possibly egg bound, swollen and waddling 5 year old hen( resolved by culling )


7 Years
May 29, 2012
Gainesville, Florida
hey chicken people. i'm new to chickens, and we have a small flock of teenagers who haven't started laying yet, but my family has a flock of easter-eggers that are about 5 years old. Over the memorial weekend we visited them and we noticed one of the hens was waddling very low to the ground and her abdomen is extremely swollen and discolored. She is also doing the tail pumping and laying around alot. She is eating. She has pooped but not as much as i I would think she should.
She seems to be showing the symptoms of eggbound, so I've brought her home to my place since I had a few days off, and I've given her a hot soaking bath for 30-40 min twice, when that didn't produce a change I manually checked her and didn't feel anything hard, only how swollen she is. I've got her in isolation in our shed with a heat lamp.
Today, I was thinking about holding her over a steamy pot of water, but really after that, I'm at a loss. She doesn't seem to be straight up dying at this point, but this doesn't appear to be something she is just going to improve on her own.
Do feed stores carry chicken antibiotics? Is there more that we can do? Do you think this is eggbinding? I've also read that it could just be an infection of the egg tract.
Please share anything you feel could help the situation. We want her to be better but of course we don't want to make her suffer.
Chicken love.
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It sounds like EYP or internal laying. There is nothing you can do for her but give her a quick death. You can prolong the inevitable by putting her on some heavy duty antibiotics (from a vet) and start abdominal drainings, but the end result is that this is a terminal condition. Her days are numbered, and it is not a quick or easy way to go.

I just euthanized one of mine that had the same problem. I have been watching her fade and fail for the past few weeks and decided that there was nothing more to be done. It was a quick end, and she isn't suffering anymore. I still felt awful about the whole thing. I hate putting my birds down, especially the friendliest of the bunch.

Good luck. And I am sorry.
Agreed. With egg binding, she wouldn't be swollen like that. It would mean one egg was stuck in the oviduct. Sounds like egg yolk peritionitis and internal laying. Her abdomen is most likely full of infection, fluid and cooked egg yolks. At 5 years old, it could also be ovarian cancer, which would also accumulate fluids in the body.

These threads may be helpful to you.



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Hey, thank you both for the responses. With all that we learned and our own gut instinct, we chose to end her suffering. My boyfriend helped her along with a swift swing of the ax, and I'm grateful we have someone on our team that can do that if needed. She was a sweet girl, and I'm glad she doesn't feel badly anymore. Thanks again and look forward to an introduction soon.
~ Miranda aka Cool Ranch Life

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