Not sure what is going on?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by golfergirl07, Jan 25, 2017.

  1. golfergirl07

    golfergirl07 Just Hatched

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    I have two young hens, Millee and Missee. Millee is very dominant, and Missee is rather meek and quiet. A few weeks ago - maybe 3? - they both had some frostbite on the tops of their combs. They seemed to have been doing fine. Then, earlier this week, I fed them and noticed that Millee was hogging the food bowl and Missee went to bed with very little food in her beak. It's been cold here, with about a foot of snow as of yesterday, and they don't like the snow. They've stayed in my garage. Missee hasn't eaten much since Monday, but is alert, turns her head to noises, pecked at the food bag, and walked around some. She has eaten some of a hard-boiled egg - mainly the yolk, some chick starter food, and a little bit of yogurt. I'm really worried about her because she's going to bed with almost nothing in her crop. I've started feeding her 2-3 times a day outside of their coop, but she only eats a little bit. Does anyone have any advice? I've thought about separating the two of them, but then they still cuddle with each other at night, so I don't want to take that away.

    Any ideas would be greatly appreciated!!!!
     
  2. cavemanrich

    cavemanrich Overrun With Chickens

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    Keep giving her the TLC [​IMG] as you are doing. Do not separate them . Maybe things will shake out soon.
    WISHING YOU BEST.. [​IMG]
     
  3. golfergirl07

    golfergirl07 Just Hatched

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    Thank you! I will.
     
  4. azygous

    azygous Chicken Obsessed

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    The timid one is being bullied away from food by the dominant hen. This starts a vicious cycle where the bullied hen becomes undernourished and gradually weakens, losing her strength to fight for enough to eat.

    You have been doing the right thing by seeing to it Missee gets extra food. But some chickens lose their will to eat unless they are with their mates. Yes, I know, this is the problem. Try using two separate feeders about three to six feet apart. Feed at exactly the same time so Millee is occupied with her own food and won't be paying attention to what Missee is doing.

    If Millee is going to be a real jerk and leave her dish to chase Missee away from hers, then you will need to rig up a partition between the two feeders somehow so Millee can't reach Missee's dish, but Missee still feels connected to Millee at feeding time and will therefore feel like eating.

    Sometimes you have to get creative in order to outsmart chickens. They can really keep you on your toes.
     
  5. golfergirl07

    golfergirl07 Just Hatched

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    You aren't kidding about how they can keep a person on their toes!!! I've been trying to feed her whatever she will eat. I was at Walmart last night and read that you can feed chickens parakeet food as a treat. My dad separated them into to side-by-side dog crates. She's eaten more at this point in the day than she has any other day this week, so I mixed some chick starter food into it.

    I also witnessed Missee picking at her chest feathers last night and noticed that she picked at her wing feathers as well. I'm assuming that it's from a protein or calcium deficiency? She's still very alert, hasn't sneezed to my knowledge in several days, and her nostrils are clear. Missee's skin is also clear of mites/lice as far as I can see. I did dust them both last weekend, though.
     
  6. cavemanrich

    cavemanrich Overrun With Chickens

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    If you want to increase their protein intake temporarily, Give them some tuna, or canned cat food. Just look at at my avatar.
     
  7. golfergirl07

    golfergirl07 Just Hatched

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    Oh! I hadn't thought of that! I bet they'll love that. Do I need to be careful of what kinds of wet cat food or tuna to feed them? Missee ate the best yesterday than she has all week, but today - Saturday - she took a step back or two and didn't eat much. She is still acting pretty normal, though.
     
  8. cavemanrich

    cavemanrich Overrun With Chickens

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    Type of cat food would not make any difference. My chickens also do invade the cats dry food stash when they can get to it. I feed my cats Meow .. They ask for it by name.[​IMG] You may need to crush it some if your chickens are still small. My adult LF have no issues wolfing those morsel pieces whole with no problem. Other option is to moisten dry food with water. Cat food and dog food has a higher protein content than compared to Layer feed @ 16%
     
  9. azygous

    azygous Chicken Obsessed

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    As far as feeding tuna or cat food, make sure it's only for the short term. Feeding large amounts of animal protein over a long period can result in poultry gout and it's hard on the liver and kidneys.

    I'm thinking Missee is a bully by temperament. There may not be a dietary issue here, although it won't hurt to feed the extra protein to see if it helps matters.

    If Missee continues to be a jerk, I suggest you get some pinless peepers and install them on her. It will cut down her forward vision so she is less likely to shave feathers of her little companion.

    In fact, PM me your name and mailing address and I'll drop a pair in the mail to you this next week when I go to town. All you'll need is to find a pair of snap ring pliers which work the opposite of regular pliers to install them on her nares.
     

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