, hence taking two extended breaks from laying. I do think that breaks for hatching and raising young help prolong their lives by giving their bodies a rest from laying.
     

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