Old Hen - Can't Walk


In the Brooder
11 Years
Mar 12, 2008

Back when Ida had to be put to sleep due to illness, our neighbor "loaned" us his granny barred rock to keep Gladys company. She's been with us through the summer months and has adjusted quite well. She goes to bed really early because she can barely see in the daylight. Up until a couple days ago she was moving around well, albeit slowly, compared to the 7 pullets we now have.

Two days ago we noticed her perched on the base of the run - just sitting there - all day long. When we went into the run she attempted to move away but seemed "drunk" in her walk. She took a few steps and then sat down. When we put food/water down on the ground so she could reach it while sitting, she drank and ate.

I put her in the henhouse last night and she was still on the roost this afternoon when we got home from work. She didn't get down the entire day. She drank and ate a bit when we placed her on the floor of the coop. Her breathing is not labored, from what I can tell. She will let me pick her up, but doesn't like it. She just appears weak overall.

I am not sure if she's just older than dirt and is ready to move on to chicken heaven or what. The other hens seem well and unaffected. Granny Hen does seem to be moulting a bit...would this process zap her energy this much? Or do you guys think I should just put her down? My neighbor offered to take her back and "take care of her" but I wasn't ready to put her back over there with the 20 hens/roosters to fend for herself.

Help me...what should I do? What does Granny deserve?
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Do they make chicken nursing homes? I think she's just an old gal who's running out of steam...sad

Granny is doing better. She is walking around the yard on her own and is able to get into the henhouse and up on the roost on her own. I am thinking that moulting had zapped her energy and she just was lethargic while growing new feathers. I am so relieved and she seems to be back to her old (pardon the pun!) self again.
Glad she is doing better. With the "drunk walk" I would have been suspicious of food or water contamination, or perhaps eating a toxic plant. Even a small amount of food/water toxin could be handled by younger birds and really get to an older one.
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Nope...she's really old....never have had an egg from her in over 6 months.
I have an old hen (still lays, pretty good actualy) but she gets egg bound about once every 1-2 month !!! Iv'e given up on helped her its just to often, that why I was asking... your hen sounds like her when she is egg bound !!!! Well, glad to hear she is getting better !!
Yea. She seems to have perked up. She's moulting and I think she's just worn out from growing new feathers. She's got a lot growing on the back of her neck and she stands up and stretches her neck up tall to loosen up those new feathers.

She is eating and drinking well and is keeping up and holding her own with bossy Gladys and the six pullets. I am glad she's hanging in there. I enjoy going out and chatting with her!

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