Possible Infection or Impacted Crop


May 6, 2015
Labrador, Canada
I woke up yesterday morning to an unenergetic chicken who wouldn't leave her roost or the coop to go outside. She was in the same spot at lunch four hours later when I checked on her. I took her inside and placed her in a dog crate. She ate some feed, crushed eggshells and also drank some water. I thought that she may have been eggbound but couldn't feel an egg and as far as I know she didn't go to the box and try to lay as she didn't move from her roost. When I put her in the kennel last night and she was falling asleep, she remained standing but tucked her head down a little and her breathing was a little noisy - no "clicking", but just loud breathing. I'm not sure if this was just due to her resting her head down or not.

She is quite unenergetic again this morning. No signs of eating or drinking but she did have a large, normal poop. She was standing and awake when I went to see her. I took her out of the kennel and rubbed around her crop in case it was impacted and provided her with only water with apple cider vinegar and yogurt. She seemed interested in the yogurt but she didn't have any or drink any water. I'm not 100% sure what to look for, but I felt a very small hard mass below her neck, but is this her crop or am I feeling something else? I left her alone for an hour and checked on her again and she was lying down in her kennel. She shut her eyes and didn't seem overly concerned that I was there.

I'm really not sure if this could be some sort of respiratory infection or a crop impaction? I've had five chickens for a year and haven't noticed anything else in any of the chickens, and they are all normal this morning. Is there anything I should be looking for or anything else I can do?

NOTES: chickens were dusted with DE three days ago. They have constant access to fresh water, feed and crushed eggshells in the coop, and a run with access to fresh air and sand to dust bathe.
If you've been feeding them apple cider vinegar on a regular basis it will cause digestive problems. If you do not regularly deworm your birds with Benzamidazole classes of anthelmintics, digestive difficulty, weakness, and secondary infections are a result. DE used in-house where it is airborne, or on birds can get in the air sacs where it accumulates and is never expelled. Providing grit and crushed oyster shell is important and not letting feeders run empty when they tend to go out ranging where fibrous grasses will be their choice to gorge on when hungry.

Remove the bird to a comfortable location with shelter. Withhold feed for 12-24 hours and only give vitamin-electrolyte-Probios powder in drinker. If bird has small hard impacted crop, you will need to tube feed the water solution to your bird. The next morning, check the crop, an if it has lessened in size ( better if empty) , give Valbazen suspension soaked on a small square of bread (.5cc for 4-5 lb birds/ .25 cc for birds 3 lbs and under). For feeding that day only a few pieces of buttermilk soaked bread/or moistened small amount of feed periodically throughout the day. Deworm your bird again 10 days after the first deworming.
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It's hard to see, but she has small, hard mass or lump on her neck, as well one near or in her crop. She seems to like when I massage the mass on her neck but does not like me touching the mass near or in her crop. Could be impacted crop or something worse. She ate a little yogurt and diced strawberry and I gave her oil and massaged her crop.
Update: She was lying down in the same spot as last night when I went to see her this morning, no food or water touched and no manure in the crate. She ate a little egg with olive oil, yogurt, and I got some warm water in her mouth, but now there are two small firm masses on or near her crop. She didn't seem interested in the egg unless I put it in my hand and brought it near her beak. I don't think it's an impacted crop but I'm not sure. It isn't squishy and can't feel anything moving around, just two large masses in or near her crop, and another mass near her neck as shown.

It's also very uncomfortable for her when I feel the lumps around her crop. She's interested in the yogurt now on her own, but every now and then she stops to take in a little breath. Couldn't see anything down her throat.

Feels like another mass on her back leg muscle. Sounding like tumors throughout her body. Possibly Marek's disease?
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