Possible stroke?


8 Years
Jun 27, 2011
Yesterday I found my 3 year old hybrid in the shed sitting on her own, she was fine the day before. I picked her up and her legs stayed stuff underneath her with her toes curled, I gently pulled her legs down into standing position but she pulled them back in. She will drink when I put her beak in the water but won't eat or drink independently. I have covered her in DE dust as she is on the coop floor. The other hens are beginning to peck her. Apart from her legs, her eyes and comb seem bright and she will try to move by dragging herself with her beak and wiggling her wings but struggles. Does anyone know what's happened? It does not seem likely to be mareks as her age and I have dealt with mareks before. Do I give her a few days or just let nature take its course?
Any help is appreciated
It's possible she had a stroke or other illness that hit her hard and fast. She could have broken her back somehow, she could have a tumor growing on her spine. Anything is possible and you might never know what happened.

If the other hens are picking on her put her in a large box or cage in the house or other area but in her condition I think she would like the company.

If she can only pull herself forward with her beak I would think it would be best to put her down if no improvement by tomorrow. I see that you original post was 18 hours ago. Tomorrow afternoon would be 28 hours or so and if there is no change you'll have to make a decision.

If she is not able to drink and eat by herself she'll slowly starve to death and that's not humane. If she is laying in her own poop all day and night she'll develop abscesses on her skin.

Let us know if she is any better tomorrow.

I'm very sorry this happened. A lot of us have been through similar circumstances and I know that doesn't make it better but I hope it helps. We all love our flocks.
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I wouldn't give up quite yet. Depending on your investments (emotional as well as financial) you could tube feed, if she isn't eating. I have never done this but there are lots of people on here with great ideas. Sometimes they need time. I would also seperate. She may seem upset to be seperated but it is best for her. Even your sweetest bird could pick on her. It is in their instincts.

Hope this helps
Thankyou for both of your help, she is in a pet carrier but in the chicken shed so she can see and hear the others but they cant get to her food and water. She still isnt eating but she is drinking so is there anything i can feed her that is liquid like so she gets something inside her?

She is no better today, but bright still, however and i am worried she will starve unless i get something in her fast. She has had sugar water. I usually do everything i can for my chickens and i take them to the vets to be put down if i have to.. i dont mind the cost. Will anti-biotics help in a situation like this?
I don't think antibiotics will help. It sounds neurological. I respect the last post but I'm against tube feeding. It's stressful to the chicken and a lot of times the food can get into the lungs and is terribly painful and will result in a slow death.

If you have a vet you might want to give him/her a call and get some advice.
Yes i dont think i will try tube feeding as i would feel awful if i caused more suffering. She is slowly going downhill but has eaten and drank some water and mashed up food. We cant access a vet until monday really as will cost much more at a weekend so will have to let nature do its thing i think.
Thankyou for all for your help
I'm keeping my fingers crossed for your girl!

When my girls are sick and not eating I buy some wet cat food (the pate type, not the jelly), mix it with some water and syringe feed. I just squirt a little in their mouth at a time and let them swallow it themselves, some love the taste so much they will help themselves x
It is really quite simple. Either you pay the money to get a vet now. Or you go and put it down right now. It is not right to make an animal suffer like this because you want to save money or pretend a chicken is a human friend.
I know you wont like this, but this is the responsibility that comes with owning chickens. More and more people let their chickens go through hell. It is not right.

Your chicken had a good long life. Let it end without the pain and humiliation. If you buy hybrid hens. Chances are that just as many hybrid rooster ended their life a few hours old. Nobody wants them. This is more relevant.

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