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Severe feces and dirt build up- how to treat/prevent

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Jobot, Nov 19, 2014.

  1. Jobot

    Jobot Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 8, 2014
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    Hey guys!
    So I have six girls, five of which probably have poo stuck in their feathers. I got these girls from someone who was not as caring as I am about them, so I can only imagine they have had their feathers full of poo and debris for a very long time. I bathed one girl yesterday, and it was like cement in her feathers! I couldn't get all of it out, but I got most if it out and she is much more comfortable.
    Anyway, I've been looking into why it's happening, my birds don't appear to have diarrhea, and I don't think it's vent gleet because none of the poo on their bottoms is ever moist and their vents don't look super irritated, and also because the coop I was given is extremely badly designed, so the birds essentially roost and nest in their own poo. I'm still going to bathe and examine the remaining four, but I think if I put some dowels in the coop for them to roost on I will have much cleaner butts. Unless you guys have any other thoughts? And also, do you have any suggestions on how to cut the cement like substance made on their bottoms after so much poo build up? I just want these girls to be healthy and happy again.
     
  2. Stiggy

    Stiggy Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I give mine a butt buzz cut ( trim their back ends) or pluck out the feathers entirely around the vent if it gets really bad, some chickens with large ammounts of fluffy butt feathers are more prone and trimming them up can help. Have you got a pick of the house? it might be helpful to see what the problem is and possibly how it could be fixed.

    I would also worm them if you haven't done so already as this can cause poopy butt and many other problems.
     
  3. Blooie

    Blooie Team Spina Bifida Premium Member

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    Feb 25, 2014
    Northwestern Wyoming
    My Coop
    Good for you! It takes a special kind of person to clean up someone else's mess. I think you are on the right track, but I would nix the dowel for roosting idea. Chickens much prefer to sit when they roost rather than force their toes around a small object and try to remain balanced through the night.......

    I'd put a 2x4 in there, wide flat side up, so they can sit comfortably on their feet.
     
  4. Jobot

    Jobot Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 8, 2014
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    I considered worms, and I doubt the previous owner had ever wormed, but I wanted to give these ladies some time to adjust, since I only got them last wednesday. Also, we'd have to toss out eggs for weeks afterward, right? And Would a " butt cut" be bad for winter? That's the only thing I'm worried about cause we're in Utah and it's been frigid!
    A pick? Like just a hair pick? That could work. :)

    Thanks! As I talk to people about how difficult these birds have been in just the week I've had them, people keep questioning my sanity! Is it worth it? I think so. :) We might have a few of those laying around, so that'll save us money! What would be the bare minimum height for those, in your opinion? We have an A-frame coop.
     
  5. Curlyginger

    Curlyginger Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have a barred rock with dried poop stuck to her butt. In reading up in this site, it seems as though BRs are prone to this (they have very big, fluffy butts). I'm planning on giving her a trim tomorrow after dark. None of my other hens have this issue.
     
  6. Jobot

    Jobot Out Of The Brooder

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    See, that's funny because I have a bunch of barnyard mutts and the one I would have deemed the fluffiest doesn't have this issue! Hmmm...
     
  7. cafarmgirl

    cafarmgirl Overrun With Chickens

    A hair pick won't work. Use a good clipper or just a pair of scissors, that will be easiest and most comfortable for the birds.

    Yes, when you deworm you have to toss the eggs for 10 day after the second dose. But it's worth it when you consider the damage worms do to a bird. If worms are not kept under control they have the potential to kill the bird anyway. I know I'd rather eat eggs from healthy birds that aren't carrying around a heavy load of worms. Worms don't usually end up in the eggs but it has been known to happen.
     
  8. Jobot

    Jobot Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 8, 2014
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    Ok. So, my question is then that other than having poopy butts, I haven't seen any other signs of worms. I've checked their poops, which seem to be well formed and free of visible worms though they could have some that aren't visible, and they don't seem lethargic and all seem to be in pretty good spirits. Are there other signs to look for with worms? I'm not opposed to worming, but I would like to put my birds through less if at all possible. Some are still moulting, one has pin feathers and they did just get here a week ago. I just don't want to stress them out any more than I have to. Then you just worm them all, don't you? And where would I get a wormer? Do I need to go to a vet, or can I just get some Wazine from CAL Ranch?
     
  9. cafarmgirl

    cafarmgirl Overrun With Chickens

    You could have a fecal sample tested by a vet. Though if you go that route I'd do a few over a period of time. If you only do one and worms just don't happen to be shedding eggs at the moment you can get a false negative. And yes, you would worm all of them. You can get dewormer at most any feed store or Tractor Supply but don't waste your time on Wazine, it only gets round worms and there are many other worms chickens get. Get some liquid Safeguard for goats or some Valbazen. If you ask a vet they are likely to try to give you Ivermectin of some sort and studies are showing it is no longer effective as a poultry dewormer in many areas. Get the Safeguard or Valbazen and give each standard size bird 1/2 cc, repeat the dose in 10 days since the wormers don't kill worm eggs.

    If they are molting either don't use the Safeguard or wait until they are done molting. I haven't read up a lot of that but I've heard of some issues with using that during molt.
     
  10. Jobot

    Jobot Out Of The Brooder

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    Alright. Thanks! I'll have to call some vets around here and see what my options are. I have ho idea how long my gals will molt. I'm still finding feathers! Some of them still look so scruffy! And a couple just got over being broody I guess, cause they have bald patches on their breasts. Weird for black sex links to go broody, though, isn't it? At least that's what I think the three black ones are.
     

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