Possible egg bound hen, please help


In the Brooder
10 Years
Jul 10, 2009
My 2yr old LF Sav. Fav. hen has been sitting in the nest box for the last few days. I have another broody hen and so thought that she too was broody but when I went to check for eggs today, she was laying almost on her side and breathing heavy. She is usually a feisty girl and will bite when you try to reach under her while she is in the nest box (which she did just yesterday). I also noticed the other hens picking on her when she was out in the run yesterday, which NEVER happens. She is my "alpha" hen and even crows like a roo. If there is any pecking going on, it is usually by her.
So, I pulled her out of the box and set her on the dirt but she just laid on her side with her head up breathing heavy. She is also holding her tail down like she is sick or painful. I checked her vent and just below it, towards her underbelly is very swollen but I can't feel anything hard. Her rear was covered in very mucous like poo and she had what seemed to be yolk and white on her face and beak (don't know if this is related... I found an empty egg shell in the run yesterday and she might have been in on that :eek:/).
I was reading up on some older posts and they said to give her a warm bath and lube her vent with vasaline which I have done. I soaked her for about 20 minutes in the sink and she didn't try to push at all. She laid her head on the rim of the sink with her eyes closed and continued to breath heavy. It did seam to make her feel a little more comfortable than just laying on her side in the shavings. After the bath, her eyes were open wide like normal and not squinted in pain like before. I lubed up her vent with vasaline after drying her off and then wrapped her in a towel and laid her down to rest in a box in the kitchen.
Any info is appreciated. I've never had an egg bound hen and am worried that if she is, that I am too late. If she is no better by the morning, I will very likely take her to be euthanized if she even makes it through the nnight. I can't stand to see her in pain :'(


8 Years
Sep 2, 2011
New Hampshire
Sorry about the loss of your hen


8 Years
Mar 19, 2011
I am so sorry for you. I have been going through that with one of my girls. I got antibiotics into her right away and did the soaking. As I saw there was yoke in the coop with no egg. She seems better but I don't see eggs yet, which worries me as she may be having issues again. If you have this problem again make sure you have the antibiotic on hand, it made a world of difference for us.


8 Years
May 18, 2011
Eastern NC
If this happens again, after putting the vaseline around her vent put on a rubber glove and and stick your fingers in her vent to feel for an egg. Sometimes you can ease the egg out this way.

So sorry for your loss. It's tough to watch. Good Luck

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