Pale comb, pale feet... still...

sloanbychoice

Songster
Dec 29, 2019
131
438
126
Wichita, Kansas
White leghorn, Blanca, is coming up on 2yrs old. Got her as a chick spring 2018. She decided her first molt would be this winter.
Several weeks ago, she looked horrible, massive feather loss all at once, run looked like an attack had happened, you know the drill... Anyway, it really took it out of her. She spent a lot of time to herself, acted painful upon touch, and SLOWLY got her feathers back.
It’s been a little while now, and her comb is still quite pale, as are her feet.
I’m just wondering, is this still from the molt? Does it sometimes take them quite a while to bounce back?
I’ve tried looking for the things I see on here... don’t see any signs of parasite that I can tell with my little tiny knowledge. She eats, drinks, acting fairly normal now. She just looks pitiful.

She is top of the order as far as I can tell.
No one messes with her, not even Boss.

Thanks for any knowledge you have!!
 

Abriana

Spicy Sugar Cookie
Apr 26, 2017
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Midgard
Chickens usually get a pale comb when they molt and egg laying decreases. Is she laying right now? Can you get some pictures of her (especially her comb and feet)? Before and after pictures would probably be best. Sometimes people give their chickens molt muffins or shakes which have protein and nutrients that help them during the molt. You could giving her some more protein. I am not sure about the pale feet.
 

sloanbychoice

Songster
Dec 29, 2019
131
438
126
Wichita, Kansas
6413B2C5-F994-4859-AD43-576EB8928891.jpeg

This one shows her now, in the foreground. By comparison, Albus in the background with her normal comb.


BE0DD64B-EF97-450B-A1C4-11FC6DCD3503.jpeg

This one was summer of 2018. Best pic I could find right off.

She has not laid since before her molt, maybe a month ago or more.
 

sloanbychoice

Songster
Dec 29, 2019
131
438
126
Wichita, Kansas
She does eat well, still loves her snacks, mealies and what not.
I do notice though.... sometimes in the early evening, I’m not sure if she’s getting cold... she’ll sort of bring her head closer in and sort of gaze off, being very still.
 

Abriana

Spicy Sugar Cookie
Apr 26, 2017
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I would say she is probably still on break. She might start up again within the next few weeks. I would give her some protein (dog food works well or if you like to make elaborate treats for your girls you can make her the molt smoothie or muffins). Does she have free choice calcium? I still am not sure about the pale feet, but I have had hen's leg colors change (from green to slate blue, it was weird!). Her legs might return to normal once she starts laying again.

Does her abdomen feel squishy or liquid filled? Is her crop full at night and empty in the morning? Does she forage with the other hens or stand off by herself? Does she feel thinner than normal? It is good that she seems to be eating well. Have you wormed your chickens lately? On second thought that could explain the pale feet. She doesn't have an external parasites like lice or mites?
 

sloanbychoice

Songster
Dec 29, 2019
131
438
126
Wichita, Kansas
I know nothing about crops yet. I’ve just started my research on checking them and their care.
I didn’t see any sign of parasites. Skin, feathers, and poop look fine.
She stays with the girls a lot. But then sometimes, she just goes off by herself. Just stands there. Really seems to be early evening when the temps drop. So I feel like she’s just getting cold. Maybe because of still not having all feathers in, or because of some underlying issue... I wondered about giving her some nutrient that could be lacking.
They’ve all had plenty of extra protein lately, as well as scratch, because I was worried about our Kansas extreme changes in temp lately.
She did get thinner, rather quickly, right when she started her molt. From what I read about molts, I’d say it was as a hard molt...? Idk, I just know it zapped her!

Thanks for your help!!!
 

Abriana

Spicy Sugar Cookie
Apr 26, 2017
4,710
49,198
1,127
Midgard
I know nothing about crops yet. I’ve just started my research on checking them and their care.
I didn’t see any sign of parasites. Skin, feathers, and poop look fine.
She stays with the girls a lot. But then sometimes, she just goes off by herself. Just stands there. Really seems to be early evening when the temps drop. So I feel like she’s just getting cold. Maybe because of still not having all feathers in, or because of some underlying issue... I wondered about giving her some nutrient that could be lacking.
They’ve all had plenty of extra protein lately, as well as scratch, because I was worried about our Kansas extreme changes in temp lately.
She did get thinner, rather quickly, right when she started her molt. From what I read about molts, I’d say it was as a hard molt...? Idk, I just know it zapped her!

Thanks for your help!!!
Okay, I would check hers evening and morning. This will tell you if she is getting enough to eat and if it is passing. It is good that her poop and feathers seem to be okay. If you have not wormed them though, I would, just to be safe. You can give it a few more days and see if her standing around in the evening is just cold, it's possible that it could be. And do you have free choice calcium? Mostly the hens can get enough from the layer feed but to avoid possible reproductive problems the free choice calcium is a must.

Since the molt just ended, I would just make sure she is eating enough and try to help her gain the weight back, and hopefully she starts laying soon!

No problem! Always happy to help :) I'm going to tag @Eggcessive , a second opinion is always a good idea.
 
Last edited:

sloanbychoice

Songster
Dec 29, 2019
131
438
126
Wichita, Kansas
Thanks!! I’ve heard from @Eggcessive before too. Very helpful. They have layer feed, and I haven’t done free choice calcium yet. I’ll get on it. I need to anyway, since I’m probably going to switch to All Flock because of the boy.

Thanks again!!
 

Eggcessive

Enabler
Premium member
8 Years
Apr 3, 2011
49,388
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southern Ohio
I agree that it may just be the molt and wintertime making her so pale. Just check again for lice or mites, and that might be done at night with a flashlight since some lice come on them at night only. I would also worm with either Valbazen 1/2 ml once and again in 10 days, or with SafGuard Liquid Goat Wormer 1/4 per each piund of weight, once and again in 10 days. Some chick vitamins such as Poultry NutriDrench 2 ml daily for a few days might give her a boost.
 

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