Older hen with rock hard lower abdomen

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Country4ever, Sep 28, 2013.

  1. Country4ever

    Country4ever Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 26, 2007
    I'm pretty familiar with a couple hen problems, but I'm not sure about this one. I have a 10 and 1/2 year old Black Australorp hen. She's a sweetheart. But about a year ago, I found maggots on her vent. I cleaned them out and gave her an antibiotic. She improved immediately. then, several months after that, her back side was red again with small soft lumps around it. I gave her an antibiotic again (Baytril). She improved.

    Now, she's acting normal except she's sort of walking like a little kid with a full diaper. I checked her backside this morning, and her entire lower abdomen is rock hard.......like there's masses in there. I believe she may have passed a funky egg a few days ago......like a smallish egg, but very leathery. I'm not totally sure it was her though. She hasn't laid eggs for about a year.

    I've heard in the past that when chickens get infections, they can be really hard like this.
    I don't really want to open her up a little until I'm positive its something like an abscess. Her lower abdomen doesn't feel like fluid at all......its just all really, really hard. She is eating normally......although she has always pooped small stuff. Maybe she has had a slow growing tumor?

    Since she is so old, I really don't want to put her through alot. If it is an infection.........would antibiotics reach it, if its so hard already?
    Thanks for your help.
     
  2. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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  3. Country4ever

    Country4ever Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 26, 2007
    Thanks Eggcessive! I liked those links.
    I got 17 hens in 2003. I only have 4 left. They're my girlfriends. [​IMG]
    Thanks again for your help.
     
  4. cafarmgirl

    cafarmgirl Overrun With Chickens

    So you still have FOUR 10 1/2 year old hens?!! Where did you get them? Mine are just hatchery birds and if they are around more then 4 or 5 years it surprises me.

    Sorry about the one that isn't doing well, unfortunately I think Eggcessive is exactly right.
     
  5. Country4ever

    Country4ever Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 26, 2007
    Hi cafarmgirl,

    I got them from Cackle Hatchery in Missouri in 2003. I ordered 15 hens and they sent me 17. They are in a very secure coop with a big run. I thought the run was totally secure, but a couple years ago, a coon got in and killed 2 of them. The others died of various things......falling off the roost, pendulous crop, ascites, internal laying, etc. We did make the run more secure after the coon got in by putting wire over the top too, instead of just netting.
    I guess you could say they are prisoners of love. haha I would love to let them free range, but we live in the woods and I'm afraid they wouldn't make it through the first day out.
    I did get about a dozen eggs at the beginning of the year from a couple of them.......but I think they are done now. I like to say they are in henopause. :)

    I have totally enjoyed taking care of them. I will miss them when they are all gone. Not sure I want another 10+ year commitment, but who knows. I might get lonely and get more. :)
     

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