Running out of ideas on a rhode island red that's not thriving

otoro

Chirping
Nov 26, 2018
54
26
71
New England
We have a flock of 4. 3 Reds and 1 Aracana. All are 9 months old. One of our hens is named Lara (because she is/was very brave even as a small chick). As we moved into winter this year she has stopped laying.

She got sick about a month ago, and symptoms matched up with coccidosis, we treated with amprolium and she got significantly better. Crop feels a little stiff, comparatively but no foul smell. (We put ACV in their water on every fill). Comb is normal color, her eyes seemed to have gotten just a tad bit darker in color, but they are 6mo old or so, so perhaps still changing? No worms in her poo. Poo looks right color and consistency.

Sorry this is a bit disorganized.

Her issue is that she seems like she's becoming more of a 'runt.' She's by far the smallest chicken, and seems to have some problems with her feathers coming in all the way during the winter moult. Especially on the bottom of her belly, around her vent, and various other areas. Looks like feathers are trying to grow but not fully developing. She is often by herself, and struggles to put on weight. She shivers often, and I caved and put a small pad heater in the coop to help keep her warm during the colder winter nights.

She has completely stopped laying, and is more lethargic than usual, but not as bad as when we treated for coccidosis. She is still eating, but not doesn't eat a lot. She is lowest on the pecking order, but is also quite a sweet little chicken. She is our most intelligent bird, and the one I have the best relationship with.

I'm hoping it's not failure to thrive, one of those less common cases where the chicken makes it to adulthoot, but struggles. Looking for any advice and suggestions on what I can try, I'm really running out of ideas on what could be going wrong.
 

ashlierami

Songster
Feb 9, 2017
871
1,552
232
Alabama
We have a flock of 4. 3 Reds and 1 Aracana. All are 9 months old. One of our hens is named Lara (because she is/was very brave even as a small chick). As we moved into winter this year she has stopped laying.

She got sick about a month ago, and symptoms matched up with coccidosis, we treated with amprolium and she got significantly better. Crop feels a little stiff, comparatively but no foul smell. (We put ACV in their water on every fill). Comb is normal color, her eyes seemed to have gotten just a tad bit darker in color, but they are 6mo old or so, so perhaps still changing? No worms in her poo. Poo looks right color and consistency.

Sorry this is a bit disorganized.

Her issue is that she seems like she's becoming more of a 'runt.' She's by far the smallest chicken, and seems to have some problems with her feathers coming in all the way during the winter moult. Especially on the bottom of her belly, around her vent, and various other areas. Looks like feathers are trying to grow but not fully developing. She is often by herself, and struggles to put on weight. She shivers often, and I caved and put a small pad heater in the coop to help keep her warm during the colder winter nights.

She has completely stopped laying, and is more lethargic than usual, but not as bad as when we treated for coccidosis. She is still eating, but not doesn't eat a lot. She is lowest on the pecking order, but is also quite a sweet little chicken. She is our most intelligent bird, and the one I have the best relationship with.

I'm hoping it's not failure to thrive, one of those less common cases where the chicken makes it to adulthoot, but struggles. Looking for any advice and suggestions on what I can try, I'm really running out of ideas on what could be going wrong.
What protein content is her feed? What does she eat? I feed mine extra protein during a molt. Boiled eggs, mealworms, etc. I also found mine tho thrive better when I started adding a supplement to their feed called kickin chicken. It's packed with Omega and healthy fats for eggs. Do you have calcium available for her? I had a silkie that was going thru a rough molt it took forever to get her feathers in. She to was often cold and shivering. I started using the Omega supplement and her feathers came in faster and she put on some weight. It's alittle pricey but it's worth it for me. I say it's pricey because the bottle isn't very big but the way I mix my feed up it makes a 30 to 40 pound barrel of feed for my birds. I have 15 so this doesn't last to long especially since there isn't much grass right now.
 

otoro

Chirping
Nov 26, 2018
54
26
71
New England
Our typical feed for them is Dumor 16% Layer mix. We mix in a small amount of grit. They also get mealworm snacks every day, and we give them hanging cabbage too (tetherball style), they go through 2 heads of cabbage per week.

it sounds like i should pickup some of the chick starter and maybe mix that in, and feed it exclusively to Lara

2422907
 

ChickNanny13

Crossing the Road
8 Years
Jun 23, 2013
9,080
12,878
977
The Big Island/Hawaii
I used Dumor couple years ago, stopped after noticing my chickens having stinky, dark, soft poop. Have since switched to Flock Raiser (Oyster Shells in a separate dish) which I ferment & LOVE the results. Switched after reading about feeding layers higher protein than what's in the Layer.

2x oldhenlikesdogs
 

otoro

Chirping
Nov 26, 2018
54
26
71
New England
I used Dumor couple years ago, stopped after noticing my chickens having stinky, dark, soft poop. Have since switched to Flock Raiser (Oyster Shells in a separate dish) which I ferment & LOVE the results. Switched after reading about feeding layers higher protein than what's in the Layer.
2x oldhenlikesdogs

hey have you done a write up on this at all? i'd be interested in learning more about that feed and ferment process.
 

ChickNanny13

Crossing the Road
8 Years
Jun 23, 2013
9,080
12,878
977
The Big Island/Hawaii
I've even read about others having the same issue with Dumor = stinky dark soft poop. Read about fermenting right here on BYC, learned ALOT from this site & it's members. Ok, took me a bit but found this in my notes, one of these days I will organize my stuff so I can find things easier ... My daughter says I'm "Electronically Challenged" :lau

https://tikktok.wordpress.com/2014/04/13/fermented-feed-faq/
 

micstrachan

Enabler
Premium Feather Member
5 Years
Apr 10, 2016
10,768
53,608
1,147
Santa Cruz Mountains, California
I think you should check her crop function. Check that it is full before bed and empty in the morning before she has access to eat or drink anything. Also, are you sure she is getting enough to eat being lowest in the pecking order? I had a couple who were getting bullied away from the feed and weren't getting enough to eat, so I added more feeders. I have several little cup feeders that hang from the wire.
 

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