pullet sitting hunched and fluffed up

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by sharol, Jan 9, 2011.

  1. sharol

    sharol Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 13, 2010
    Admire, KS
    1) What type of bird , age and weight.--Partridge Rock, 25 weeks no idea on weight, but not thin.
    2) What is the behavior, exactly. she sits fluffed out when outside and stands on the roost bar (2x4 wide side up) next to her chickie friend all fluffed up and sort of hunched like she has a stomach ache.
    3) How long has the bird been exhibiting symptoms? -- just noticed it this afternoon when they were ranging in the yard. She wasn't part of her usual group. She is at the bottom of the pecking order and hangs with another mid-ranked chicken most of the time. Today she was off by herself.
    4) Are other birds exhibiting the same symptoms? -- not at this time
    5) Is there any bleeding, injury, broken bones or other sign of trauma. -- no
    6) What happened, if anything that you know of, that may have caused the situation. -- my girls are just starting to lay, and I've been finding softshelled and shellless eggs under the roost in the mornings on some days. I'm not sure whether she has ever laid a shelled egg, and I'm not sure the shellless ones are hers. I have 5 laying pullets and 2 questionable ones.
    7) What has the bird been eating and drinking, if at all. -- seems to be drinking normally, though slow to go to the waterer this afternoon when I put fresh water in their waterer (with ACV - always) -- she wasn't interested in the treats (ricotta cheese and chopped tomatoes) this afternoon, but she sometimes doesn't rush right into the treats because of her low rank. They aren't mean to her, but she does get pushed around and roosts at the end of the roost.
    8) How does the poop look? Normal? Bloody? Runny? etc. -- not sure yet
    9) What has been the treatment you have administered so far? -- just observing, I noticed this about 5 this evening and then just checked on her in the coop to see if she had gotten up to the roost (about 4' high)
    10 ) What is your intent as far as treatment? For example, do you want to treat completely yourself, or do you need help in stabilizing the bird til you can get to a vet? -- unsure at this point
    11) If you have a picture of the wound or condition, please post it. It may help. -- no picture at this time
    12) Describe the housing/bedding in use -- metal building 6x8, not insulated, but not drafty. Heat lamp comes on at 20 degrees and off at 35 or so. Pine shavings, deep litter, no odor. I pick up the worst under the roost each morning and add a little new litter every few days.

    I'm so new at this that I don't know whether to be worried. I am concerned about laying problems, and if she is still out of sorts tomorrow, I'll bring her into a mudroom area that is cooler than the house (maybe 60 degrees) and put her in the large dog carrier to get a better look at her poop.

    I've read way too many posts about egg binding and internal laying, so I'm paranoid, but the symptoms sound like egg bound to me. If I get agreement on that, I may try the warm water soak and a little lubrication. Her vent looks ok, not prolapsed or distended. Pink and moist. Crop was full at bedtime, I'll check it again in the morning to be sure it is emptying. I just wish I knew if she had laid an egg yet or if the soft-shelled/no shelled ones were hers or the Wellie's.
     
  2. RhodeIslandRedFan

    RhodeIslandRedFan Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Dec 10, 2009
    Central PA
    Hello, sharol. It sounds like you are doing the right thing by separating and observing her. You will get a better idea of how much she is eating and drinking, whether her poop is normal, and whether she is the layer of those soft-shelled/shell less eggs. I don't have a lot of experience with chickens so unfortunately have no advice for you. I have had times when one of my hens looked a little off for a day or two, then returned to normal and was fine. I hope someone with more chicken experience comes along soon for you. Good luck to you and your hen [​IMG]
     
  3. sharol

    sharol Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 13, 2010
    Admire, KS
    Thanks RIR Fan. I'll not sleep well tonight. I would have brought her in, but they were all settled, and getting her off the roost would have upset all of them. Add to that that she is my most standoffish pullet, and it just seemed like a bad idea to try to extract her. Maybe she will be feeling better. I hope.
     
  4. sharol

    sharol Chillin' With My Peeps

    3,007
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    Jun 13, 2010
    Admire, KS
    Update: This morning there was a broken, soft shelled (though not as soft as the others) egg on their step out of the coop (not under a roost). I think I'll go dig it out of the snow where I dumped it and see if it is all there. Misty was still a bit hunched, but seems a little better.

    Is there anything I can do to boost her egg shell production? They have access to oyster shell, eat layer pellets (wet as a treat -- won't touch them dry), and get cottage cheese a couple of times a week as a treat.
     

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